Your face stands out as the first thing people notice about you. Are you self-conscious about your lackluster skin tone? Do you have lines and wrinkles that make you look older than you are? Do acne scars make you want to hide? If you’re looking for a way to rejuvenate your skin, Dr. Hochstein has multiple options available to restore a youthful appearance. Chemical peels can be an effective solution for patients looking to avoid a surgical procedure, and Dr. Hochstein can help you determine which is best for you.
What Is a Chemical Peel?
A chemical peel is exactly what it sounds like. A special chemical formulation is applied to the skin to “peel” away damaged layers before being neutralized and washed away, leaving behind a fresh, new layer of skin. It can be used to treat acne, wrinkles, rough skin patches, some scars, sun damage, and differences in skin pigmentation. Three grades of chemical peels are available (light, medium, and heavy), and the specific procedure performed will depend on what you wish to treat specifically.
Trichloroacetic Acid Peels
Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) is used in varying strengths for skin conditions that are mostly superficial (surface wrinkles, blemishes, and light pigmentation differences). It is used to remove cells from the outermost layer of skin (epidermis) and part of the second layer (dermis).
During your treatment, you may feel some burning as the chemical sits for a few minutes after it is brushed on your face. When the treatment is over, you will shed that outer layer of skin for about three days. After 10 to 14 days, your skin should be fully healed, and you will notice your wrinkles and blemishes have reduced drastically. TCA peels are a deeper, more intense treatment than lighter chemical peels, which typically results in a week of downtime and recovery. It is advised that you avoid the sun as much as possible after your treatment session and apply sunblock daily for several months.
Phenol peels fall under the classification of deep chemical peels. It’s a strong formulation designed to treat more difficult facial conditions such as sun damaged skin, scars, and even pre-cancerous growths. Phenol reaches down to the lower dermal layer of your skin. It can even require a local anesthetic and sedative to provide you with comfort.
A phenol peel will involve pre-treatment for approximately eight weeks to prepare your skin for the procedure and assist with the healing process. This can include administering a cream designed to thin your skin’s surface to allow for more even application of the phenol peel.
Because this is a more intense treatment, your recovery will take a bit longer than a TCA peel. You will experience redness, peeling, and discomfort for up to a few weeks. Due to phenol’s reaction with your skin, it is vital that you protect it from the sun indefinitely. Deep chemical peel treatments will have long-lasting results.
Chemical peels are an effective way to refresh your skin without surgery. Though helpful in treating many conditions, chemical peels are not effective in removing deep scars and wrinkles or in tightening skin. Hochstein Medspa offers other procedures such as Restylane® and Dysport that are effective in treating those conditions.
Dr. Hochstein will help you determine which treatment plan is most appropriate for you. For more information about chemical peels, please call our office to set up a consultation with Dr. Hochstein.