A facial peel, commonly called a “chemical peel,” involves the use of a chemical solution to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin by removing its damaged outer layers. It is helpful for those individuals with facial blemishes, fine lines and wrinkles, shallow acne scars, and uneven skin pigmentation due to sun damage or aging. Chemical peels are classified as superficial, medium and deep, depending on the depth of penetration by the agent.
Superficial peels treat the outer layer of the skin called the epidermis and mildly stimulate collagen formation in the uppermost part of the dermis. With the use of Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) such as glycolic acids, this peel help to smooth dry and rough skin, improve the texture of sun-damaged skin, and even out skin tone.
Medium peels treat deeper layers of the skin (the dermis). The usual candidate for a medium peel is someone with fair skin. Medium peels can be used to treat a number of skin conditions, but they are most often used to treat the effects of sun damage including brown spots and wrinkles. Sometimes, a series of medium peels is required to achieve the best result.
Deep peels , accomplished by the use of phenol, produce the most dramatic results but are the most painful and require the most post-treatment care. Damage extends to the mid dermis. Normal activities are usually resumed after 2 weeks. After the scab heals, the skin appears red for 2 to 3 months. A single treatment is usually sufficient to provide the desired results.