Chemical Peels: Know the Basics
The Three Most Asked Questions about Chemical Peels
What pops into your mind when you hear the words “Chemical Peels”? Peels are a favorite for exfoliation. They include a wide range of treatments that vary both in skin depth and recovery time. Intrigued? Learn here about the basics before scheduling your consultation with your facial specialist physician or medical aesthetician.
How long does it take to recover from a chemical peel?
The words “chemical peel” often bring to mind a major recovery with red, flaking skin, but this does not have to be the case. There are many levels of chemical peels, from quick “lunchtime” procedures performed by a medical aesthetician, to deeper peels that can only be performed by a physician. The recovery will vary greatly depending on the depth of the peel. Although we’ve all seen that iconic Sex and the City episode where Samantha gets a peel, it’s actually quite easy to avoid this scenario by carefully planning the timing of your recovery and choosing a level of peel that fits your lifestyle.
How do I select the chemical peel that’s right for me?
A facial specialist physician or trained medical aesthetician is the best person to help you select the level of peel that works best for your skin type, individual concerns and lifestyle. To get an idea on where to start, consider the following:
Light Peel – A light peel such as the VillanoMD Red Carpet Peel is the perfect quick fix for exfoliation. This removes the superficial outer layer of skin, revealing fresh, more youthful, hydrated skin. This is a quick office visit with no downtime, and typically does not result in peeling/flaking skin. Pair this with an exfoliating treatment such as dermaplane before the peel. A pre-peel dermaplane will remove dead skin cells and allow the peel to better penetrate and rejuvenate your skin.
Retinol 6% Peel – While this peel is typically performed by a medical aesthetician, it is one that’s only available under physician supervision. It offers more dramatic results than the light peel and addresses issues such as visible signs of aging and skin discoloration. This peel causes no to minimal discomfort during the treatment, and patients tend to start to feel skin tightening followed by some flaking or peeling 3-7 days post-treatment. After the exfoliation process is complete, fresh, more youthful looking skin is revealed.
Medium Depth TCA Peel – This is one of the more intensive peels that you can select, but it can take years off your skin. This procedure is performed in office by a physician and usually involves an advance consultation with the physician to determine the appropriate treatment. Medium depth peels can address visible signs of aging to a greater extent, eliminating or reducing fine lines and wrinkles, superficial scarring, blemishes and discoloration. With this peel, plan for some recovery time as your skin flakes off the outer layer.
Deep Phenol Peel – This is the deepest level of chemical peel and the one that offers the most dramatic results. A deep peel should be done only by an experienced physician and does require sedation. Typically, only a single treatment is needed to achieve truly amazing results, with years taken off your face. However, due to the longer recovery time and the need for sedation, you will want to consult with a physician who is a facial specialist to find out whether or not a deep peel is the right treatment for you.
How many treatments do I need to see results?
For optimum skin health, regular chemical peels are a recommended part of your skincare routine. Most people benefit from a light peel every 4-6 weeks to maintain healthy skin. If you have skin issues that require a medium peel, you can expect to see some results after the first treatments, but many people require several treatments to achieve their skin goals. These results can be long lasting with regular maintenance. Deep peels often only require a single procedure for lasting results.