“The words ‘chemical peel’ might make you run or cringe. It just doesn’t sound like a pleasant thing, but it is not as scary as it sounds. We’ll get into the process of the ‘peeling’ part in a minute. First, let’s look at the benefits of having one of these amazing treatments done.
A chemical peel does wonders for all types of skin, and though the majority of the results will be achieved over time, there are some great immediate results too. This treatment improves the overall look and texture of the skin, leaving a youthful glowing appearance. It helps with improving fine lines, skin density, acne and even reduce pore size. It’s been said that Cleopatra would use sour milk on her skin to improve its appearance. Sour milk contains Lactic Acid, which is an Alpha-Hydroxy-Acid, and is a popular ingredient in many anti-aging treatments.
Ok, so how does a Chemical Peel work? A solution is applied topically to the skin, which lowers its pH level and loosens the connection (or you can think of it like a glue) that keeps the dead skin attached to the healthy skin cells. This then stimulates the exfoliation process, causing all the dead skin to come to the surface and ‘peel’ off. The density of the epidermis is left thickened, and collagen production is stimulated. Once the dead skin cells are removed, the booster products you put on your skin afterwards will penetrate better and more quickly. After we perform a thorough and complete skin analysis, we can recommend a proper treatment course to address all of your skin concerns.
Will I ‘peel’ right away? Some people may think their treatment didn’t work properly because they aren’t seeing immediate exfoliation. A lot of the sloughing off happens at the cellular level, so you don’t see it happening on the surface. Every patient and every treatment is different, so some might experience shedding after three treatments, while others might have it sooner. Also, the climate may affect how your skin ‘peels’. For instance, humid warm weather is likely to make the skin cells stick together more than colder, drier weather.
What should I do when I’m done my treatment? You’ll leave our spa with the solution still on, but you don’t need to wash it off as it is self-neutralizing and it will just absorb into your skin. When you’re here, we’ll tell you the best way to care for your post-peel skin to make sure you get the best results. You’re also going to need a broad-spectrum sun protection as your skin will be more sensitive to the sun, and you should continue using it after each treatment because as the new healthy cells come to the surface they’ll need the extra protection. You should also try to avoid activities that cause your skin to heat, like workouts, hot tubs and saunas. We will advise you on how to use your post-peel products so you can properly protect, heal and soothe your skin and maintain your results.
What should I expect from my 2nd treatment? Your second treatment, and any treatments thereafter will be similar to your first, but we may adjust the solution based on your tolerance and your skin biology, making for a deeper treatment. You may see more or less visible exfoliation, but it doesn’t mean the peel is more or less effective than your first one. It all depends on each individual, as some have more build up of dead skin than others. Everyone has a different tolerance for peels, and typically your tolerance will increase with every succeeding peel. When the skin gets used to the process of having these treatments done, it will begin to rejuvenate itself better and act like younger skin.”
When will I see results? After your first treatment, you’ll notice an immediate radiant glow to the skin, but to see the full potential of what a chemical peel can do for your skin, it will take some time. For more significant results in treating textural issues, fine lines and inflamed acne it could take up to 8 weeks. It is really important you’re using your homecare products consistently and as directed to get optimal results. The same way you take time to exercise, you need to take the time for your daily ‘skin care workout regime’.
What do we use for our Chemical Peels? At our spa, we choose AlumierMD for our peel treatments. We use light to medium depth peels because of their efficacy and safety and we believe in repeated treatments for progressive and gradual results. This also avoids the side effects and downtime that deeper peels can be known for. It is important to have your chemical peel performed by a trained skin care professional in a clinical setting so they are delivered safely and effectively.
What ingredients do we use in our peels? Some of the more common peeling ingredients include alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids, trichloroacetic acid, and retinol. AHA’s come from things like sugar cane (glycolic acid), milk (lactic acid), oranges and lemons (citric acid), apples and pears (malic acid), grapes (tartaric acid) and almonds (mandelic acid). The only beta hydroxy acid is salicylic acid. The strength of a chemical peel is determined by the type of ingredients used, their concentrations and the pH of the formulation. Not all peels are created equally either! What works for you, may not work for someone else because certain ingredients will be more effective for treating acne, whereas others are better for treating the signs of aging or hyperpigmentation. Together, we will determine the best peel for you during your initial assessment.