As we approach the Autumn and Winter months, now might be the time to start thinking about investing in a course of chemical peels. The cooler weather and lack of sun/going away on holiday means that this time of year is more popular for peels.
So what are the benefits of a chemical peel, and how do they work?
A chemical peel is a cocktail of different chemicals and other ingredients that help to exfoliate your skin, improve texture and clear built-up dirt and excess sebum. The skin’s natural PH level is around 5.5, and peels are around 3.8. By changing the PH level, it loosens the cells that form the “glue” between dead skin and your healthy skin. All peels remove the top layer of your skin, the “epidermis”, and the stronger peels will also affect the layer just underneath, the “dermis”. If you have deeper acne scarring, ageing or Hyperpigmentation issues, then a stronger, deeper peel would be better for you. But always consult with your Therapist first, and go in for a pre-treatment consultation.
How are peels performed?
Most peels pretty much work in the same way, but from brand to brand, their protocols of their treatments will be slightly different. They may also come in different timings. For example, at our salon in Lichfield, we offer a Dermalogica 30 or 60 minute peel. We also offer the MediK8 peels, but they are 45 minutes. In each treatment we clean and prep the skin, apply the peel, neutralise and then remove it. In the longer treatments, we may pop on an additional soothing face mask, and perform a little bit of a scalp or hand and arm massage whilst the skin cools down. Finally, finishing products such as serum, moisturiser and SPF are applied.
What do I need to do before and after the treatment?
Some brands require you to use certain products before their treatment, for around 2-4 weeks, to prep your skin and ensure it is in a good condition to receive the peel. I advise my clients before the treatment to not use the sunbeds, go in direct, heavy sunlight or apply any chemical/physical exfoliants for 2 days before the treatment and to come in with minimal to no make-up on. For after the treatment (our salon has a written guide we show to clients as well) but I suggest to not wear any make-up, fake tan or go for a spray tan for 24 hours after the treatment. Do not exfoliate for three days after the treatment. To always wear at least an SPF 30, if not an SPF 50. If they are going to go into direct, heavy sunlight, then to wear a wide brim hat as well. Also, to not go on any sunbeds for the duration of their course of their chemical peel.
How long will it take to see results?
I always say to clients that Peels are so good, they will see a result after just one treatment. However, to get the best result, and the longest lasting result, then to have a course. The amount of peels per course and the space between each one is often dictated by the brand you’re using, as they’re all formulated differently. But for example, one peel every 10-14 days for 12 weeks. This is quite an intense course, but is designed for someone wanting to achieve long-lasting results.
So, if acne, acne scarring, ageing, dark spots or overall texture of your skin is concerning you, then a Chemical Peel might be the right treatment choice for you. It may sound a little daunting, but I know so many clients who have got amazing, long-lasting results from a course of these types of treatments.