Chemical Peels 101
Chemical peels are among the most popular cosmetic enhancement treatments for many conditions, including acne, crow’s feet, sagging skin, wrinkles, sun-damaged skin and facial scars. This treatment can be performed by aestheticians, dermatologists or plastic surgeons, depending on the strength and depth of the peel. We recommend five types of chemical peels, which can be performed at our Las Vegas plastic surgery practice, that each offer their own benefits for different skin types and skin care goals:
Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) Peel
TCA is a strong chemical peel treatment that’s particularly effective for acne scarring. It is also used in skin-rejuvenation treatments that are spread out between two and three months. Like the Obagi Blue Peel, TCA peels are typically performed in 15 to 30 minutes. TCA is considered a medium-strength chemical that can also be used for deep peels, depending on the acid’s concentration. Due to the depth and strength of these chemical peels, TCA peels are only performed by board-certified plastic surgeons and dermatologists.
Glycolic Acid Peels
Suitable for treating wrinkles, acne and fine lines around the eyes, these chemical peels containing glycolic acid are actually quite gentle, as glycolic acid is a mild fruit acid derived from sugar cane. Glycolic Acid peels are so gentle that makeup can be applied immediately after treatment, but so effective that a single treatment often delivers noticeable results that can include younger-looking skin and a more vibrant appearance. Glycolic acid peels can be scheduled as frequently as needed to improve your skin and appearance, so discuss this option with our aestheticians to see if this gentle, but effective peel could be a good solution for you.
Salicylic Acid Chemical Peels
Salicylic acid is especially effective for people with various forms of acne. It works by breaking down the top layer of your skin while increasing moisture, which benefits those with dry or aging skin. Salicylic Acid chemical peels are stronger than their glycolic counterparts, but can still be performed by a licensed aesthetician. Salicylic acid, however, is not suitable for patients who are allergic to aspirin.
Lactic Acid Peels
Lactic acid results from the chemical breakdown of glucose in milk and is useful for first-time peel recipients because the acid is mild. Most people won’t have an allergic or adverse reaction to this peel, unless they are allergic to the milk protein casein, because lactic acid is a natural metabolite in the body. Since lactic acid comes from sour milk, it’s also an ideal ingredient for people who suffer from unbalanced pH levels in the skin, which can contribute to clogged pores and acne. Lactic acid peels can be performed by a trusted and licensed aesthetician as part of your regular skin care treatments.
Any chemical peel is safer when performed under the supervision of board-certified dermatologists and plastic surgeons. Our patients at Plastic Surgery Associates in Las Vegas benefit from a superior level of medical expertise, as well as the practice’s certifications and memberships in the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, the American Academy of Dermatology and others.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment or inquire about any of our patient-favorite chemical peels.