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So You Want A Chemical Peel Treatment?

Are you interested in getting a chemical peel? Well, here’s a little information to educate you on how chemical peels work, the benefits of chemical peels, ideal candidates for peels, the different types of peels, the contraindications, and side effects.




A chemical peel is a controlled application of chemicals to the skin or a controlled chemical burn essentially. Chemical peels work by removing the top layers of skin, or epidermis, (sometimes deeper into the dermis depending on the strength of the peel), to reveal smoother and brighter skin. Some benefits of chemical peels include minimization of hyperpigmentation from sun damage, age spots, acne, blackheads, acne scarring, fine lines, wrinkles, and brightening of the skin.

A good candidate would be someone who is already taking good care of their skin, wants to improve tone and texture, fine lines and wrinkles, hyperpigmentation or acne. A client that doesn’t pick at their skin, wears sunscreen, gets regular facials, and is willing to stop their at home exfoliants during the peeling process would be ideal.

Types of chemical peels include, BHA, AHA, TCA, and phenol peels. BHA (salicylic acid) and AHA (lactic, mandelic, glycolic acids) are light peels. TCA is a medium peel, and phenol is a deep peel, done in dermatologist offices. Someone who doesn’t have the downtime to do a TCA or phenol peel, would not be good candidates for these deeper peels because of the intense peeling.

Some contraindications for chemical peels would be, working out in the sun, or not wearing sunscreen, having active sores; such as herpes simplex viruses. A client who picks at their skin, has recently used retinols, or other chemical exfoliants, and/or someone who isn’t willing to take a break from their exfoliants while healing from their peel, would not be considered. Ingredient allergies would also be a contraindication. For example, if someone has an allergy to aspirin, a salicylic peel would be out of the question, and anyone who is nursing or pregnant or is currently on Accutane, or it’s been less than 6 months since their Accutane treatment. Also, if the client has extremely sensitive skin or rosacea; that could be considered a contraindication; though some people with rosacea can receive a chemical peel, but it’s on a case by case basis. Eczema and psoriasis, or a weak immune system could also be contrindiations.

Chemical peels are a great way to reach fast results when struggling with stubborn acne and hyperpigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, age spots and sun spots, texture and scarring. If you’ve considered getting a peel, your esthetician should be able to find the right peel for your skin type and lifestyle. Hope this helps and leave a comment down below to let me know if you’ve ever had a chemical peel and what your experience was like. I’d love to know!


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