A chemical peel is a wonderfully rewarding, controlled skin-resurfacing treatment. In fact superficial peels are one of the most popular skin treatments to be found because of their ability to give the skin an instant boost in a short period of time. Deeper peels can take a little longer before you see the results.

As the skin ages, the cell renewal process slows down and old dead skin cells build up on the surface of the skin, the epidermis. These cells are ‘glued’ together and cannot be removed effectively with a topical, abrasive exfoliator – they need a chemical intervention and this is where chemical peels work their magic!

By removing these dead skin cells, a chemical peel not only rejuvenates but revitalizes to reveal a fresh, vibrant skin beneath this dull, dry layer. The skin is smoother and the tone more even. With regular peels the skin is able to maintain a youthful glow and a peel is generally more satisfying than a normal facial as the results continue long after the feel-good factor of a facial have faded.

Dry, dead skin cells on the surface of the skin lead to dryness and dullness, both of which are very definite signs of an ageing, sun-damaged skin and they are right up there with fine lines, wrinkles and brown discolourations. Young people with early signs of skin ageing can also benefit from these peels to help correct this concern.

Chemical peels sound rather drastic and some people have misconceptions about the term ‘chemical’ but in fact most of the time the active ingredients in a peel are from natural sources such as glycolic acid which comes from sugar cane, lactic acid which is from sour milk and salicylic acid from the bark of a willow tree. Retinol is derived from Vitamin A.

The actual treatment is very simple, after cleansing and de-greasing the skin, a chemical solution is applied to the skin to peel away the accumulation of dead cells on the surface of the skin, enhancing cell renewal, increasing the moisture content of the skin and preparing the skin for the efficient penetration of active ingredients. It also helps to stimulate collagen regeneration in the dermis, the deeper layer of the skin.

In more superficial peels, the skin may be red on the day of the peel and the dry, dead layer will peel or flake off a few days after the peel revealing healthier, smoother and more radiant skin. Recommended home care products are always beneficial help to stimulate  and continue the skin renewal process. In deeper peels such as the TCA peels, the skin can be red for a few days and very tight. Thereafter, the dry, dead skin sheds for anything between 5-7 days and the deep collagen regeneration continues long after the peel procedure.

Chemical peels come in all strengths and with a variety of ingredients – many of the more modern peels have multi-ingredients to target more than one skin concern. They can treat skin ageing – fine lines and wrinkles, acne, pigmentation and are usually done on the face, neck, décolletage, hands and in some cases on other parts of the body like the arms and back which are more expensive – they are large areas and require more chemical solution and time.

Most of the peels are what we term ‘lunch time’ peels as they do not take longer than an hour and usually you can return straight to work or your daily activities. Deeper peels may require that you go straight home but the modern, controlled, deeper peels are usually not a problem and when a medically formulated cover foundation is applied, you can usually return to work.

You will require an assessment before a peel if it is the first time you are having one. This is to make sure that the right peel is performed for your specific skin condition. At this assessment, personal risks and benefits will be discussed and an in-depth history recorded to make sure any risks are minimised. The therapist will also discuss what to do or not to do before a peel and recommend products to prep the skin for optimal results.

Dermalaser Medical Skin & Laser Clinic, is owned and operated by 3 Dermatologists, so in the rare event of any undue reaction, we are able to call upon them for their expertise.

For more information, please click this link on our website Chemical Peels or you can make an appointment for an assessment and to ask any questions you may have.

Dermalaser: 021 -852 8709   Email: info@dermalaser.co.za