Types of Chemical Peel?
There are many different types of skin peels, although they can all be grouped according to how deep they go in to the skin – superficial, medium and deep. Deep chemical peels can yield the most dramatic results, but those results come at a price of extended ‘down time’ and a high risk of complications.
By comparison, superficial peels produce less impressive results, although this can be built upon by repeating a series of superficial peels to achieve an overall impressive result. The benefit of this approach is that the superficial peels have very little or no down time, and minimal risk of side effects and complication.
Depending on the type of peel you are having, and for what reasons, it may be necessary to treat your skin with some prescription strength creams for 2 – 6 weeks before having your peels. The purpose of this preparation is to enhance the effects of the peel and to reduce the chances of developing complications afterwards. During this period of skin preparation it is necessary to wear high factor sunscreen on a daily basis, even on cloudy days, and it is important you keep up your sunscreen throughout the course of your peels and during any healing periods afterwards.
Side effects and complications
The risk of side effects and complications depends on the depth of the peel: deep peels have a high risk of complications, where as superficial peels are relatively low risk. Following a superficial peel your skin will remain red for the first 24-48 hours. Around 3 or 4 days after the treatment you will notice some light peeling, similar to the effect of having very dry skin, although most people are able to tolerate this whilst going about their day-to-day activities and so the treatment usually has no down time.
Possible complications with deeper peels include scarring and loss of pigmentation, although it would be rare for these effects to happen with modern superficial chemical peeling techniques.