A glycolic peel is one of the lightest chemical peels offered by many beauty clinics and cosmetic surgeons. The procedure uses different concentrations of glycolic acid to exfoliate the skin. Lower strength glycolic peels are also available in pharmacies for home use.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What are the Benefits of Glycolic Peels?
- What Happens After a Glycolic Peel?
- How Frequently Should I get a Glycolic Peel?
- What are the Glycolic Peel Side Effects?
- Is a Glycolic Peel suitable for Any Skin Type?
What are the Benefits of Glycolic Peels?
The treatment is very quick, which is why it’s often referred to as a ‘lunch time peel’. It takes half an hour to 45 minutes at most and the results are rewarding. You can return to work immediately after treatment. A glycolic peel can erase wrinkles, improve your skin’s texture and treat scars, marks, stretch marks and other skin blemishes. It also helps to rejuvenate the skin, fighting the effects of aging. Glycolic peels are not as harsh as other chemical peels, which means they are relatively safe if used correctly.
What Happens After a Glycolic Peel?
Your skin will be red, however this is very temporary. The duration of redness depends on how high a concentration was used and the time it took to neutralize. Usually it’s 1 to 3 days. Neutralization time is controlled by the physician. You may be itchy but you must remember not to scratch the skin as this may cause scarring. Your doctor will provide you with aftercare instructions and a list of things you must avoid. Make sure you follow these guidelines carefully to ensure optimum healing.
How Frequently Should I get a Glycolic Peel?
Depending on your technician, a normal treatment will involve a glycolic peel every fortnight for the first 6 peels. Thereafter, treatments are usually performed on a monthly basis to maintain optimal results. You should note that treatments will progressively get stronger with each session or so. You should never do your own peel between sessions, the doctor sets down a timed treatment for a reason (your skin can’t handle too much peeling too often).
What are the Glycolic Peel Side Effects?
There are potential risks involved with a glycolic peel, which increase with prolonged and frequent use and higher concentrations. Some of the risks include your skin being dry, scarring, itchiness, swelling, redness and infection. Peels may cause discolouration of the new skin which usually occurs in blotches rather than the whole area. In most cases these can be alleviated with creams or other treatments. The side effects may also subside as treatment progresses. Since the procedure involves exposing underneath layers, your skin may be sensitive to the sun. In any event, direct sun exposure should be avoided after the procedure.
Is a Glycolic Peel suitable for Any Skin Type?
A glycolic peel is generally suitable for all skin types. However, persons with darker skin have an increased risk of discolouration or hyperpigmentation after treatment. Also, there are certain circumstances where patients should avoid this type of treatment (for example if you have kidney failure or have been prescribed Accutane medication). If your skin has cold sores or other open sores, then you may be required to postpone treatment.
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