If you’ve had skin problems or feel like you look older than you feel, a facial peel might be just the thing to bring back your smooth and youthful glow. Weather, sun exposure, smoking, acne, age and more can all affect facial skin, and sometimes you just want a little help. This isn’t radical plastic surgery; a peel helps freshen your skin and brings out the real you.
Where to Get Facial Peels
Dermatologists can perform facial peels, but it depends on how deeply into the skin’s layers you need to go to achieve the look you want. For light treatments, you can apply over-the-counter products by yourself. For deeper treatments, you’ll need a trip to the doctor.
What Facial Peels Do
There are many conditions that can make your skin appear dull, uneven or blotchy. A facial peel renews your skin faster than nature can and also corrects certain conditions that nature lets go. Some of the ways a facial peel can help include:
- Reducing the appearance of small lines around your eyes and mouth as well as wrinkles due to age and sun damage.
- Lightening freckles, age spots and darker areas that sometimes occur with pregnancy or use of birth control pills.
- Treating light scars and some forms of acne.
- Helping pre-cancerous facial growths with deeper peels.
How Peels Work
Facial peels use acidic solutions to remove your skin’s outer layers and reveal fresher ones underneath. Alpha hydroxyl acids (AHA), which include glycolic and lactic acids, are common mild forms; carbolic (phenol) and trichloroacetic (TCA) acids work deeper into the skin.
These solutions may sting and cause redness as they remove skin layers. Mild peels typically look and feel like bad sunburn. Deeper peels might cause blistering and require bandages during healing. All of them create sun sensitivity, and it’s important to protect yourself by avoiding exposure as you heal.
Success with Facial Peels
Everyone’s skin is different and your results might be completely different from someone else’s. Testing solutions or lotions on a small patch of skin before applying them to your entire face is always a good idea.
People who have fair skin and light-colored hair generally receive better results from medical peels than those with darker complexions. A facial peel sometimes causes permanent skin lightening, which is naturally more noticeable on darker tones. Treatments can still be successful, but it depends on what you want to achieve. At-home treatments probably won’t cause such problems, and you can discuss your concerns with doctors regarding deeper peels. If you’ve never used a certain product, check out some online reviews or ask a friend. Brands like Exuviance, for example, have received a lot of positive feedback through the years.
If you’re interested in light treatments that you can do at home, there are lots of good products. Some exfoliating treatments use rough granules to remove dead skin cells. BABOR Cleansing CP contains ground peach pits, and Philosophy – Clear Days Ahead Oil-Free Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment Cleanser uses microbeads and salicylic acid to clarify skin. Both also contain moisturizers to sooth and repair skin.
For a slightly deeper treatment, there’s Purifying Glycolic Gel for daily cleansing, and That’s Incredi-Peel Glycolic Resurfacing Pads offer spa-strength results at home. Note: These products contain AHAs and may sting, create redness or increase sun sensitivity. Faithfully follow the instructions, and soon you’ll be glowing with fresh, young skin.