Peels are immensely popular for a reason – they work!
Chemical peels excel at improving the quality and texture of the skin. They also minimize or remove pigmentation, improve, or eradicate acne, minimize scarring, and lessen fine lines. Special acids like TCA have also been studied and have been proven to help stimulate collagen, elastin and glycosaminoglycans (natural moisturizers) in the skin.
But just because acids can do some amazing things doesn’t mean that they are a replacement for other types of procedures.
If the skin is lax (loose after weight loss) or the underlying tissues are falling a topical peel isn’t going to replace a necessary surgical procedure.
Basically, if there is excess skin – a surgical procedure is still going to be necessary.
Let’s also keep in mind timing.
Many times, the damages you are looking at on your face took years to get there – maybe an entire lifetime.
Sun damage accumulation and scarring are two big issues.
Knowing that it took such a long time to reach the surface of your skin and become a visible problem – do you think it’s accurate to assume that one or two peels are going to fix that?
I hope you said, “of course not”. Because that is truly your answer.
Your damages run very deep in the skin and it is going to take a peel series—OR TWO—to get those problems addressed. Look at this photo of the layers of skin to get a visual of how deep the issues lie.
Actually seeing how deep pigmentation and other problems go into the skin can be a real eye opener, can’t it?
Understanding the depth acids can penetrate and where the problems lie can help us to get a better idea of how many peels you will need as well as which acids will work best.
Sometimes we need to penetrate a little deeper for big issues.
If we are looking at the ravages of a battle fought with acne over the past 5 years… that is going to take several peels to improve.
You will see great strides all the time – but to get to a satisfactory result, you could be doing peels for a year or more.
No matter how shallow or deep the issues are, never forget that peels are a progression, and a bare minimum of 1 complete series of 6-8 peels will be needed to address them.
So, let’s sum this up.
Realistically, if you are looking to improve fine lines, improve your skin’s tone and texture and even the coloring… peels are a great choice. If you are trying to avoid a surgical procedure … you may end up frustrated.