A chemical peel is a technique used to improve the appearance of your skin on the face, hands, and neck. A chemical solution will be applied to the skin that’ll cause it to exfoliate and peel off eventually. The new, regenerated skin will be less wrinkled and smoother than the old skin. The new skin will also be more sensitive to the sun temporarily.
Generally, there are three types of chemical peels –
Alpha-hydroxy acid or mild acid is used for penetrating the outer layer of your skin to gently exfoliate it. The treatment is useful in improving the appearance of rough skin and mild skin discoloration as well as to give your face, neck, hands, or chest a refreshed look.
Trichloroacetic acid or Glycolic acid is applied to penetrate the middle layers of the skin and remove damaged skin cells. Chemical Peel treatment is used to get rid of wrinkles, freckles, age spots, fine lines, and moderate skin discoloration. It is also useful in smoothening rough skin and treat precancerous skin growths.
Phenol or trichloroacetic acid application helps to penetrate the middle layer of the skin deeply to remove damaged skin cells. This treatment will remove moderate lines, freckles, age spots, and shallow scars. The patients will also be able to notice a dramatic improvement in skin appearance. The procedure works well on the face, neck, and other regions and you can repeat it once.
Who will be a viable candidate for a Chemical Peel Session?
Generally, light-haired and fair-skinned patients are better candidates for chemical peels. If you have darker skin, you can also experience great results depending upon the type of problem that you are treating. But you may also be more likely to have uneven skin after the procedure.
Bulges, skin bags, and severe wrinkles don’t respond well to chemical peels. They might need other kinds of surgical procedures such as a facelift, laser resurfacing, eyelid lift, brow lift, or soft tissue filler. A dermatologic surgeon will help you determine the most appropriate type of treatment for your situation.
The procedure involved with Chemical Peel Technique
Before you begin your procedure, you’ll need to have a consultation with a skincare specialist. During the visit, they’ll help you determine the best treatment option for you. They’ll let you know all the important details about the specific peel that you’ll be getting. They’ll inquire about everything that can interfere with the peel. This may also include whether you’re taking any acne medication and information about whether or not you get scars easily.
Before the chemical peel session, you must –
- Not make use of any retin or retinol, a topical medication for 48 hours at least
- Inform your skincare specialist about the medications that you take
- Not have been on Accutane for a minimum of six months
If your skincare specialist prescribes a sedative or painkiller, take it according to the instructions provided by them. You’ll likely have to take it before coming to the office.
How chemical peels are done?
Getting a chemical peel in a surgery center or a doctor’s office is easy. It is an outpatient procedure which means there is no overnight stay involved. The professionals who perform the chemical peels will first clean your skin thoroughly. Then, they’ll apply chemical solutions such as glycolic acid, salicylic acid, trichloroacetic acid, carbolic acid, lactic acid, to small areas of the skin. This will create a controlled wound, letting the new skin take its place.
During the chemical peel, people will feel a burning sensation that’ll last around five to ten minutes followed by a stinging sensation. You can ease the stinging sensation by putting cool compresses on the skin. You might need pain medication during or after the chemical peel.
What to expect during the recovery process?
Recovery time will vary depending on the type of chemical peel you’ll receive.
Light chemical peels – The recovery time with light chemical peels will be about four to seven days. Your skin might temporarily be lighter or darker.
Medium chemical peels – Your skin will need about five to seven days to recover after a medium chemical peel, though you might have redness that’ll persist for months. You will experience some swelling and then crusts and brown blotches might appear before the new skin appears.
Deep chemical peels – A deep chemical peel causes redness and severe swelling, with burning or throbbing sensations. It is common for the patient’s eyelids to swell shut. it’ll take around 2-3 weeks for the new layer of skin to develop though cysts or white spots might last several weeks. The redness, however, can last for several months.
Will you experience any reactions?
Depending on the type of chemical peels you undergo, a reaction similar to sunburn will occur following the procedure. Chemical peel generally involves redness, followed by scaling that lasts for three to seven days.
Mild peels can be repeated in one to four-week intervals until you get what you’re looking for. Medium and deep peeling can result in swelling and blisters that may break, turn brown, and peel off over a period of 7-14 days. Medium peels can be a repeat process in 6-12 months, if necessary.
After treatment, you’ll need bandages for several days or week weeks on the part of your skin that was treated. You must avoid exposing that part of your skin for several months after the chemical peel session since your new skin will be fragile.
Conclusion – The final verdict
Chemical peels are generally a cosmetic procedure and the insurance companies rarely cover it. You’ll have to pay for the procedure out of your pocket. However, your initial consultation visit can be under coverage of insurance companies. The cost of the cosmetic procedure will vary depending on different factors like the location the expertise of the professionals, and the type of peel you wish to get. Light peels cost as low as $150 while deep peels can cost as high as $3000 or more.