“Chemical Peels – All You Need To Know “

Chemical Peels – All You Need To Know

Chemical peels remain the leading treatment to improve skin texture, lighten pigmentation (brown spots) diminish wrinkles and treat teenage and adult acne. New and improved formulas are available, meeting the needs of busy clients. Current technology promotes a progressive, rather than aggressive, approach, allowing for more advanced and results-driven treatments without the downtime.

Todays client is savvy and wants more than the traditional facial. 

With autumn around the corner, this is the best time to start a series of advanced treatments and chemical peels. 

There are several kinds of peels, including new peels that are great for improving the appearance of skin. 

I’ve noticed many clients are hesitant when they hear the term “Chemical Peel“ as they often believe them to be very invasive. 

I hope to explain in this week’s column what’s involved in face peels and why they are important in our skin care regime. 

A Brief History of Face Peels

Skin resurfacing for beauty has been in use for thousands of years.  

In Babylonia and India, women used pumice stones to exfoliate the top layer of the skin. 

During the Middle Ages, the first chemical peels were performed; women would soak cloths in lime, mustard, or sulphur to rejuvenate the appearance of the skin. 

Gypsies were reportedly the first group to use phenol for deep chemical peels, and they are known to have passed secret recipes down through the generations.  

Officially chemical peels were introduced in the second half of the 19th century by the Austrian dermatologist Ferdinand Ritter von Hebra. 

Today, they are an indispensable part of most aesthetic practices.

A Simple Guide to Face Peels

Most of us are clueless when it comes chemical peels. There are many kinds with different levels and variations. So here’s a simple guide that might help you in deciding which peels are right for your skin.


The most common peel. It reduces the appearance of fine lines, increases cell turn over rate, removes dead skin cells, and brightens the skin.

Suitable For: All skin types especially those with wrinkles and fine lines


This can penetrate deeper into skin. It helps control acne, eliminates blackheads and whiteheads, clarifies skin, and reduces pore blockage.

Suitable For: For those who are acne prone and have oily skin


This is a less irritating peel. It evens skin tone, lightens pigmentation and reduces the appearance of wrinkles and age spots, can be moisturising.

Suitable For: All skin types especially for hyper-pigmented skin


Stronger than Glycolic. It reduces the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines, and acne scars, skin tightening, large pores, sun-damaged skin.

Suitable For: Those with a lighter complexion

Fruit Enzyme 

Some are papaya, pineapple, pumpkin, etc. They promote cell renewal, anti-bacterial.

Suitable For: Rosacea, Dehydrated skin, Sensitive skin

pH Level

The pH level of the skin refers to how acidic or alkaline it is.

pH levels are very important for those who use acid based products like chemical peels. 

Your skin is made up of protein, water and other minor chemicals. Proteins are very complex chains of amino acids and are sensitive to the level of pH surrounding them. When the skin’s proteins react with an acid in a low pH, coagulation occurs.

The acid destroys the existing tissues so they can be replaced with new structures. The lower the pH – the stronger the acid – the more coagulation you will get – thus the more new tissues. Frosting is what you see when this process is happening. This is the goal of the chemical peel when treating skin.

Why Skin Preparation is important?

Before any treatment a consultation is recommended. To get the best results normally home care will be advised for approximately 2 weeks before your peels. This will entail using a cleanser, SPF cream, a serum & night time cream.

This prepares the skin for the peels procedure with irritation reduced to a minimum.

By doing this we will get the skin in good health which helps the healing process. It also reduces post inflammatory hyper pigmentation.

How Often?

Generally it is good idea to buy a course of 4 to 6 peels, having a treatment every 2 to 4 weeks. 

If you suffer from acne there are some peels you can do every two weeks until you get the results you want.

While deeper peels were popular in the past, most people today simply do not have the time to sit at home while their skin sheds for 4-5 days. Lighter peels exfoliate the skin, and help to shed dead cells and impurities from the surface. When performed in a series, the skin becomes brighter, more even-toned, and smoother. In addition, peels can allow your current skin care products to absorb better, producing optimal results. Most treatments require only 30 minutes. Many people do not peel after a treatment, but may notice mild flaking for several days which can be easily concealed.  They are able to return to all normal activities immediately, with the exception of heavy exercise which should be avoided for two days.

Post Treatment :

After your treatment the following steps are recommended in order to achieve the best results

  1. You will receive a mandatory post treatment kit 
  2. Use SPF cream
  3. Avoid sun & heat
  4. Allow skin to shed on its own – do not assist 
  5. Avoid steam 
  6. Avoid glycolic, retinol, and lacid acids for 72 hours