Which Chemical Peel is Best?


Chemical peel is a body and face treatment technique used to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin using a chemical solution that causes the dead skin to slough off and eventually peel off. The regenerated skin is usually smoother and less wrinkled than the old skin. Thus the term chemical peel is derived. There are many different types of these peels. Each type is designed to treat a specific skin problem or to simply improve one's look.






 which chemical peel is right for me





Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) are naturally occurring carboxylic acids such as glycolic acid, a natural constituent of sugar cane juice and lactic acid, found in sour milk and tomato juice. This is the mildest of the peel formulas and produces light peels for treatment of fine wrinkles, areas of dryness, uneven pigmentation and acne. Alpha hydroxy acids can also be mixed with a facial wash or cream in lesser concentrations as part of a daily skin-care regimen to improve the skin’s texture.  There are five usual fruit acids: citric acid, glycolic acidlactic acid, malic acid and tartaric acid. However, many other alpha hydroxy acids are known to exist.




  • Citric acid: These peels are simple and effective, although not incredibly invasive or capable of significant improvement with one treatment.

  • Glycolic acid: This acid creates a mild exfoliating action. Glycolic acid peels work by loosening up and exfoliating the superficial top layer. This peel also stimulates collagen growth.  High strength peels are good in terms of efficacy but they irritate more. Some glycolic peels claim the use of strontium nitrate in order to try to reduce skin irritation. Nevertheless, strontium nitrate is a product which is strictly prohibited in cosmetic products since it has a high toxic potential

  • Lactic acid: This peel will remove dead skin cells, and promote healthier skin.

  • Malic acid: This peel is the same type of mildly invasive peel and can open up the pores, allow the pores to expel their sebum and reduce acne.

  • Tartaric acid: This is acid is capable of delivering the same benefits as the above peels.




Beta hydroxy peels have also become popular in UK recently. The only beta hydroxy acid (BHA) currently used for chemical peels right now is salicylic acid. It is a very effective pore cleanser and a peeling agent due to its lipophilic chemistry. Because salicylic acid is fat soluble, it is able to penetrate sebum filled follicles and clogged pores. This makes it an ideal agent for acne prone skin. When used in higher concentrations in chemical peels, salicylic acid helps control acne breakouts, reduces discolouration, improves sun damages skin, and results in an over-all healthier looking appearance. In addition to that, salicylic peels also provide the typical anti-aging effect, similar to glycolic peels. Overall, salicylic peel is perfect for people with oily and acne prone skin.







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Trichloroacetic acid (TCA Peel) is used as an intermediate to deep peeling agent in concentrations ranging from 20-50%. Depth of penetration is increased as concentration increases, with 50% TCA penetrating into the reticular dermis. Concentrations higher than 35% are not recommended because of the high risk of scarring.



Trichloroacetic acid peels:


  • are preferred for darker-skinned patients over Phenol

  • smooth out fine surface wrinkles

  • remove superficial blemishes

  • correct skin pigment problems






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Trichloroacetic acid peels may:



  • require pre-treatment with Retin-A or AHA creams

  • require repeat treatment to maintain results

  • require the use of sunblock for several months (this is a must)

  • take several days to heal depending on the peel depth



Phenol is the strongest of the chemical solutions and produces a deep skin peel. Some publications claim that phenol peel affect could be due to the action of croton oil and that phenol would not be effective without this oil. In reality, many phenol peel solutions exist that do not contain croton oil. This last is only a penetration enhancer, acting at the epidermal very superficial layers. Croton oil is not the only penetration enhancer that can be used. Effects of a phenol chemical peel are long lasting, and in some cases are still readily apparent up to 20 years following the procedure.  Improvements in the patient’s skin can be quite dramatic. A single treatment usually achieves the desired result.




Phenol peels are used to:



  • correct blotches caused by sun exposure or aging

  • smooth out coarse deep wrinkles

  • remove precancerous growths



Phenol peels may:



  • pose a risk of arrythmias if applied without following strict rules

  • permanently remove facial freckles

  • many formulas cause permanent skin lightening by reducing the ability to produce pigment

  • require increased protection from the sun permanently








There are certain conditions that may require postponement of your peel.


These include:


• accutane within the past year


• inflamed acne lesions


• open cuts or scratches on your face


• any facial surgery within three months, including a facelift or eyelid surgery


recent or upcoming intense sun exposure




In addition, if you are under severe physical or mental stress, it is not a good time for a peel.  It is important that you can devote all of your energies to your peel and are not distracted by other physical or mental needs.



It is extremely important that you do not pick, scratch, pull or rub your skin during your peel. If you do, you may damage the underlying new skin and cause scarring or changes in your pigmentation.




Who is a good candidate for a chemical peel? Chemical peel is indeed an effective treatment for acne, acne scars, uneven pigmentation, and deep wrinkles. If you suffer from one of these skin conditions, a facial peel is definitely something to consider. If you feel your condition is too severe to be treated with commercial products, consult with a plastic surgeon or dermatologist. They will help you decide which peel is best for you.  As with all things in life, you should have realistic expectations. Face peels can dramatically improve the appearance of your skin, but they are not a cure for chronic skin conditions and they do little for deep scarring.  The results you do experience will not last forever, so subsequent treatments will be necessary.








Каштан Фарма