Chemical Peel Types
At The Skin Center Medical Spa in Columbus and Pittsburgh, a chemical peel is used to help improve a multitude of complexion concerns. An individual''s skin color, skin type, degree of sun damage and personal expectations help determine which chemical peel is most appropriate.
Various types and concentrations of chemical solutions are used to penetrate different levels and produce different aesthetic results. Generally, there are three types of chemical peels:
- Light Chemical Peel
- Medium Chemical Peel
- Deep Chemical Peel
Light Chemical Peel
Light Chemical Peel solutions contain low concentrations of non-buffered Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) or light Jessner’s solution, which are the most commonly used facial skin-peeling agents. Also used are alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) - a group of naturally occurring acids, derived from certain plants and fruits.
Light Chemical Peels:
- Lighten freckles and age spots
- Help reverse UV damage
- Improve the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
- Brighten overall complexion
- Soften and smooth dry, rough skin
Light Chemical Facial Peel Treatment
A light chemical peel begins with thoroughly cleansing and drying the face. Next, the chemical solution is applied, during which time a warm sensation followed by mild stinging may be felt. The use of a hand held fan quickly alleviates any discomfort that may be felt.
Once the peeling agent is on the skin for several minutes, a white film, which is referred to as \"frost\", will develop, indicating how well the agent is penetrating. The solution is then removed after a pre-determined period of time.
Benefits of a Light Chemical Peel:
- Performed by a medical esthetician or nurse
- Quick 20-30 minute treatment
- Zero to three or four days downtime
- Can be performed on all skin types
Light Chemical Peel Post-Treatment Recovery
The downtime after a light chemical peel varies greatly from no downtime to three or four days, depending on the peel performed. Immediately following chemical peel treatment, a petrolatum-based gel will be applied to the face to promote healing and will need to be reapplied as necessary over the next several days as the damaged layers of skin deepen in color and flake or peel off, revealing a softer, smoother complexion.
Medium Chemical Peels
The medium chemical peel involves the use of concentrated Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) and Jessner’s solution and can correct moderate skin conditions experienced by individuals in their late thirties and forties.
Medium Chemical Peels:
- Brighten dull, drab complexions
- Diminish fine lines and wrinkles
- Help to prevent acne
- Improve the appearance of acne scarring
- Reverse UV damage
- Lighten freckles and age spots
- Improve discoloration related to melasma
Medium Chemical Peel Treatment
At The Skin Center Medical Spa locations in Columbus and Pittsburgh, medium chemical peel treatments are performed in an outpatient surgical center. No anesthesia is necessary; however a mild oral sedative is administered prior to the chemical peel treatment. Individuals usually feel a warm or slight burning sensation, which is quickly alleviated with a cool fan. The chemical peel usually takes about 15 to 20 minutes to perform. When deeper lines and wrinkles are addressed with a more concentrated chemical peel solution, a medium chemical peel may last up 45 minutes.
Benefits of a Medium Chemical Peel:
- Quick 20-30 minute treatment
- Provides dramatic improvement in skin color and texture
- Corrects multiple skin conditions in one visit
- Firms and brightens skin
- Improvement is seen in 7-10 days
Medium Chemical Peel Post-Treatment Recovery
After a medium chemical peel, a petrolatum-based gel will be applied to the face to promote healing and minimize scabbing. The gel will need to be reapplied as necessary for the next nine days.
During the medium chemical peel recovery period, which is generally two weeks, varying degrees of swelling will occur. The damaged skin will dry and peel off in layers within three or four days. As the new skin emerges, after about a week, normal activities may be resumed, however, the skin will be very pink before fading back to a normal color.
It is important that sun exposure is avoided for several months after the medium chemical facial peel to protect the newly formed layers of skin. Daily use of a sunblock with both UVA and UVB protection is essential. In Pittsburgh and Columbus, medium chemical peels are most popular during the fall and winter months so direct sun exposure can be avoided. However, the chemical peels can be performed year-round.
Deep Chemical Peel
A deep chemical peel uses a solution called Phenol, which penetrates to the deeper layers of the skin. Deep chemical peels are usually performed once and produce dramatic, long-term results.
Deep Chemical Peel:
- Diminishes fine, medium and deep coarse wrinkles
- Improves severe pigment conditions
- Offers dramatic improvement
- Minimizes Scarring
- Reduces Precancerous growths
- Offers skin tightening and firming
- Can erase up to five or ten years from one''s appearance
Deep Chemical Peel Treatment
The deep chemical peel is performed in The Skin Center Medical Spa''s outpatient surgical center. Typically, a deep chemical peel takes about an hour, while a deep chemical peel to a smaller area on the face, such as the upper lip, may take only 20 minutes.
Some types of deep chemical facial peel treatments may lighten dark skin tones permanently*; therefore they may not recommended for darker skinned individuals such Hispanics, East Indians, Asians and African Americans.
In Pittsburgh, deep chemical peels are performed by board-certified cosmetic surgeon Dominic Brandy, MD in our state-licensed and AAAHC —accredited outpatient surgical center located in Mt. Lebanon, PA.
In Columbus, a deep chemical peel is performed by board-certified plastic surgeon, Fernando Colon, MD in our outpatient surgery center located in Gahanna, OH.
Deep Chemical Peel Post-Treatment Recovery
Following a deep chemical peel treatment, a petrolatum-based gel is applied to the face to promote healing and minimize scabbing. The gel will need to be reapplied periodically for the next several days.
The initial recovery period with a Deep Chemical Peel is approximately 10 days to two weeks. A mild pain medication may be prescribed to relieve any discomfort, however, over-the-counter pain relievers are usually all that is needed.
During the recovery from a Deep Chemical Peel, swelling and oozing may occur the first week as the damaged layers of skin dry and peel off. As the new skin cells emerge, the face will be very red at first, gradually fading to a pinkish color over the next few weeks. It may take up to three months for the pinkness to completely subside; however, it can be corrected with camouflage makeup provided.
After two weeks, the treated skin will be healed enough so that normal activities can be resumed and makeup worn. To protect the delicate new skin, a UVA and UVB sunblock must be used at all times.