More Than Just A Chemical Peel

Glycolic Acid Peel – More Than Just A Chemical Peel

BACKGROUND

As the name suggests, a chemical peel is a type of treatment using a chemical solution which has an exfoliant effect and causes the dead skin cells to be sloughed off.  So the effect is equivalent to peeling off the surface layer of the skin.

A chemical peel yields immediate and visible results revealing a softer and smoother skin compared to before the peel.

There are several types of chemical peels available depending on the ingredient(s) they contain.  Some types of chemical peels can be purchased and used as at home.  However, as a trained professional, I would advise people to seek professional help from a dermatologist or medical aesthetician regarding specific types of chemical peels before attempting any chemical peel procedures at home.

Alpha-hydroxy acid (AHA) is one of ingredients commonly found in chemical peels.  AHAs are naturally occurring carboxylic acids derived from fruit and milk sugars – they include glycolic acid (sugar cane), lactic acid (milk), citric acid (citrus fruit) and malic acid (apples) among others, used for treatment of skin conditions.

 

BENEFITS OF ALPHA-HYDROXY ACID

Studies have found that AHAs can

  • promote softer, smoother skin
  • fade wrinkles
  • lighten age spots
  • decrease blemishes

 

HOW ALPHA-HYDROXY ACID WORKS

AHAs act on the 2 uppermost layers of the skin known as the epidermis and dermis.  When applied to the skin, AHAs stimulate the exfoliation of the outermost layer of the epidermal cells by loosening the bonds between these cells.  This results in the sloughing off of dull, rough skin and promotes cell renewal.

 

GLYCOLIC ACID

Glycolic acid molecule

Glycolic acid is the smallest of the alpha hydroxy acid molecules.  Due to its smaller molecular size, it is able to penetrate into the skin better and hence more effective for skincare.

In addition to chemical peels, there are also many glycolic acid skincare products which can be used at home as part of your daily skincare routine to enhance the benefits of a chemical peel.

 

GLYCOLIC ACID PEEL (GAP)

GAP is an effective treatment for all skin types, including rapid improvement and restores normal-looking skin.  It is now widely used in a variety of strengths, ranging from 20% to 70%, depending on the skin condition being treated.

After a GAP procedure, most people can continue day to day activities as there is zero downtime.  Make up can be applied a few hours after the procedure.  When used with caution and according to the directions, GAP is generally safe.

 

WHY CHOOSE GLYCOLIC ACID PEEL?

  • GAP is a safe, effective and economical procedure providing a therapeutic effect on different skin conditions.
  • It can be used as an adjunctive therapy for acne, scarring, photo damage and hyper-pigmentation disorders.
  • People of any skin type and colour can undergo GAP.
  • It is a non-surgical skin rejuvenation.
  • Almost any area of the body can be treated using glycolic acid.
  • It is a quick lunchtime procedure which takes only about half an hour.
  • It has immediate visible results.
  • It is low cost.

 

EVALUATION

Before undergoing a glycolic acid peel it is recommended that you have your medical history reviewed by a medical professional.  You should not have a chemical peel if you:

  • used Accutane (oral isotretinoin) within the past 6 months
  • used Retin-A (topical tretinoin) within the past 7 days
  • used any scrub or skin irritant within the last 24 hours
  • have active herpes simplex (cold sores)
  • have facial warts and / or fungal infections
  • form keloid or hypertrophic scars easily
  • have a history of sun allergies
  • had prior bad reaction to a peel
  • had recent radiation treatment for cancer
  • had sunburn or significant sun exposure in the last 2 days
  • had surgery or cryosurgery within the last month
  • have any other chemical peel within the past 21 days
  • have eczema or rosacea
  • have any signs of broken skin
  • shaved on the day of peel
  • are pregnant

In subsequent posts, I will be discussing about pre-peel preparation, basic steps for glycolic acid peel, post-peel care and essential follow-on homecare products.

I would love to hear from you!

Please feel free to comment below or contact me via e-mail.

 

Sue

 

Founder of achemicalpeel.com

E-mail: info@achemicalpeel.com

 

 

 


22 Comments

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