Are Chemical Peels Safe for Your Skin?
If you’re interested in getting a facial chemical peel to reduce the signs of aging or remove scars from acne, then you should read this article about chemical peels. Get answers to the question, are chemical peels safe? And decide for yourself whether you need one or not.
Are you looking to reduce the signs of aging or get rid of scars on your face? Have you tried creams or other treatments and they just aren’t cutting it?
It might be time to consider a chemical peel.
Of course, the first question that probably comes to mind is, are chemical peels safe?
The name “chemical peel” doesn’t do much to instill confidence. But we’ll take a look at the many benefits – as well as minor risks – of this procedure to help you make a decision.
Some Benefits of Chemical Peels
Back in the 1990s, chemical peels were primarily glycolic peels. They were painful and left the skin raw.
That’s not the case anymore.
Since that time, acid formulas have been refined. And so too have dermatologists’ approaches to using them.
For example, they can be used to do the following:
1. End Acne and Soften the Resulting Scars
Salicylic acid is one of most effective chemicals used in peels to treat acne.
Along with lactic acid and an antiseptic exfoliant called resorcinol, it dives deep into skin to unclog pores. At the same time, it skims the surface of the skin to erode blackheads and fade scars.
Using a salicylic acid chemical peel has lasting effects too. It lingers in the pores, to continue keeping them clear over time. And dermatologists can target individual divots with concentrated amounts of the chemical before applying a weaker acid to the rest of the face.
It’s a method that seems to be more effective than resurfacing lasers. Plus, there’s almost no downtime and it’s safe for all skin colors. With lasers, there’s a nearly 30% chance of an acne eruption after a treatment.
There isn’t much sense in getting a treatment for acne that might actually cause an outbreak.
2. Help Your Skin “Work” Better
Not to mention your skincare products.
That’s because when you get a chemical peel, the acids lift away dead cells which then triggers a nice chain reaction. When that topmost layer is shed, signals are sent to the living cells below to multiply and move up to the surface.
This, in turn, increases collagen production and signals the cells to make more hyaluronic acid – something we have a wealth of when we’re young but lose as we get older. Hyaluronic acid replenishes the moisture that is crucial to having younger-looking, supple skin.
Another benefit of a chemical peel? Your skin-care products will perform better, especially after the peel when there are no longer deal cells impeding their penetration.
3. Help Manage Dark Spots
Unfortunately, there isn’t any permanent cure for those recurring sun-triggered dark patches brought on by hormonal surges such as those caused by pregnancy or some birth controls.
But when paired with at-home bleaching creams, high-SPF sunscreen, and vigilant sun avoidance, chemical peels offer the best chance of keeping them at bay for the long-term.
Although laser treatments can eliminate the spots initially, the pigment often reappears within weeks – making this treatment a pretty major investment for such short-term results.
There are also many other benefits of chemical peels, and they can be highly customized to meet your needs.
There Are Different Types of Peels
The results you get from your chemical peel will depend on the depth of the peel as well as the concentration of the chemicals applied.
1. Superficial Chemical Peel
A superficial facial doesn’t penetrate deep into the skin or dermis. It affects only the epidermal, or outer layer of the skin, and causes the top layer of your skin to peel off.
Superficial peels can be done quickly and are often referred to as “lunchtime peels” since they could, theoretically, be done during your lunch hour. Plus, you’re able to return to normal activities right after it.
Ultimately, a superficial facial peel simply gives your skin a smoother finish and a more refreshed appearance. Those using alpha-hydroxy acid can also reduce fine wrinkles, and improve the texture, tone, and color of your skin.
2. Medium Chemical Peel
A medium chemical peel penetrates your skin deeper than the superficial and requires a little more healing time.
That’s because it affects the epidermis and the upper layer of the dermis. It causes these deeper layers of skin to peel off.
Medium peels can be used to treat fine to moderate wrinkles and darker brown spots on your skin, crow’s feet around the eyes, and even precancerous spots.
3. Deep Chemical Peels
For this deepest peel, a chemical agent called Phenol is often utilized.
This type of peel results in the peeling off of the epidermis so the chemicals can penetrate the two layers of the dermis.
Deep facial peels are most effective in treating deep facial wrinkles, deep acne scars, severe skin discoloration and severe sun damage.
It is with these deep peels that you can see the longest recovery time and an increased risk of complications. Plus, they cannot be used on darker skin types due to the risk of hypopigmentation or bleaching.
So all of this brings us back to the main question:
Are Chemical Peels Safe?
With most chemical peels, adverse reactions are rare. After a superficial or medium peel, there might be some of the following side effects:
- mild irritation
These are normal will only last for a few days at most.
Stronger chemical peels will take more recovery time and the peeling or crusting of the skin will be more pronounced. There might even be some scarring and numbness, as well as increased risk of infection during this time.
And those who decide to undergo any chemical peel should carefully follow their doctor’s’ instructions for both pre- and post-procedure care to minimize the potential for adverse side effects.
Of course, as with any medical procedure, patients should always consult with their primary care doctor, especially if they have a pre-existing medical condition.
But the majority of patients who are cleared to undergo a chemical peel suffer no serious side effects from it. And most say that, given the benefits of chemical peels, they would repeat the treatment.
Don’t believe us? Just take a look at some of the reviews from Radiance Wellness & Beauty!
A Chemical Peel Could Be Just What You Need
Especially now that you’ve got a clearer answer to the question of “are chemical peels safe?”
So if you’re feeling confident about chemical peels and are ready to get smoother, younger-looking skin, this might be the solution. You could always start with a superficial peel and go from there.
And be sure to keep checking back with our blog on more great information and tips!