Is treating acne with chemical peels safe?

Published:September 1st, 2012

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Acne vulgaris or simply called ‘acne’ is the commonest of skin problems which most teenagers face. However it is not just limited to this age group. Acne can occur at ages earlier than the teens or even pertain beyond than that. Many formulations and techniques are being worked upon to eradicate the problem of acne. Several topical creams, treatments, facials and even medicinal supplements have been prepared to reduce acne in an affected person. You might be familiar about a very famous technique for acne treatment and that is by the means of ‘chemical peels’. This method of reducing acne problem is known to be quite successful but not everyone is suitable to go for chemical peels.

If you want to know more regarding the safety of the treatment, then, this article will guide you by providing an idea about the pros and cons of the treatment.

What are chemical peels?

Use of chemical peels is actually a type of body treatment which aims upon improving the texture of the skin. Their formula is acid based. Chemical peels aim upon removing the superficial debris of skin so that the dead skin cell layer sloughs off giving way to new, fresh and live skin cells to breathe. The process is usually carried out in a spa, saloon or in a dermatologist’s office. There are several types of chemical peels based upon the kind of acid used. Some of these are:

Alpha hydroxy acid peel

Alpha hydroxy acid or AHA is a naturally occurring carboxylic acid; an example of which is glycolic acid. This kind of chemical peel formula is quite light and is suitable for light treatment of acne, fine wrinkles, uneven pigmentation and dryness of skin.

Beta hydroxy acid peel

Salicyclic acid is a commonly used beta hydroxy acid (BHA) to chemically exfoliate the debris from skin. This acid has the capability to penetrate deeper into the skin pores, reduce the production of sebum oil and remove dead skin cells.

Phenol peels

This is more a kind of deep skin cleaner. Phenols containing chemical peel formulae are quite strong. They are used to treat blotches, deep wrinkles, severe acne scars and facial freckles.

What could one expect after getting the treatment?

As you have already read that the chemical peels are based on acid formulas and hence, are not suitable for everyone. A positive answer from your treatment provider is necessary so as to avoid the consequences you would never desire from a facial treatment. The safety of this method is highly dependent upon the use of correct type of peel on your skin and in a right manner. That is why it must be done by professionally trained personnel. There are some unwanted results which are not dangerous, but must be in the knowledge of everyone who wishes to go for this treatment.

  • Many of the people, who have undergone the use of chemical peels, complain about having a burning sensation during treatment.
  • Redness may appear that looks more like due to sunburn. This redness fades away within hours or may last up to five days.
  • Skin may become more prone to damage due to sun.
  • Rarely, skin irritation is reported.

How to get more desirable results?

Chemical peels have proved to reduce acne and other skin problems and many people are satisfied with its results. To get more desirable results from your treatment and to make it more effective and safe, ask your professional treatment provider about the kinds of skin products you are supposed to use before and after this treatment. Also inform them about the skin products or medicines you might be currently using.


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