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Chemical Facial Peels

Chemical peels are used to improve the appearance of the face by removing the damaged top layers of skin. Most chemical peels are performed for cosmetic reasons. They are especially beneficial to those who wish to reduce blemishes, smooth wrinkles, and even out skin pigmentation. They can also be used to remove pre-cancerous growths and to improve acne scars. Although most chemical peels are performed in a doctor’s office, cosmetic companies are now selling inexpensive home kits that offer some of the benefits of professional treatments.

If you are thinking of having a chemical facial peel, consider the following:

  • The mildest form of peel comes from using alphahydroxy acids such as glycolic, lactic or fruit acids. These peels will smooth the skin, reduce damage from the sun, and help control acne. They can be used with a bleaching agent to reduce pigment problems. To be effective, a series of these peels may be necessary.
  • Trichloroacetic acid peels also smooth wrinkles, remove blemishes, and help pigment problems. These can be used on the neck or other body areas besides the face. This type of peel takes very little time, and recovery is quick and easy. The peel depth can be adjusted. More than one treatment may be needed to achieve the best results. These peels are usually the best choice for those with darker skin tones.
  • Phenol peels are the strongest. They will smooth coarse wrinkles, and improve skin affected by exposure to the sun, aging or taking birth control pills. They can remove pre-cancerous growths. The results from these peels are often long lasting, but they take more time to administer, and complete recovery may take several months.
  • At home chemical peel kits involve a process of cleaning the face, applying the acid solution, and then removing it after about 5 to 10 minutes. These kits are milder versions of peels that are

    professionally available, so the results will not be as dramatic. Be sure to follow all directions.

Finally, care should be taken to use sunblocking products after any type of facial peel.

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