Unclog the pores, diminish colonization of the skin with acne-causing Propionibacterium acnes. They can address skin irregularities like discolorations and acne scarring. The area to be treated is thoroughly cleansed and the appropriate chemical solution is carefully applied. Both the solution and the length of time it is left on the skin will vary with skin type and whether a mild or moderate chemical peel treatment has been selected.
Glycolic Acid/Alpha Hydroxy Acid Peel
Glycolic acid is a member of the alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) family of carboxylic acids. Glycolic acid is ideal for improvement of wrinkles, sun-related damage, uneven pigmentation, and acne. Once applied, glycolic acid chemically exfoliates the outer layer of skin (epidermis), revealing the underlying new skin and giving your skin an even, dewy texture. In addition, glycolic acid stimulates synthesis of new collagen and elastic fibers that strengthen the skin.
Glycolic acid and other alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) are the mildest of the chemical peel formulas and produce light superficial peels. These types of peels provide smoother, brighter-looking skin for people who desire gradual improvement without associated side effects and long recovery periods. Concentrations can range from 20% to 70%. Optimal results are achieved after four to six sessions.
Candidates for glycolic acid peels include individuals with superficial lines and fine wrinkles of the face, neck, upper chest, arms, etc.; uneven pigmentation; enlarged facial pores; superficial acne scars; lentigines, age (liver) spots.
Preparation for a Chemical Peel
You may be prescribed medication to take prior to the treatment to prevent a bacterial and/or viral infection and topical medication to prepare the skin and decrease the risk of pigmentary changes. Your skin must be free of active infections, including active cold sores (herpes simplex virus, herpes labialis, HSV). If you have a history of cold sores systemic anti-viral medication may be recommended for several days prior to the peel. You must also not have taken Accutane for a period of 12-18 months before a treatment.
Mild redness is expected for several days after the peel. For the next 7 to 10 days or so your skin will shed its dead, damaged layer. You may not be able to see the peeling, but, when visible, the peeling begins 2-4 days after the chemical peel and usually lasts 3-7 days. In addition, you may feel some mild tingling or itching. Mild swelling is normal and may occur for up to 3 days.
To achieve the best results and minimize the risk of complications:
Yes. Chemical peels can be safely performedon all skin types and tones. Moderate and deep chemical peels, however, should be used cautiously if you have skin type III-VI to avoid temporary hyperpigmentation.
Chemical peels can be performed on the face, neck, chest, arms and hands.
Mild peels are performed using fruit acids such as mandelic, salicylic, lactic or glycolic acids. Moderate peels are performed using trichloracetic (TCA) acid and Jessner’s solution.
Mild peels produce minimal redness, some late peeling and no downtime. Multiple mild peels performed over several months will greatly enhance the radiance, tone, textureand color of the skin. When used in series every 3-4 weeks, mild peels may correct pigmentary problems (dark spots), superficial blemishes, sun damage, fine lines and wrinkles.
Moderate peels require one to two weeks of recovery, but will usually produce more dramatic results in just one treatment than multiple mild peels. Moderate peels are used to correct pigmentary problems, superficial blemishes, moderate sun damage, fine lines and wrinkles.
Mild chemical peels show noticeable improvementin texture, tone, softness, clarity,pores, age spots, fine lines and skin brightness.
Moderate chemical peels show dramatic improvement of age spots, freckles fine wrinkles, mild scars, skin tone, texture, melasma, sun damage and uneven pigmentation.
Yes. Mild chemical peels are considered a maintenance treatment and can be performed as often as every two weeks.
Moderate chemical peels can be repeated after six months to one year depending on the goal of the procedure. For example, melasma, characterized by abnormal facial pigment, may respond to repeated moderate and deep chemical peels, as will some other skin conditions.
Mild chemical peels are considered extremely safe. On rare occasions, side effects may include minimal scarring, blisters, and uneven pigmentation.
Moderate chemical peels are also considered safe but should be performed by those who have extensive experience. Rarely, can cause permanent scarring, skin whitening or darkening, infections, redness and other complications.
The sensation will vary depending on the type of the peel.
Mild chemical peels produce a tingling or stinging of the skin but very little discomfort.
Moderate chemical peels produce an intense stinging and burning for two to three minutes until the chemical is neutralized, followed by a feeling of numbness. Topical anesthesia and/or mild oral sedation may used to ease discomfort during the procedure.