Today, there are many different cosmetic procedures that can allegedly reduce the signs of aging and damage to your face. One such procedure is a chemical peel. During this technique, a chemical solution is applied to the face, which then peels away damaged skin cells – addressing certain problems such as wrinkles, uneven skin tone, acne, and dark spots – and helping healthy skin to grow in their place. The skin that grows back is smoother and more radiant.
However, your results will depend on a number of things – for example, the type of peel you receive and the condition of your skin to begin with.
Levels of Chemical Peels
There are a variety of levels of chemical peels – light, medium, and deep. A light peel exfoliates your skin, removing only the epidermis (the top skin layer). This light peel is typically used for acne, dry skin, small, fine wrinkles, and uneven skin tone. Since it is light, you are safe to get this type of peel every 2 to 5 weeks.
A medium chemical peel is stronger and removes the epidermis plus the top layer of your dermis (the layer underneath the epidermis). The medium peel is generally used for wrinkles, skin tone, and acne scars. You may need to receive several medium treatments before you’ll get the result you want.
The deep chemical peel will remove your epidermis and the upper and middle layers of your dermis. The doctor will use strong chemicals and you will most likely want to get a mild anesthetic before the treatment to help with any discomfort. This deep peel is used for deeper wrinkles, deeper scars, and sometimes even precancerous patches. The treatment will last for approximately 10 years and you get it only once, so you won’t need repeat procedures.
SPECIFIC CONDITIONS TREATED WITH CHEMICAL PEELS
Acne and Acne Scars
Chemical peels can often help acne and acne scars. A peel can:
- Break down plugged hair follicles
- Reduce oily areas
- Kill bacteria
- Cut down on skin inflammation
- Help you absorb treatments applied to the skin
By keeping dead skin cells and excess oil from clogging the hair follicle, pimples and pore blockages can be decreased. For acne scars, the chemical peel will exfoliate the top skin layer and improve bumpy scars or the scars that cause depressions in your skin.
Rosacea and Hyperpigmentation
A condition called Rosacea causes swelling and redness on your skin. Often, a chemical peel can help with these symptoms.
In addition to acne scars and age spots, chemical peels can improve hyperpigmentation. Hyperpigmentation is a condition caused by extra Melanin (a brown, black, or red pigment on the skin) that makes some areas of the face darker than other areas. The spots aren’t painful, but they do make people feel uncomfortable and embarrassed.
Chemical peels can help:
- Uneven skin tone
- Melasma (caused by sun exposure or hormones from pregnancy that causes spots or freckles on the face)
- Scars from surgery
- Other skin damage (if you have years of sun exposure, you can develop actinic keratoses – rough skin patches. They can be precancerous growths. A deep chemical peel can help remove these patches and cut back on your risk of skin cancer).
Chemical peels can also help limit symptoms of aging including:
- Wrinkles and fine lines
- Age spots and uneven skin tone
- Liver spots (Older people, people with light skin, and people who have spent a great deal of time in the sun, can develop liver spots – a dark spot on the face or other areas of the skin)
After a chemical peel, your face produces elastin and collagen. These can help your skin become stronger, softer, and more flexible, and even reduce wrinkles. The new skin helps to limit dryness and roughness.
Chemical peels aren’t suggested for eliminating deep wrinkles and they usually won’t tighten badly sagging skin.
Should You Get a Chemical Peel?
Chemical peels are not recommended for everyone. You might be a good candidate if your skin:
- Is Healthy
- Has only mild scarring
- Has wrinkles that are superficial
- Has a lighter complexion
On the other hand, you probably should not get a chemical peel and should discuss it with your doctor if you:
- Have taken the oral acne medication isotretinoin (Myorisan, Claravis, others) in the past six months
- Have a personal or family history of ridged areas caused by the growth of scar tissue (keloids)
- Are pregnant
- Have frequent or severe outbreaks of cold sores
- Have a compromised immune system
Recall that chemical peels can improve your skin texture, tone, and the appearance of fine wrinkles. They can also make your skin appear smoother and improve acne and acne scars. Most light and medium peels are not painful but you might feel a burning sensation that lasts only a few minutes or some stinging during or after your treatment. If this happens, cool compresses will help.
You may have more dramatic improvements in your skin with a deep chemical peel. Some people require pain medication during or after the deep peel.
Keep in mind that over time, age and new sun exposure will lead to new color damage, freckles, and new lines so it’s a good idea to avoid as much sun as you possibly can. After a chemical peel, your skin will be more sensitive to the sun, so it’s always a good idea to use sunscreen and other sun protection after a Chemical Peel treatment.
If you’re thinking a Chemical Peel might be good for you, feel free to call DrTen20 in Dana Point, California for a complimentary consultation with Dr. Adrian de la Torre. Dr. de la Torre has a multitude of 5-star reviews in which clients express their confidence in him and his many years of extensive experience with the human face, For additional information regarding a DrTen20 Chemical Peel, when you meet with Dr. de la Torre, he will help you determine the type of peel you need to improve your specific skin conditions and if there are any other suggestions of treatments you may want to consider to help return your skin to its youthful glow. For a complimentary consultation please call 949.489.1317.
DrTen20 Antiaging MedSpa
4197 CA-1 #102,
Dana Point, CA 92629