Mild Chemical Peels

July 19, 2012

Since our current special is $15 Mild Chemical Peels, we thought you might like to know how you might benefit from this treatment. Read on to find out more about the peels we use; if you have other questions about anti-aging for your skin, we would love to answer them while your skin is being “refreshed.”

Although one Chemical Peel brings some improvement (mainly leaving the skin softer and more refreshed), several treatments are needed to see maximum results when treating any condition. Many different chemical peels exist; therefore the condition treated determines which peel is used.

Acne (including blackheads and whiteheads)

One of the best chemical agents used to treat acne is salicylic acid (SA).  SA dissolves dead skin cells and oil plugs that get stuck in the pores, which over time prevents acne and evens out post-inflammatory pigmentation.  SA can have more noticeable after-effects; therefore this is not always used in the treatment of acne.  On the day of treatment the skin is slightly red; and three to four days later might show mild to moderate flaking, especially around the mouth.

Glycolic acid (GA) is also very effective in the treatment of acne.  Because GA is made up of much smaller molecules, it is less irritating to the skin.  It dissolves the dead skin and oil that get stuck in the pores, much like SA, and also leaves the skin a little pink.  The post-peel flaking is a usually a little less noticeable with GA.

Lactic Acid is a milder, more moisture-preserving agent, and also serves to dissolve the dead skin and mild clogging in the pores.  This is a wonderful choice for those who suffer from dry skin associated with eczema.  Because it is a milder agent, the post-peel effects on the skin are typically mild, with some slight pinkness and only mild sloughing (sometimes not even noticeable to the naked eye).

It is worth mentioning that there is no treatment highly effective for reducing pore size; however, if the pore is enlarged due to the presence of oil (sebum) and dead skin cells, any treatment that is effective in unclogging pores will help reduce the size of them.

Actinic (Sun) Damage

Sun damage includes pigment changes, splotchy or crepe paper-like skin, and mild to moderate wrinkling. GA and Lactic Acid (mentioned above) are both used from time to time for correction of this.  Another agent used for Actinic Damage is a modified Jessner’s solution (salicylic acid, lactic acid, and resorcinol).  This is best used on light to medium colored skin.  Post-treatment redness and flaking can be slightly greater when using this agent.

Trichloracetic Acid (TCA) is occasionally used for the treatment of sun damage, but is much stronger; therefore, post-treatment skin can be much redder, and true peeling, rather than mild flaking, can occur.  The use of this agent depends largely on the patient’s overall goals, schedule, skin type, etc.