How and why chemical peels work: everything you need to know

Have you ever considered having a chemical peel, but are nervous about giving it a try? You’re not alone. People often ask me if they will end up like Samantha in Sex And The City, whose deep peel went horribly wrong! Firstly let me reassure you that this is not what will happen to you. Chemical peels do indeed work by removing the surface layer of the skin, and although there may be some light flaking, it will never be a case of your entire skin falling off!

In fact, peels are among the most popular aesthetic treatments available today. And why is that? To put it simply: because they work.

Peels don’t just remove skin

There are many different chemical peel products available, but they all work in the same basic way. During a peel, a special chemical is applied to the skin on the face, neck or hands. This chemical removes the top layer of skin, revealing the skin beneath, which usually has fewer wrinkles and is smoother.

But this isn’t the end of the process. Chemical peels contain a form of acid, such as glycolic acid or salicylic acid, which basically creates a controlled injury to the surface of the skin. This encourages the skin to rebuild and repair itself, kick-starting the regeneration process.

How do chemical peels improve the skin?

Peels improve the appearance of the skin in a number of ways, namely:

  • Reducing the fine lines around the eyes and mouth
  • Improving the appearance of mild scars
  • Treating the effects of sun damage, including age spots and freckles
  • Tackling the dark patches caused by melasma (due to pregnancy or other hormonal changes)
  • Improving the appearance of some types of acne
  • Improving the texture of rough skin

The other big thing in their favour is that they are suitable for all types of skin – including fair skins.

Things to be aware of:

  • Immediately after a peel, your skin will be more sensitive to the sun, so you should protect it with a high SPF sun cream
  • Some peels have an instant effect: the Obagi Blue Peel Radiance treatment, for example, is a great “starter” peel, as it is less intensive and has little to no down-time
  • If you want to tackle deeper lines and wrinkles you can opt for the Obagi Blue Peel. This is a truly deep TCA (trichloroacetic acid) peel, and includes three months of preparation with the Obagi Nuderm kit
  • We have a number of different peels available at The Clinic, varying in strength – in other words the depth at which they act on the skin, as shown on the diagram below:

Chemical Skin Peels

If you’d like to find out more, why not book in for a consultation? We will discuss your desired outcomes in depth, and talk through all the options available – not just chemical peels, but other skincare options and anti-ageing techniques. You will have all the information you need to decide if you’d like to go ahead. You can also find out more about the skin peels available at The Clinic by clicking here.

 

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