Chemical Peel Singapore – Skin Resurfacing
Do you want your skin to start with a clean slate?
You know, get rid of the dry skin, eliminate facial lines, reduce all the dark spots and have a smooth, even skin tone. If only you could peel away your skin that is showing signs of aging, right?
Just when you think it is not possible, well, think again. There is a skin treatment technique called Chemical Peel that will do exactly just that and help you achieve a fresh new start to your skin.
Chemical Peel Procedure
Chemical Peeling is a treatment technique used to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin using a chemical solution that causes the dead skin to slough off and eventually peel off. The regenerated skin is usually smoother and less wrinkled than the old skin. It is also commonly used to improve sun-damaged skin, pigmentation and large pores. Even though it is most commonly used on the face, it is also suitable for the skin on the back, neck and hands.
Each treatment usually takes about 10 minutes to complete. Patients will feel mild itch and warmth as the peel is being applied. Once the treatment is complete, these sensations typically goes away. Over the next few days, patients will notice more skin peeling when they wash the treated area, after which, smoother, and more even skin tone is achieved.
Sun exposure, unhealthy lifestyle and external pollutants can wreck havoc in our body and this will definitely show on our skin. It can leave you with an uneven skin tone, wrinkled face, acne will become apparent and may leave you with scarring. Also, unwanted pigmentation, such as freckles, sun spots, can appear.
Getting a chemical peel can help you combat these signs of aging. A chemical peel, sometimes called chemexfoliation or derma peeling, is exactly what its name suggests. It helps to improve in smoothening the texture of the skin by using a chemical solution that causes dead skin cells to peel off. It is used to treat a number of skin conditions, like acne and acne scars, unwanted pigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, and improve rough, scaly and sun-damaged skin.
The type of chemical solution being used will depend on your existing skin condition and problem. These are categorized according to Light or Superficial Peels, Medium Peels and Deep Peels.
Using an appropriate chemical solution, several layers of the sun damaged skin cells are removed, which leaves a fresh skin that has a more even surface and color. It also helps stimulate production of new collagen, which will eventually improves the skin’s texture (Rendon et. al, 2010).
A chemical peel is an excellent aesthetic treatment of choice to rejuvenate the skin. It helps improve skin texture, leaves the skin smooth and makes the skin tone more even. It can also help in reducing fine lines, decrease hyperpigmentation, clear up acne, unclog pores and improve minor scarring. More importantly, it contributes to increased skin cell turnover and stimulates collagen production giving the skin a “glowing” look.
However, it should be noted that a chemical peel might not result to dramatic improvement for deep wrinkles and sagging skin.
Recovery and downtime for chemical peel depends on the solution used for the treatment. For superficial peels, there is minimal downtime and you may resume your normal daily activities after the treatment. However, there may be a slight discomfort immediately after the procedure and redness may occur for a couple of days.
Medium peels cause an effect that is similar to a second-degree burn. The skin may take 5 to 7 days to heal before redness can be covered up with any makeup. There may be some swelling, especially when treatment is done around the eyes. Also, the skin will turn reddish-brown 2 to 3 days after the treatment and will become crusty before peeling and flaking can happen.
For deeper peels, which can result to a deep second-degree burb, takes about 3 weeks to about 2 months for the skin to completely heal. It is suggested to take a leave from work for about 2 weeks after the treatment. Swelling may also be experienced, which can be relieved with corticosteroids. Also to reduce the pain after the peel, oral pain relievers will be prescribed, as well as antibiotic or antiviral medications to prevent infections.
For all peels, aftercare is extremely important and tretinoin cream will be recommended, which will be used 2 to 3 weeks after the treatment.
Despite its relative downtime, the results once the skin has healed after the peel can give you a more rejuvenated and refreshed look that you have been longing for.
Chemical peels can even provide in more dramatic results when paired with after a skin tightening treatment, like Thermage CPT to address pigmentation issues that cannot be addressed by Thermage. It can also be complemented with Dermal Fillers to fill in deep wrinkles.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. How does a Chemical Peel Work?
A chemical peel treatment works by applying a solution to remove damages on the outer layer of your skin and improve its texture. The procedure starts with the doctor cleansing your face to prepare for the treatment. Next, the chemical solution is brushed on to your face and will be left for a couple of minutes to work. After this, the solution will be washed off and neutralized with water or alcohol.
Types of Chemical Peels
Treatments will depend on your needs and your skin condition. Generally, chemical peels are divided into three categories and will use different kinds of techniques to target your skin problems and bring out a new layer of renewed skin. Chemical peels can be categorized into Superficial or Light Peels, Medium Peels and Deep Peels.
Superficial or Light Peels
This type of peel is ideal for those who have light pigmentation, dryness, acne and fine wrinkling, as it only removes the outer layer of the skin or the epidermis, which will reveal a healthier skin glow. For this type of treatment, your doctor will use a combination of mild chemicals, like alphahydroxy acid (AHA), glycolic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid and maleic acid.
Medium peels are best for those who have acne scars, deeper lines and uneven skin tone. It penetrates deeper into the upper part of the dermis. A chemical called tricholoroacetic acid is usually used for this kind of treatment. It can reveal an improved skin texture with reduced blotchy skin pigmentation, dry sunspots and less obvious acne scars.
This type of peel uses a stronger chemical called phenol to penetrate the deeper layers of the skin and target deeper lines, sun-damaged skin and even remove precancerous skin growth. Since it uses a stronger solution, a local anesthesia or sedative is usually administered before the treatment begins to manage your discomfort. After the application of the chemical solution is washed off, your skin will be neutralized with water and a layer of petroleum jelly will be applied on to the treated skin.
2. How Do I Prepare For a Chemical Peel Treatment?
Before you will undergo a chemical peel treatment, your doctor will perform a “test spot” to assess the appropriate solution for you, based on your skin type and condition.
You will also be advised to follow a skin care regimen, which will involve cleansing your skin twice a day and application of a special moisturizer or cream. You may also be prescribed to use tretinoin if you have acne to help it heal faster and hydroquinone for those who have tanned skin and melasma.
3. Does the treatment hurt?
Chemical peels are one of the most popular minimally invasive skin treatment procedures. While it does not require any cutting of the skin or the use of injections, the chemical solutions that are used for the treatment does cause for mild stinging and burning sensation depending on the type of peel applied on your skin.
For the superficial and medium peels, a cooling fan or cool compress is used to relieve the stinging and burning sensation. There may be certain cases that you will be given a pain reliever for medium peels and anesthesia are definitely administered for deep peels.
4. Do I have to worry about recovery and downtime?
Since it is not an invasive procedure, there is no downtime for those who have superficial or medium peels. You can go about your daily routine after the treatment.
However, you may notice some redness, stinging, skin crusting and peeling days after the treatment. But, do not worry, as this will be gone after a few days. Make-up can be applied hours after the treatment to cover up the redness. Though it is much recommended to keep your face make-up free until the redness and swelling is gone.
For deep peels, on the other, you may need to take a week off from work to recover from the intense inflammation and swelling that you may experience after the treatment. Also, a red face will be evident for up to 3 months.
5. How many treatments are needed?
This will depend upon your consultation with the doctor. A chemical peel usually requires several sessions to see optimum result. Generally, a treatment program would involve one session per week for six weeks in the case of superficial peels. This is a different case with medium and deep peels where a certain healing period will be considered before another session will be administered, if needed.
6. How soon will I see the results?
Final results may be evident and appreciated after 5 days or up until 3 weeks after the procedure, depending on the chemical peel treatment administered. The dramatic results may also vary depending on how well you take good care of your skin during the healing period.
Marta I. Rendon, Diane D Berson et al., ‘Evidence and Considerations in the Application of Chemical Peels in Skin Disorders and Aesthetic Resurfacing’, Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology, (2010), pp.32-43.