What Are Chemical Peels? Your Top Questions Answered.
Radiance Medical Aesthetics and Wellness Spa – Burlington, Vermont
Spring Into Your Best Skin With A Chemical Peel!
Spring is right around the corner here in the Burlington, Vermont area! What better way to start the season than with some spring cleaning for your skin? Many medical spa treatments can be used to rejuvenate the skin, but there is one in particular that is one of the most popular facial treatments: Chemical Peels! In fact, the American Medical Spa Association ran a study which reported chemical peels are the #1 most popular medical spa treatment, surpassing Aesthetician Services, and Botox and Filler injections (Amspa Resouce).
Chemical peels are an effective, customizable, and safe way to refresh your skin for the new season ahead when performed by a licensed professional. However, they are not a one-size fits all solution, and it takes an experienced aesthetics professional to assure you are receiving a chemical peel that is right for your skin color, skin type, and skin goals. In this post, we’ll define chemical peels and answer commonly asked questions such as:
Are chemical peels safe?
Do chemical peels hurt?
How long does a chemical peel last?
How long does a chemical peel take?
How much does a chemical peel cost?
How to treat breakouts after a chemical peel?
Do chemical peels help with acne?
so you can best prepare and feel confident going into your next chemical peel treatment.
What Is A Chemical Peel?
A chemical peel is a non-invasive cosmetic procedure used to improve the appearance and health of the skin.
Chemical peels are solutions containing acids and ingredients to target certain skin concerns such as acne, age spots, fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, and sun damage.
The chemical solution is typically applied to the face, neck, chest, or back to regenerate the skin cells and exfoliate damaged or dead skin. Depending on the strength of the peel and the specific acids used you may or may not peel, but your skin not “peeling” does not mean that the chemical peel isn’t working. This is what we call chemical exfoliation, which is working deeper under the surface of the skin to resurface and improve the skin.
Why Are Chemical Peels Important?
A few reasons why chemical peels are important to include in your skincare treatment plan:
Customizable To You
Chemical peels can range from light to medium, to medical-grade strengths. Your esthetician can work with you to find the right peel strength and acids based on your skin concerns, the time of year, and the occasion. You can achieve amazing results and glowing skin with minimal to no downtime, or take it up a notch with a stronger chemical peel for boosted benefits.
Prevent and Correct
Chemical exfoliation is one of the important mechanisms in preventing and correcting skin aging and the appearance of aging.
Chemical peels can increase the benefits of other facial treatments when combined
Chemical peels can be used in conjunction with other popular skin treatments such as microdermabrasion, facials, and laser, to boost the benefits and results of your treatment. *Check out our Radiance Signature Laser Glow Peel which combines laser and peels with no downtime!
Chemical Peels – Frequently Asked Questions
With information and answers directly from our medical esthetician, Andria!
Q: Are chemical peels safe?
A: Yes, when done by a licensed, experienced, and trained professional. Chemical peels are safe and effective in exfoliating the skin and providing cell turnover to reveal brighter, healthier skin. Your skin type and skin color should be key factors when deciding what peel is right for you. Deeper skin tones must use more caution when receiving chemical peels due to an increased risk of hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation.
If you are new to chemical peels it is safest to start at a light to medium-strength peel and gradually build your way up to higher-strength peels. Your esthetician will also go over your medical history, any recent procedures, and pre/post-care instructions to ensure there are no contraindications preventing you from receiving a chemical peel treatment.
There is always a risk of an allergic reaction no matter the treatment or if you have had the treatment in the past with no reaction. It is important to tell your esthetician about any previous reactions, irritation, or allergies to food, skincare, or medications prior to your treatment. Overall, chemical peels are a safe way to improve signs of aging, acne, pigmentation, and sun-damaged skin. At Radiance we always take the extra step and time with our clients to provide safe and effective procedures.
Q: Do chemical peels hurt?
A: You may feel tingling, itching, or warming sensations, all of which are normal and subside after a few minutes. A hand-held fan is applied to the skin to help ease these sensations. This also depends on the ingredients used, the strength of the chemical peel, and the patient’s sensitivity level. Everyone’s pain tolerance is different, so it is best to be vocal if you are experiencing abnormal discomfort or pain, or if you are ready for an extra layer of your peel!
Q: How long does a chemical peel last?
A: This depends on the type of peel used. Most of the chemical peels here at Radiance offer immediate, as well as long-term results. Chemical peels play a role in comprehensive skin care plans as skin maintenance treatment. They can be used either in between your more intense skin procedures, such as HALO or BBL Laser, or can be added occasionally to your more mild facial treatments for boosted results.
You can expect to see the best results after 5-7 days, as long as you maintain those results with a proper skincare routine at home. Some mild flaking or peeling is common after the first few days, which is lessened by applying moisturizer liberally. Intervals for chemical peels also vary from patient to patient, and the type of peel used. Mild chemical peels are safe to be performed every 4 weeks (usually anywhere from 4-8 weeks is typical to maintain results and repair the skin during cell turnover cycles), while medium-depth peels can be done every 12 weeks.
Remember: a skincare treatment can only work as well as you do! Your overall health, wellness, and lifestyle also play a part in the outcome of your treatments. Proper diet, exercise, skincare, and sun protection are important in receiving the best results for any of your treatments. For additional tips on skin care check out our blog.
Q: How long does a chemical peel take?
A: A chemical peel by itself can be performed in as little as 10 minutes. When paired with a full facial, the timing is usually 45 minutes. Our Dermasweep treatment or dermaplane facial are also options that can physically exfoliate the surface of the skin and can be combined with a chemical peel. The physical exfoliation of the upper layers of the skin allows the chemical peel to bypass the barrier or build up of dead skin cells and penetrate deeper into the skin. These treatments can take 45 minutes to 1 hour. A Radiance Signature Laser Glow Peel is a great lunchtime laser facial that takes 30 minutes or less, and will leave your skin glowing immediately post-treatment! The laser painlessly vaporizes the first few layers of dead skin, similarly allowing the peel to penetrate better for enhanced results.
Q: How much does a chemical peel cost?
A: Chemical peels here at Radiance range from $150-$300. This depends on the strength of the peel performed. Prices can vary depending on whether the chemical peel is done alone or is added to another treatment (i.e. laser, microdermabrasion, dermaplaning, dermasweep, etc.) Again, chemical peels are very customizable, and it’s best to consult with your esthetician about your price range and skin goals to maximize your treatment plan and results.
Q: How to treat breakouts after a chemical peel?
A: Skin purging after a chemical peel is common if you’ve never had one before, or if you aren’t used to using exfoliating products in general. Think of it as your skin ridding itself of all the gunk brewing underneath the surface so it can expose the new, fresh, and radiant-looking skin. Waiting this “purging phase” out is your best bet. As you receive subsequent chemical peel treatments and your skin improves, the amount of purging should decrease as your skin becomes healthier over time. You don’t want to use any other AHA/BHA products for at least a week after having a peel to avoid over-exfoliation and irritation.
It is also incredibly important to go over what skincare products and skincare lines you are using with your esthetician. Your results could be negatively impacted if you are using improper skincare or skincare techniques. We suggest discussing our medical-grade skincare lines with your esthetician at your next appointment to ensure maximum benefits after your chemical peel!
Q: Do chemical peels help acne?
A: Chemical peels are great for improving acne, especially peels containing salicylic acid. Ingredients in peel solutions are working to create new cells that function properly, not only visibly improving the skin but also correcting from within. It is critical to note that while trying to improve acne, you also need to be using the appropriate products at home to maintain the results from your in-office treatments.
There is no doubt that chemical peels are one of our favorite esthetician services at Radiance for our patients. Say goodbye to dull winter skin and say hello to a glowing, radiant complexion. Like we always say, healthy skin is beautiful skin, and a spring refresh with a chemical peel is the perfect way to pamper your skin and prepare for the warmer months ahead with minimal to no downtime!
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5399 Williston Suite 101, Williston, VT 05495
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Author: Kendall Beiswanger, Radiance Business and Marketing Manager with assistance by Andria Testa, Medical Esthetician
Reviewed by: Dr. C. Parker, Aesthetic Medicine Physician