What is a chemical peel?
Chemical peeling is a technique used to improve the skin’s appearance. It involves the removal of various layers of the epidermis by applying a chemical irritant or caustic. This produces a renewal of the skin layers replacing them by better quality ones with fewer blemishes and/or wrinkles. It also improves skin texture.
Superficial and medium chemical peels are performed on outpatient consultation. The depth of the peeling determines the recovery of the skin, which can range from a few hours to about five days.
When are Peels best used?
They are used to improve the appearance of sun-damaged skin or rosacea. They also reduce wrinkles, improve acne or chicken pox scarring, as well as they can remove stains and skin discoloration. Depending on the penetrating power of the chemical used, more layers of skin are removed. Although the peeling is indicated in cases of physiological aging or sun damage and to treat spots and acne, it can also be used as a means to “maintain a healthy, smooth skin free of impurities and light skin.”
How long does the peeling application last?
It depends on the extension and treated substance being applied. Usually procedures vary between 10 minutes to 2 hours.
How often should a peeling be done to gain optimum results?
The periods between peelings depend on treatment’s objective, as well as the type of substance applied. Peelings used to lighten facial areas are administered between four and eight sessions held every 2 weeks or every month until desired results are obtained. After obtaining the desired results, a maintenance session every four to six months afterwards is strongly recommended. When a deep skin level is involved, sessions should be distanced based on medical criteria. The entire treatment is repeated once a year after completing the first series.
What’s does a peeling feel like?
During the procedure you may notice a slight tingling sensation; the deeper the peel, the more intense the sensation. In rare cases there may be signs of tearing, redness, swelling or crusting.
What Home Care comes after a peeling?
After beginning treatment, it is obligatory to use sunscreen and avoid direct sunlight. Each patient will have a personalized treatment and recommendations for personal upkeep, which can range from applying specialized creams or taking dietary supplements to improve the specific problem presented in the patient’s skin. You should follow the advice of your skin doctor to avoid bacterial infections, herpes, scars, pigmentation disorders and/or allergies. In case you want to use makeup is advisable to wait at least 30 minutes after a peeling for the skin pH to go back to normal. The patient should refrain from being exposed to heat, saunas or physical exercise until your doctor tells him/her it is appropriate.
What are the complications of peelings?
They are rare, but in few cases there have been a reactivation of latent herpes, persistent erythema, seborrhea erythema, striped erythema in cases of peeling with resorcinol, burns, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, enlightened skin color, infection, scarring, acne form eruptions, peeling resorcinol or allergic reactions.
How long will the results last of a peeling?
It depends on the number of treatments required and the type of peeling applied. In the media peels a single application is sufficient to see significant changes. The deeper the peel, the longer lasting the results, without forgetting that the aging process will continue.