Facial peels explained?
Facial peels, or chemical peels, are a non-surgical cosmetic procedure designed to remove dead skin cells from the surface of the face with the use of chemicals. The liquid solution is brushed onto the skin to remove dead cells and grow new ones, resulting in a more youthful appearance.
The purpose of chemical facial peels is to rejuvenate and improve the appearance of the facial skin. If you have an uneven skin tone or are concerned about acne scarring, fine lines and wrinkles, hyper-pigmentation, liver spots and other signs of aging, facial peels may help to alleviate some of these problems.
Depending on the outcome you want to achieve, there are three types of chemical peel, superficial, medium and deep. To establish the best method, you’ll need to speak to a specialist who can assess your needs and recommend the ideal skin treatment.
Who is facial peel treatment for?
There are certain types of skin which may not be suitable for facial peels. Generally, facial peels are better suited for fair-skinned patients. If you have darker sink, you may also achieve good results but there is more risk of uneven skin tone after the procedure is carried out.
Additionally, if you have loose skin, very deep wrinkles and lines or uneven skin texture chemical facial peels may not work. Other cosmetic treatments like facelift, brow lift, or fillers may be recommended instead. To establish the best course of action you’ll need to be assessed by a specialist.
What are facial peels used for?
Facial peels are generally used on the face and neck, and can treat:
- Fine lines under the eyes
- Fine lines around the mouth
- Wrinkles due to aging and over exposure to sunlight
- Appearance of some scarring on the skin
- Acne – only certain types, speak to a consultant for full details
- Some spots, freckles and dark patches
- And, it can improve the overall look and feel of facial skin
Cost of facial peel treatment
The cost facial peels will vary depending on the type of treatment you are offered. According to NHS data, the cost of chemical peels in the UK is about £60-£100 for mild peels and up to £500 for the much deeper facial peels.
Request a quote from a clinic to find out the exact price of your treatment, and what is included in the price. Be sure to full understand what is and isn’t included in the price so there are no unwanted surprises later.
Limitation and safety concerns of facial peel treatment
The results achieved through the milder treatments, superficial and medium, are not permanent. The results of the deeper peel will last longer however the risks are much greater and the treatment is generally more costly, uncomfortable and painful.
Being safe and aware of risks associated with any medical or cosmetic treatment is important. Make sure you’re prepared for your treatment by speaking to a specialist who can talk you through the procedure in more detail, going through risks and side effects, and helping to set realistic expectation about what can be achieved with facial or chemical peels.
What does the facial peel procedure involve?
The facial peel procedure usually takes about 30 minutes to do, but this may vary depending on the type of treatment you’re being provided.
The procedure works by applying a chemical solution to the area being treated. The applied chemical then reacts with the skin to increase its acidity to an optimum level. At this point the dead and damaged skin cells begin to loosen causing exfoliation, and allows for new skin to develop.
As there are different types of peels, each having different strengths, the exact process of applying the chemical, removing it and the aftercare may vary. Generally, the chemical peel is brushed on to the treatment area and left on for a certain period of time. Depending on the type of peel used, a cream may be applied at the end to help recovery.
After your facial peel procedure and recovery
After the treatment is done, you may experience a sensation similar to sunburn, the extent of this feeling will vary based on the type of treatment received. Redness is also quite common after a facial peel, but the effects should wear off after a few days.
For at least the first few months you may be advised to avoid direct, intense, sunlight as your new skin will still be fragile and healing from the procedure. Sunblock should be used during this period to help with recovery.
Most treatments won’t require any time of work or downtime for recovery, but you will be advised on this by your practitioner.
To achieve the desired result, repeat sessions may be required. The exact intervals between these sessions will vary as the more intense treatments will require longer gaps than milder procedures.
A full break down of your treatment and recovery plan should be provided by your practitioner to ensure the optimal results are achieved.
Risks and side effects of facial peel treatment
Any risks associated to chemical or facial peels should be discussed with the practitioner carrying out the procedure. They should advise you on how to reduce risks, side effects and possible complication.
Firstly, you should use sunblock for at least a month after the treatment to protect the skin as it will be very sensitive during this time.
Possible risks to be aware of:
- Uneven skin tone – this can be permanent
- Scarring – in rare cases
- Infection – in rare cases
Side affects you may experience:
- Sensitive skin
- Sunburn like sensation
- Redness of the skin
- Scaling – should clear up after a few days
What if something goes wrong?
If, after the procedure, you feel you have encountered a serious problem and the results are not what you expected, reach out to your practitioner.
Contact the clinic that performed the procedure and explain the situation, especially if you’re experiencing discomfort or any unusual symptoms that were not explained to you during the consultation.
Things to consider before your procedure
Choosing to have any cosmetic treatment requires a lot of careful thought and consideration. You need to really understand the reasons for choosing the procedure you want and set realistic expectations of the outcome.
If your mind is made up, are you confident that you are completely prepared for the treatment?
Here are some things you should think about:
- Do you have adequate space to recover?
- How long is the recovery time for your treatment?
- Do you need time off work?
- When will you start to see the results you expect?
- How do you maintain the results of the treatment?
- When will you fully recover and resume your usual activity?
Start your search
You may or may not be ready for facial peel treatment, but it’s never too soon to reach out to a clinic or hospital, or a doctor, to start a conversation. A major part of your research into the procedure you’re looking for should include direct communication, and a consultation, with an expert. Feel free to contact multiple care providers and experts. The more information you gather about your procedure and surgeon the better decision you’re likely to make.