What is a chemical peel?
A chemical peel is a procedure in which a chemical exfoliant (acid or base) is applied to remove damaged layers of skin. Chemical peels are graded (very superficial to deep) depending on the depth of penetration and the layer of skin that is removed with a peel. Depending on the amount and depth of photodamage, real improvement in sun spots, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation may require different depths of chemical peels.
What are the benefits of chemical peels?
Corrective peels have been shown to be an excellent, non-invasive way to improve skin tone and texture as well as reverse aging effects caused by the sun, environment, and genetics. Chemical Peels are Effective for a broad range of problems including:
- Sun damaged skin and age spots on the face, hands, shoulders/back, chest, and neck
- Fine lines and wrinkles including: Crow’s feet, lipstick lines, fine lines around eyes
- Acne scars (better with medium/deep peels)
- Destruction of skin lesions
- Lighter and spot peels require no sedation
Reasons why you should have a chemical peel
SkinCeuticals professional treatments are scientifically formulated to gently stimulate, firm, and tighten the skin. Advanced ingredients are carefully blended and work synergistically to remove dull, damaged surface layers without the downtime often associated with chemical peels. SkinCeuticals includes a combination of treatments including enhanced jessner, blended TCA, Salicylic Acid, Retinol, and peel alternatives for correction.
VI Peel professional treatments are a favorite of ours! These medium depth peels can be customized to all skin types and colors, addressing all skin concerns. Another great feature is that they are essentially discomfort free! Their 5 custom peel blends address early signs of aging, pigmentation, melasma, mild to moderate lines, and acne on individuals as young as 13.
Can Chemical Peels be Combined with Other Procedures?
Yes. Chemical peel treatments are somewhat customized by strength. Depending on your needs, desired outcome, and preferences for downtime, you may combine a light to medium peel with other treatments. Some patients schedule a chemical peel sometime before or after a facelift to address structural as well as surface concerns. During your consultation, your doctor will ask about your specific and your broader cosmetic goals so they can devise a personal treatment plan just for you!
Are Chemical Peels Uncomfortable?
Because there are different strengths of chemical solutions used to perform these treatments, and because every person has a unique pain threshold, there is a chance that a chemical peel could be uncomfortable. That said, the vast majority of people who get a light or medium chemical peel do not experience pain. Tingling is the most common sensation to occur during a peel. You might also feel stinging or burning or just a general sense of warmth in the treatment area. Once the chemical solution has been removed and a nourishing serum or cream applied, these minor discomforts should subside quickly. Deep chemical peels can be painful, so are performed by the doctor after you have been anesthetized. These more aggressive treatments may incur some degree of post-treatment tightness and tenderness, as well. In many cases, our doctors recommend laser treatments as an alternative to deep chemical peels.
Though generally safe, chemical peel treatments are not ideal for every person. For people with darker skin tones, there is a chance that a chemical peel may cause undesirable pigment changes. The most common light and medium chemical peels are powerful tools against fine lines, enlarged pores, some types of scarring, and sun damage. They do not reverse the effects of aging such as jowls, severe wrinkles and creases, or puffiness like undereye bags. Our team uses the utmost care in determining the right treatment for each patient. When you visit us for your consultation, you can expect your provider to explore your concerns and goals, your medical history and lifestyle, and other factors that may indicate the most suitable treatment options.
In general, chemical peels carry a very low risk of severe side effects. Most people experience temporary swelling, burning, stinging, or dryness, all of which can be remedied at home. We consider risks more seriously as they pertain to skin tone and the strength of the peel. Even a medium chemical peel could lighten or darken a person's skin color. Stronger peels carry a slight risk of scarring, so it is important to know your history of scar formation. If you have herpes simplex, there is a risk that a chemical peel could cause a flare-up. Alert your provider about your condition. They may advise you to take a specific medication before your treatment to reduce this risk. Deep chemical peels, those that are performed using anesthesia, have more risks due to the amount of tissue they affect. Here, there are risks of scarring, infection, pain, and kidney, heart, or liver damage. You can expect your provider to discuss risks as they relate to your skin, general health, medical history, and type of peel.
Each chemical peel that we offer is designed to achieve results with just one treatment. That said, the degree of results you see will depend on the issues you want to improve, their severity, and the strength of the peel you select. If you have more significant cosmetic concerns to correct and you prefer to have light chemical peels that incur no downtime, it will take more treatments to improve your condition. Our providers are skilled at performing the full range of chemical peel treatments! When you consult with us, you can feel confident that you will receive the information you need to understand what is possible with our chemical peel treatments, what you can expect, and how you can maximize your experience.
Can Anybody Get a Chemical Peel?
Are There Any Risks Involved with Chemical Peels?
How Many Treatments are Needed to See Results?
Chemical Peel Pricing & Info
SkinCeuticals Glycolic Acid Peel is the most common glycolic chemical peel performed with different strength options available depending on patient tolerance and needs. This peel accelerates skin cell turnover for improvement of dry, dull skin and helps with fine lines and wrinkles. It is also completely safe and non-toxic. It can be used on the face, neck, chest, hands and back and comes with minimal irritaion.
SkinCeuticals Salicylic Acid Peel is best for oily and acne prone skin. This peel also increases cell turnover, which stimulates collagen, and also helps reduce breakouts and post-lesion discoloration. There is no downtime though mild peeling will likely occur.
The SkinCeuticals Pigment Balancing Masque is one of the newest treatments for brightening the skin. This masque targets uneven skin tones with a combination of skin brightening, anti-inflammatory and peeling agents, stimulating cell turnover and revealing the healthy skin below. If a mottled complexion and uneven skin tone is a concern, this is a great choice for a peel. It does not contain hydroquinone but has similar effectiveness.
The SkinCeuticals Advanced Corrective Peel helps minimize the appearance of large pores, evens skin tone and texture, restores brighter skin, and improves stubborn discoloration. This peel is safe for all skin types and Fitzpatrick I-V.
This peel is more advanced and great for all skin types. It is best for individuals 30+ with concerns of pigmentation, lines, acne scarring, and overall texture improvement. Expect peeling with this peel and smoother tone and texture when done in a series.
This peel is good for dry or combination Skin Types 1-4. It is great for individuals who are more sensitive to peels, but want a more aggressive treatment. It will address early signs of aging, fine lines, mild hyperpigmentation, and improve keratosis pilaris.
The VI Peel offers a non-invasive approach to healthier, younger looking with little downtime. It is virtually painless and suitable for all sky types. The VI Peel addresses fine lines, wrinkles, sun damage, pore size, acne and acne scarring. There are five major ingredients in each peel; Trichoraoacetic Acid (TCA), Retinoic Acid (Vitamin A), Salicylic Acid, Phenol, and L-Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C). The VI PLUS treatments offer a more aggressive approach to each peel. Transform your skin in as little as 7 days. Peels can be done every 4-6 weeks and depending on sky type, condition, a series may be recommended. A comprehensive post care kit is included with each treatment for safe and maximum results. To learn more about the different VI Peel options, click HERE.
Chemical Peel Before & After Photos
When receiving chemical peel treatments it is best to consult with one of our skin care specialists to determine a regimen best fit for you. Our light peels can be done routinely for maintenance on a schedule decided between you and the provider. If you are looking to address sun damage, acne scarring or years of skin aging concerns... a more aggressive option may be fit and is best done in a series for optimal results. A series is usually 3 or more chemical peels.
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Recovery from Very Superficial to Medium Depth Peels
Immediately following the procedure, the skin may appear red. Peeling begins to occur over the next 1–7 days. The underlying skin will appear slightly pink and healthier. The recommended post care and sunscreen is recommended. Make-up can be used, but will tend to make the skin look flakier. Improvement can be seen after just one peel and continues with subsequent peels, which can be performed every 2-4 weeks depending on the peel
Medium to Deep Peels by a Physician
Medium depth chemical peels are performed using TCA (30–40%). Because of the strength, they must be performed in the operating room under sedation. Spot treatments can be done in the office. The agent is applied to the face evenly and the depth of penetration carefully monitored. Deep chemical peels are performed using Baker’s solution under sedation and monitoring. Deep chemical peels are only appropriate for select patients. With advanced technology, our doctors steer toward laser treatments for effective improvement and less recovery.
Recovery from Medium to Deep Peels
The skin may appear red and swollen immediately following the procedure. The swelling is more pronounced with a deep chemical peel. The skin will turn brown over 48 hours and slough over the next 7–10 days. Make-up and sunscreen / moisturizer can then be used. The underlying skin will appear pinker and healthier. This pink appearance completely fades in 2–3 weeks and can be covered with make–up. Continued improvement from these peels can be seen even up to a year following the procedure. A medium depth peel can be repeated every 6 months to 1 year. A deep chemical peel can only be done once. Consult with one of our doctors to determine what will be the best treatment option for you.