Facial Peels 101: Answers to Most Common Questions

Facial peels, or chemical peels, have become increasingly popular in regards to how much they can improve the skin’s overall appearance.

But what exactly is a facial peel? And which one is best for me?

What is a chemical skin peel? //

  • A chemical peel is a facial treatment in which a chemical solution (usually an acid) is applied to the skin. As a result, the skin is ‘damaged’, which will cause the skin to peel-off. The new skin, underneath, should feel smoother with a decrease in fine lines, wrinkles and pigmentation.

What are the different types of facial peels? //

Facial peels are defined by the depth of damage they produce on the skin.

  • Superficial Peels: do not damage the skin below the top layer of the skin (epidermis).
    i.e. AHA Peels (include Enzyme Peels (fruit acids) and BHA Peels (include Glycolic Peels, Lactic Peels & Salicylic Peels)
  • Medium Peels: may reach the top part of the deepest layer of the skin (dermis).
    i.e. TCA Peels
  • Deep Peels: reach the deepest layer of skin (dermis).
    i.e. Phenol Peels and TCA Peels (higher %).

What are the benefits of getting a facial peel? //

Facial peels have many benefits such as:

  • Getting rid of imperfections on the face and neck (i.e. acne);
  • Making wrinkles, fine lines, pigmentation, age spots and light scars less noticeable;
  • Creating a more even skin tone and texture.

Which type of skin peel is best for someone who has never had one before? //

  • Superficial peels are the best skin peel for first-timers. They are gentle-enough to not cause irritation or redness, but are still strong-enough to introduce the skin to peels, while having similar benefits to stronger chemical peels.

What are the possible side effects? //

  • Depending on the strength and/or type of peel, the most common side effects for a superficial peel can include:
    • Redness
    • Tingling
    • Sensitivity

Clients should temporarily stay out of the sun as the skin is extra sensitive. Sunscreen should be worn daily and reapplied throughout the day.

  • Superficial Facial Peels are suitable for every skin type, except those with very sensitive skin.
  • Treatments:
    • Aveda Deep Exfoliation Radiance Facial:
      • Includes Aveda’s Perfecting Plant Peel Thermal Masque;
      • Superficial Skin Peel.
    • Guinot Beaut√© Neuve Double Peeling Facial:
      • Uses fruits acids to exfoliate the skin twice;
      • Superficial Skin Peel (a little stronger than Aveda’s Plant Peel).
  • Products:
    • Guinot Biological Peeling Gel:
      • Gentle AHA exfoliant with green tea extract;
      • Massage into skin until it becomes liquid, then rinse;
      • Use once to twice a week.

Kayla Gilbert
Certified Esthetician and Skincare Specialist

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