A chemical peel is a non-surgical technique used to transform the texture of the skin.
Because our facial skin, neck, and hands are most often exposed to UV rays and day-to-day wear and tear, these areas typically begin to exhibit the visible signs of ageing before other parts of the body. A chemical peel is an effective way to rejuvenate the complexion and restore the vitality of fresh, young-looking skin.
During a chemical peel, a topical chemical solution is applied to the treatment area that exfoliates the uppermost layers of the skin. As a result of this process, the skin’s natural renewal process is triggered, causing a boost in collagen and elastin production. Furthermore, as the surface layer of the skin is gently exfoliated away, skin abnormalities are reduced, revealing the fresh and healthy skin underneath.
When considering your options for a chemical peel, it is helpful to understand the different types of peels that patients choose and how they work.
Chemical peels are typically divided into 3 broad categories – light, medium, and deep peels. At our clinic, we offer a variety of light, medium, and combination peels that can be adjusted to varying strengths, addressing each client’s individual needs and goals.
Alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) is a mild type of acid used for a chemical peel. It typically affects only the most superficial layer of the skin. Because of its mild nature, it is typically well tolerated by all skin types, as it uses gentle exfoliation to treat the skin. This type of peel is best suited to patients looking to rejuvenate dull or tired-looking skin, fine lines, and mild acne. Since this type of solution is milder than others, depending on the amount of product applied and individual skin sensitivity, usually only minimal to no skin flaking occurs following the treatment.
Glycolic acid is another type of mild AHA that, when used in low strengths, usually results in no side effects such as redness or peeling. This type of peel is typically suitable for all skin types and ages, including sensitive skin. Glycolic acid peels are effective for treating fine lines, wrinkles, and acne by reducing the oiliness of the skin. The ideal candidates for this type of chemical peel are people who are looking for quick skin rejuvenation without any side effects such as redness and flaking.
Another option for a light peel is salicylic acid. This type also targets the superficial layer of the skin and is a gentle peel that treats skin conditions like acne due to its ability to unclog pores and treat oily skin. A salicylic acid peel is also an effective means to reverse the visible signs of ageing such as fine lines, wrinkles, and pigmentation issues. Due to its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, a salicylic acid peel is often soothing, not harsh, on oily and acne-prone skin.
A lactic acid peel is another mild type of AHA. Since lactic acid is derived from milk products, it is often called a “starter peel” and is ideal for patients who have never had a peel before or who have sensitive skin. Lactic acid peels help the skin maintain its ideal pH factor. Despite their gentle nature, lactic acid peels are still able to provide many of the benefits of other chemical peels. This type of peel is typically beneficial for mature dry and oily skin. Since it is one of the mildest and gentlest peels, more than one treatment is usually needed to produce optimal results. Lactic acid peels spaced around 4 to 6 weeks apart are usually an effective means to yield the best results. Any redness or flaking experienced following this type of peel is typically resolved within 2 to 3 days.
Medium-strength peels include glycolic and trichloroacetic acid (TCA). These types of peels penetrate the superficial as well as the middle layers of the skin to exfoliate damaged, aged skin cells. As TCA peels are more aggressive than AHA peels, they provide more dramatic results. However, the recovery time for a medium chemical peel is longer due to the skin redness and peeling that occurs. These side effects typically last around one week. TCA peels are usually used to target skin concerns such as melasma, brown spots or age spots, sun damage, and some types of acne and fine lines.
TCA is a relative of vinegar, which when applied to the skin, stimulates collagen and elastin formation, resulting in stronger and firmer-looking skin with fewer wrinkles. Mild acne and scarring can also be improved with TCA peels. With its ability to unclog pores, TCA also helps diminish acne breakouts. When TCA is applied to the skin, it causes the top layer of cells to dry up and gradually peel off, revealing a new layer of smooth and undamaged skin. The fresh skin that is unveiled shows reduced signs of melasma, freckles, and blemishes as well as other skin pigmentation and tone inconsistencies.
The recovery period will depend on the strength of the solution that is used, but it averages from 3 to 7 days. Following a medium peel, skin peeling usually lasts for around one week. It is usual for the skin to appear slightly red for the first 2 or 3 days following the peel. The skin that has been treated will likely be sore during this time, similar to severe sunburn, and will feel tight and slightly warm or swollen for the first few days. Within 3 to 5 days after the peel, the skin will begin to peel off in small sheets or flakes.
Treatment of Acne Scars With Fotona Fractional Laser
Acne scars can be a source of embarrassment and self-consciousness for many people. They can make you feel like you have to hide your face, which is why it’s so important to find a treatment that can help get rid of them. Fractional laser resurfacing is an excellent option for anyone who wants to improve the appearance of their skin and remove acne scars. This treatment uses a laser to create tiny wounds in the skin, which helps to stimulate the production of new collagen. This can help to improve the appearance of scars and make the skin look smoother and more even.
What are acne scars and why do they form?
Acne scars are a common skin concern that can occur after the pimples and inflammation of acne have healed. They’re the result of damaged skin tissue and can appear as sunken, raised, or thickened areas on the surface of the skin. Acne scars are usually permanent unless they’re treated with medical interventions like fraction laser.
The different types of acne scars
Acne scars can take on many different forms, depending on how they’ve formed. The most common types of acne scars are:
- Ice pick scars: These are small, deep scars that look like indentations in the skin. They’re caused by a loss of collagen and elastin in the skin.
- Boxcar scars: These are broader, shallower scars that have well-defined edges. They can be caused by a loss of collagen and elastin in the skin or by damage to the skin’s surface.
- Rolling scars: These are smooth, rolling depressions in the skin. They’re caused by a band of scar tissue that forms under the skin.
How does fractional laser resurfacing work?
Fractional laser resurfacing is a cosmetic procedure that uses a laser to create tiny wounds in the skin. This helps to stimulate the production of new collagen, which can improve the appearance of scars. The laser beam is divided into thousands of tiny microbeams, which target a small area of skin at a time. This treatment is effective because it only damages a small amount of tissue, so there’s minimal risk to the surrounding skin.
During your Fotona ablative treatment, you can expect the laser to cause some discomfort as it creates tiny wounds in your skin. This discomfort should subside within a few minutes after the treatment is over. You may also experience some redness and swelling, but this should also go away within a few days. It’s important to avoid sun exposure and use sunscreen after your treatment to help protect your skin.
The benefits of this treatment
Fractional laser resurfacing is an effective treatment for acne scars because it can help to improve the appearance of scars and make the skin look smoother. This treatment is also minimally invasive, so there’s minimal risk