Chemical Peels: Facts vs Myth

Have you heard about chemical peels? Are you unsure if they are safe? Read the following Chemical peels myths vs facts to see if it’s as scary as you think ?

Chemicals Peels Myth #1

You can’t show your face after a chemical peel


When scheduling a chemical peel it is advised to avoid treatment close to significant events. The amount of downtime depends on the depth of the chemical peel. Significant downtime is typical of a very deep chemical peel that should only be performed by physicians. Due to the availability of laser treatments that provide deep resurfacing with fewer side effects and more control these deeper peels aren’t performed as frequently. There are many different types of peels available. Some of these peels are very mild with no visible exfoliation or downtime at all including alpha and beta hydroxy peels. There are deeper peels such as Jessners or TCA that are stronger and leave visible peeling and redness. A series of mid-depth peels can give you the results of one very deep peel without the downtime.

Chemicals Peels Myth #2

You can perform a chemical peel at home


The superficial peels sold at the local drugstore cannot give you the results you would get from a professional peel. Furthermore, misuse can cause serious damage to the skin. Stronger peels may be found online, but again the risks for scarring and hypopigmentation are even higher in untrained hands. These deeper peels should only be performed by medical professionals or specially trained estheticians working in a medical office. It is not as simple as just applying the product to the skin, medical questionnaires and a skin evaluation are necessary to screen for possible contraindications. The skin also needs to be cared for properly before, during and after the procedure. The peels found online usually do not come with instructions and patients ultimately spend more money in the long run on expensive medical appointments and cosmetic treatments to try and repair the damage.

Chemicals Peels Myth #3

Receiving a chemical peel is a 1-time procedure


Superficial peels reduce the appearance of fine lines, even out skin tone and to treat acne and acne scarring. Although chemical peels can help repair visible damage, they cannot repair the historical damage of the sun and other factors associated with aging. Deeper peels are performed to help correct these same ailments, but because they penetrate deeper into the skin, they will create a response to stimulate new collagen production as well. Receiving this treatment once will give the skin visible results, however, it needs to be done on a consistent basis to receive the best outcome. You can compare it to exercise where the more consistent your routine is the better your outcome. The amount of damage will correlate to the number of treatments required, as well as the consistency and depth for correction. Patient skincare and protection following the procedure is paramount to the outcome and overall healing.

Chemicals Peels Myth #4

Chemicals are bad


The chemical aspect of the peel refers to the combination of acids designed by a chemist. The active acids in most chemical peels are naturally derived. Glycolic acid comes from sugar cane, lactic acid from sour milk and salicylic acid from wintergreen. The fact is, some of the most beneficial non-irritating ingredients, like hyaluronic acid, actually help to heal the skin and cause no exfoliation at all. In the hands of a professional, these acids can be used safely, given that all potential risks and possible contraindications are fully assessed prior to treatment.

Chemicals Peels Myth #5

I won’t benefit from a chemical peel if I don’t have problem skin


Chemical peels are beneficial for most skin types. Chemical peels not only treat problem-prone skin, but they can also be preventative. In some cases, chemical peels can be used to not only correct cosmetic issues but can help prevent certain types of skin cancer. Results will only be effective if proper skincare products are used along with proper sun protection. The best way to ensure you are receiving the treatment for you is to do your homework. See a skincare professional that thoroughly answers your questions, and properly educated you of the treatment you are receiving.