Chemical Face Peel products are super popular these days. If you have wrinkled or sun damaged skin or acne, you may be considering a chemical face peel. There are several different types ranging from the mild AHA peel which is just one step up from many exfoliating skin products, to a deep peel that requires anaesthetic and can take several months to heal.
Whatever type of peel you choose in consultation with your dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon, the idea is that the new skin revealed by the peel is less wrinkled or blemished. This can be a great bonus for people wanting to maintain a youthful look, as well as having health benefits for some people.
Types Of Chemical Face Peel
The AHA or alpha hydroxy acid peel is usually applied by a dermatologist. Beta hydroxy acid is sometimes used as an alternative. These treatments are not painful and do not require an anesthetic, although there will be some discomfort during the process and for a few days after treatment you are likely to have some stinging, redness and mild irritation.
AHA peels use naturally occurring acids like lactic acid found in sour milk and tomato juice to reduce fine lines and treat rough, dry skin and acne. They can also reduce areas of uneven pigmentation or sun damage. It is common to have several treatments over a period of time to achieve the desired effect.
Trichloroacetic acid is a stronger peel and is often used instead of phenol for people with darker skin. It is good for correcting skin pigment problems and reducing fine lines and blemishes. Trichloroacetic acid has a numbing effect on the skin so anesthesia is not required but you may be offered a sedative and pain killers. Repeat treatments are sometimes required. It is essential to use a sunblock after the peel, even if your skin is dark.
The phenol chemical peel, which also contains croton oil, is a strong deep peel that usually requires anesthetic and is likely to be performed by a cosmetic surgeon. This can smooth deep wrinkles, remove precancerous growths, and correct any blemishes due to sun exposure or aging. It can remove freckles and often leaves the skin permanently lighter.
Should You use a Chemical Face Peel?
Phenol chemical face peel is not recommended for people with heart problems, and as always there is some risk of an adverse reaction to the anesthetic. Occasionally a phenol peel will be performed under heavy sedation only, but as it is very painful, it is usually better if the patient is anesthetized. This is a drastic cosmetic treatment that can take several months to heal but one treatment is all you need.
Skin care after a phenol peel is very important. Prescription moisturizers may be recommended and you must only use very gentle cleansing products. The peeling skin must not be scratched or pulled. It is best to stay out of the sun during the healing process and extra sun protection will be required permanently.
There are other kinds of chemical peels available, but these are the most common. Discuss the procedures with your dermatologist or a cosmetic surgeon if you are interested in finding out more about how a chemical face peel could benefit you and your skin.