Let’s Demystify Chemical Peels

Let’s demystify chemical peels — one of the most effective cosmetic treatments available

The term “chemical peel” may sound scarily invasive, but the truth is that the procedure is a safe and effective way to diminish many signs of aging on the face, including brown spots, discoloration, lines and wrinkles, as well as treatment for acne scarring.

Chemical peels are also known as chemical exfoliation, using a solution to remove the outer layer of skin.

 Whether you receive a chemical peel to diminish signs of aging or treat a skin condition, you can see:

  • Fewer lines and wrinkles
  • More even skin color
  • Brighter complexion
  • Smoother, healthier skin

Dermatologists use chemical peels to treat the following:

  • Acne (some types)
  • Age spots
  • Discoloration (blotchy complexion, uneven skin tone)
  • Dull complexion
  • Fine lines (especially under the eyes and around the mouth)
  • Freckles
  • Melasma
  • Rough-feeling skin
  • Sun-damaged skin

Of course, some chemical peels require downtime. In general, the time to heal, and potentially adverse reactions, increase with the depth of the peel. Work with your doctor to determine the depth of your peel. This decision depends upon the condition of your skin and your goals for treatment.

Chemical peels range in depth from superficial, medium and deep. Superficial chemical peels exfoliate only the top layer of skin, while medium and deep peels exfoliate into the upper and mid dermis, respectively.

 Superficial chemical peels are effective for mild texture irregularity and evening out skin tone, while medium to deep chemical peels are effective for skin tightening, treatment of sun spots, acne scars and diminishing fine lines and wrinkles.

 At Parasol we perform medium depth and deep chemical peels to maximize patient results.

Medium depth peels treat fine surface wrinkles, superficial blemishes and pigment problems using trichloroacetic acid (TCA) at different strengths depending on desired outcomes. TCA peels are very versatile and can be used alone or in combination with a deep chemical peel. Typically, concentrations between 20-35 percent TCA require 1-2 weeks of downtime. Results are seen within a week and results may last for several years.

Deep chemical peels permeate much deeper into the skin to cause substantial skin exfoliation, and is usually accomplished with Hetter formula. Differing strengths of Hetter formula have been successful in treating acne scarring, skin discoloration, wrinkling and sun damage. This specific peel is known as a deep peeling agent and is not advised for individuals with darker skin types. The aesthetic outcomes of this method are often considerable given its capacity to rectify substantial skin damage, and can even be used as an alternative to an upper eyelid lift (medically termed upper blepharoplasty). It is also a wonderful alternative to fillers for deep lines around the mouth and can be applied to the lips to naturally enhance their size.

From a patient’s perspective, it is important to choose the right procedure for you, depending on your concerns and desired outcomes. Dr. Bolante and her team at Parasol stand ready to provide a detailed consultation about chemical peels and whether or not you are a candidate for the procedure. Give us a call at (831) 574-8425.