Chemical peels are cosmetic treatments that can be applied to the face, hands, and neck. They’re used to improve the appearance or feel of the skin. During this procedure, chemical solutions will be applied to the area being treated, which causes the skin to exfoliate and eventually peel off. Once this happens, the new skin underneath is often smoother, appears less wrinkled, and may have less damage.
There are a number of reasons people may get chemical peels. They may be trying to treat a variety of things, including:
- wrinkles and fine lines
- sun damage
- acne scars
- uneven skin tone or redness
What type of chemical peels can I get?
There are three different types of chemical peels that you can get. These include:
- Superficial peels, which use mild acids like alpha-hydroxy acid to gently exfoliate. It only penetrates the outermost layer of skin.
- Medium peels, which use trichloroacetic or glycolic acid to reach the middle and outer layer of skills. This makes it more effective for removing damaged skin cells.
- Deep peels, which fully penetrate the middle layer of the skin to remove damaged skin cells; these peels often use phenol or tricholoracetic acid.
How do you prepare for a chemical peel?
Before your procedure, you’ll first have a consultation with the skin care specialist. During this visit, they’ll help you determine what the best treatment option is for you. They’ll let you know the details about the specific peel you’ll be getting, and they’ll ask about anything that could interfere with the peel. This may include whether you’ve taken acne medication, and information about whether or not you scar easily.
Before a chemical peel, you must:
not use any type of retinol or retin-A topical medication for at least 48 hours
inform your skin care specialist about any medications you take
not have been on Accutane for at least six months