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Do Chemical Peels Really Work?
Chemical peeling uses a chemical solution to remove damaged outer layers of facial skin. Many people choose to have a chemical peel as a way to get more youthful looking skin without going through the trouble and expense of cosmetic surgery. While a chemical facial peel cannot produce the results of a facelift or other surgeries which reduce the signs of age, it can give patients smoother-looking skin.
- Chemical Peel Side Effects
Chemical peels can be effective in removing blemishes and wrinkles and toning uneven skin pigmentation. Chemical facial peels remove the top layer of facial skin and bring healthier skin cells to the surface....
- Reasons to Get a Chemical Peel
There are plenty of reasons to get a chemical peel, including the improved skin texture and chemical peels for acne. Chemical peeling, using a variety of chemicals such as the levulan kerastick is often an effective way to minimize pores and tighten
So how do chemical peels work? Chemical peels are made up of three chemicals: phenol, trichloroacetic acid (TCA) and alphahydroxy acids (AHAs). The particular amount of each used depends on the needs of each individual patient. The chemical solution is applied to the face (or occasionally in more diluted forms to the neck, arms, legs, or chest) to “peel off” the outer skin cells and expose the more healthy skin cells below. This often makes skin softer and allows it to absorb moisture more easily for a fresher look. Peeling off the outer layer of skin also removes blackheads and clogged pores that can make skin look dull.
Each of the three chemicals produces a different strength of chemical facial peel. Alphahydroxy acids (AHAs) are the mildest of the peel formulas and are used for light peels which remove fine wrinkling, areas of dry skin, uneven coloration and acne. Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) produces a moderate-depth chemical facial peel that smooths wrinkles, removes blemishes, and corrects uneven pigmentation. Phenol chemical facial peels are the deepest and strongest chemical facial peels and are used to treat deep facial wrinkles, areas of skin damaged by exposure to the sun, or pre-cancerous growths.
While chemical peels do come with potential side effects (mostly redness, swelling, or irritation in affected areas), they are effective at providing patients with smoother facial skin and fewer facial blemishes and wrinkles. Besides its cosmetic benefits, chemical facial peels can also remove pre-cancerous skin growths, lessen the appearance of facial scars and help to control acne. Some insurance companies will cover the costs of a chemical facial peel.
While the deepest chemical peels are usually administered in a doctor’s office, milder chemical peels are administered at spas or even at home. Patients often see the positive results of a chemical facial peel soon after treatment. All chemical facial peels require recovery after treatment, which may vary from a few days to a few months. While a chemical peel offers many benefits, patients should consult their doctors carefully before getting any type of chemical peel to decide if it is the right treatment for them.