Your Face Loves a Chemical Peel
- Posted on: Jan 30 2018
Humans have been trying to peel away their dull, damaged skin for hundreds of years. It’s thought that Cleopatra was the first proponent of chemical peels for her famous visage. She was said to bathe in sour milk to take advantage of the lactic acid’s skin peeling/refreshing characteristics.
Today, you won’t need a clothespin for your nose to endure a chemical peel at Dr. Lipton’s. We use various peeling agents to basically force your outer layers of skin to exfoliate themselves. This changeover of old and new skin cells is the key to younger, healthy skin.
What are chemical peels?
While the name is somewhat frightening, chemical peels are really nothing more than the application of a peeling agent to speed up what the skin does all the time — exfoliate. Our skin consists of three layers: the epidermis, the dermis, and the fat layer. Unlike most of our other organs, our skin is constantly at the mercy of the environment, damaged by the sun, the wind, lack of humidity, and other environmental factors. Personal choices such as smoking beat up the skin, as well. As a mechanism to overcome damage, the skin is constantly shedding. Our entire epidermis layer replaces itself once every month.
Chemical peels simply give the process a little boost. By applying a chemical to the face that makes the outer layers peel, younger, healthier skin cells replace the older, damaged skin. In the process, age spots, acne scars, fine lines, dead skin cells, and other skin imperfections are peeled away.
What skin issues can be improved with a chemical peel?
Chemical peels vary by the peeling agent. These are skin conditions we address:
- Sun damage
- Skin texture problems
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Acne scars
- Scaly patches
- Uneven pigmentation
- Age spots
Types of peels
We specialize in light and medium peels at Dr. Lipton’s, along with the less frequent deep peels.
- Light/superficial chemical peels
Light chemical peels are excellent for exfoliating the outermost layer of the epidermis, removing dead and damaged skin cells and returning a glow to the skin. For these chemical peels, the peeling agents are natural in origin. These acids are in the alpha-hydroxy family: glycolic acid, lactic acid, and salicyclic acid. These acids come from sources such as sugar cane, citrus, grapes, or sugar beets for glycolic acid; sour milk for lactic acid; or other plants for salicyclic acid.
- Medium chemical peels
We also offer more aggressive peels that require some recovery. Medium-depth peels penetrate more deeply, into the dermis layer. We use them to treat acne scars, deeper wrinkles, and uneven pigmentation. The peeling agent with our medium peels is trichloroacetic acid.
Unlike superficial peels, which really don’t require any recovery, there will be some recovery with a medium peel. They leave the skin red and stinging, and there will be some crusting. Facial redness can linger for up to a few weeks. You can have three or four medium peels in a year. Think of it as basically one per season.
- Deep chemical peels
We also occasionally perform deep peels with phenol acid as the peeling agent. Deep peels require a fairly involved recovery process due to their aggressive peeling. They are excellent at addressing serious acne scarring, but potential patients should do their research, including a consultation with Dr. Lipton, before opting for a deep peel. Patients can only have a single deep peel during their lifetime.
Posted in: Facelift