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Chemical Skin Peels
What are Chemical Skin Peels?
The use of chemical peels to soften and improve the appearance of the skin dates back over 3,500 years to the ancient Egyptians. Historians describe the use of several different techniques, including the use of animal oils, salt, and alabaster to smooth the skin. Egyptian women bathed in sour milk, or rubbed fermented grape skins from the bottom of wine barrels over their skin to enhance beauty. Little did they know that they were benefiting from the superficial skin peeling effects of a family of chemicals called hydroxy acids which remove the outer layers of the skin. These acids have now been identified as lactic acid in milk and tartaric acid in grape skins and can be found in a huge number of modern beauty products. Today, scientists have identified numerous forms of acid which can be used to induce beneficial changes for our skin and facial peels have grown enormously in popularity over the past twenty-five years.
How do they work?
Chemical peeling (chemexfoliation) involves the application of a chemical solution to the surface of the skin to produce the careful removal of its outer layers. The amount of skin removed will depend on the type of chemical used, the strength of the product and how long it is left on the skin. They can be used on most areas of the body, but are commonly used on the face or the backs of the hands to improve rough skin texture, fine lines and wrinkles, age spots, sun damage, blemishes, scars or acne and actinic keratosis (precancerous skin growth). As the new skin grows back, it is normally smoother than before and imperfections are reduced. There are various depths of chemical peel - superficial, medium and deep. They achieve different results depending on your needs and recovery times vary with depth.
Depth of Peels
Remove the outer layer of the skin or the “epidermal layers” and the time needed for healing is minimal. They are suitable for those who don’t have time to recover from a deeper peel or don’t want any visible peeling.
Medium Depth Peels
Remove both the epidermal layers and upper dermal layers. These are the next layers down as you can see on the diagram. Medium chemical peels can achieve more noticeable and long lasting results for surface blemishes, fine lines and facial scarring, such as acne scarring. The peeling and redness may be noticeable in some individuals but the skin usually recovers within a week, however this can last up to 3 weeks.
Peeling extends deeper into the lower dermal layer
of the skin. A deep peel will help reduce more severe
facial wrinkles, and is often used around the mouth
and eyes. The peeling is often quite dramatic and
recovery takes longer.
The deeper the peel, the greater potential for improvement to
the skin but this also results in a more dramatic peeling process.
A minority of people can experience some side effects with
deeper peels and therefore I will refer you to a clinic that I trust
which caries out deeper peels if your skin needs this.
No matter how deep the peel, your skin will re-growand should heal fully.
Benefits of Skin Peels
- Healthier, younger-looking skin
- Smoother and softer skin
- Improved skin tone and pigment irregulation
- Reduction of fine lines and wrinkles
- Increased hydration and suppleness
- Improvement of oily/acne prone skin
I provide three types of peels which are superficial and medium depth peels:-
- Clinicare Silky Peel (free with every injectable treatment)
- Fire & Ice Peel
- Neostrata Peel
Clinicare Silky Peeling Gel
This is a non-abrasive peeling gel that effectively removes dead skin cells whilst encouraging new cells to come to the surface
Leaving the skin looking positivly radiant.
Fire & Ice Peel
This contains pharmaceutical grade ingredients and is designed to rapidly and safely resurface the skin. It reduces fine lines, address problematic skin and encourage cellular renewal.
The treatment consists of 2 masks; a powerful resurfacing masque containing glycolic and retinol and a cooling rejuvenating masque containing hyluronic acid.
There are a range of 4 strengths of peel in the Neostrata range, from 20% to 70% . Higher strengths can help to reduce the appearance of acne scarring and certain pigmentation problems but may only be used if lower strengths are first tolerated. Neostrata peels can be used on the face, the neck, the chest and the hands and can be used on all types of skin including: fine, normal, greasy or thick skin. It can also be used safely and effectively on black and asian skin.
Possible side effects
Most patients can undergo glycolic peeling without any side effects. The treated skin is virtually normal in appearance. The fact that the patient underwent a peel is usually undetectable to others. Although rare, a patient may experience mild sloughing, producing some weeping or scabbing. Some redness is temporary and normal. Rarely, if scabs are picked, scarring may occur or areas of hypopigmentation (lighter coloured skin) or hyperpigmentation (darker coloured skin) may result from a peel. Peels should not be used in Pregnant or breastfeeding women.
- It is vital that you protect your skin from the sun by using an UVA and UVB sunblock
- Avoid rubbing or touching the treated areas
- You may gently apply mineral make up post treatment or your normal make up once the redness has calmed
- Some people experience itching as skin cells are regenerated. Try to avoid scratching as this may delay healing. You can control this
with your regular moisturiser, cold compress or in extreme cases an over the counter antihistamine such as piriton or cetirizine
Chemical Skin Peels Section
1 - Fine Wrinkles
2 - Medium Wrinkles
3 - Deep Wrinkles