How Do Chemical Peels Work?

As we age, our skincare concerns can pile up — from age spots that dot our skin to an increasing web of wrinkles. While there are effective treatments that address each of these concerns individually, chemical peels can make quick work of all of them at once.

While Dr. Nicholas Nikolov is a leading board-certified plastic surgeon here at The Nikolov Center for Plastic Surgery, he and our team believe that there are several effective anti-aging approaches, and not all of them are surgical. One such example is our suite of chemical peels, which can tackle both surface issues and those that run a little deeper.

Here’s a look at how we can tailor a chemical peel to meet your cosmetic goals.

Chemical peel: A layered approach

At its core, a chemical peel is a process in which we use chemicals to exfoliate old skin to pave the way for healthier, blemish-free growth. 

Your skin is made up of three layers: 

With a chemical peel, we’re able to target concerns in your epidermis and dermis, such as:

We can apply a chemical peel in most of your problematic areas, such as your face, neck, arms, and hands. A chemical peel won’t stop the aging process in your skin, but we can hit the reset button by peeling away old and damaged skin cells to allow room for fresh skin cells to take their place.

Finding the right peel

As we mentioned, we offer different levels of chemical peels, which go to varying depths in your epidermis and dermis.

If you have mostly surface concerns or like to brighten and tone your skin, we might suggest a lighter peel in which we use alpha-hydroxy acids, such as glycolic, lactic, or fruit acids. We can even mix in a bleaching agent to address areas of hyperpigmentation.

There’s very little downtime with light peels, and we often perform a series of light peels to get the best results. During and after your treatments, you do have to protect your skin from the sun as newer, more vulnerable cells, quite literally, come to light.

If you want to go a little deeper to tackle wrinkles and scarring, we use a more powerful chemical called trichloroacetic Acid (TCA). This chemical goes a little deeper into your epidermis and dermis, and you’ll likely have some downtime as your old skin peels away to reveal new skin underneath. During this time, protecting your vulnerable skin is paramount, as it is with the following peel.

The strongest chemical peel we offer relies on phenol to fully penetrate your dermis. In fact, we can use this type of peel to address age spots, scarring, wrinkles, and even to remove precancerous growths. This approach is what we call a deep peel, and it’s a treatment you should only undergo once. There is some downtime (typically a few weeks) afterward as your skin responds and flakes away.

As you can see, chemical peels are not only effective, but we’re able to tailor them to your unique needs.

If you’d like to peel back the layers of your skin to restore a youthful glow and smoother complexion, contact our office in Beverly Hills, California, to schedule your chemical peel.

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