Chemical peels are used to reduce scars, fine lines and pigmentation caused by acne, sun spots, or wrinkles due to aging. The chemical applied allows molecules to sink into the skin and will cause a tingling effect. The chemical can stay on the skin from 1 to 10 minutes and then it neutralizes or cools and is removed. As the chemicals seep into the skin, they boost collagen while lifting off the top layer, or the epidermis, of the skin. This causes a peeling effect. After a layer of skin peels off, it reveals the second layer or the dermis, which has fresher, tighter cells that are not as damaged.
Some mild chemical peel solutions may be applied to the face, neck and chest. More aggressive chemical peel solutions may only be applied to the face, avoiding the eyebrows, eyes, lips or any sensitive areas of the skin. The milder peel may be performed every 1 to 4 weeks, or as recommended by your aesthetician. A more aggressive peel may only be done once, after consulting your aesthetician. After any peel, the skin will likely feel tight, as if it is sunburned or wind burned. You may be given special moisturizer or a gentle cleanser to avoid irritation post-procedure.
There are many types of chemical peels from superficial to deep. The most superficial can be done in the morning and a patient can then go to work, while a stronger peel may require to take time following the procedure and scabbing or excessive peeling may occur. Deciding which chemical peel is right for your skin requires a specialist, such as a aesthetician professional.
There are different chemicals used depending on your skin type. A glycolic acid peel is an option, as is a salicylic, carbonic or lactic acid peel. These peels may be put on a patient's skin for 1 minute and up to 10 minutes.
The time following a chemical peel can be just as crucial for your skin as the peel itself because this is when your skin renews itself. The aftercare can vary depending on what type of peel you received and what ingredients were in the serum.