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Is a Chemical Peel Safe for Sensitive Skin?

Is a chemical peel safe for sensitive skin? If you’re one of the many people who is interested in this popular, effective skin treatment option but don’t know whether your skin can handle it, we want to help clarify a few things. Read on to discover how chemical peels work by examining the top factors to consider if you have sensitive skin.

Examine the Chemical Solution Used

Many people don’t realize that chemical peel facial treatments actually come in a variety of different forms. Yes, the commonality between them all is that they are applied to the face before being gently removed, working as a chemical exfoliant as well as a collagen stimulator. But the chemicals used and their depths can be drastically different depending on the need of the patient.

Some lighter chemical peels use the ingredient glycolic acid. These tend to be lighter variations and can help brighten and smooth the skin, giving it a glowing, youthful appearance. Salicylic acid peels can penetrate the skin more deeply, targeting issues in the layers beneath the topmost layer of the epidermis. Because they’re more intense, they’re usually recommended for people with oily or acne-prone skin.

Depending on the type of chemical peel you’ll be receiving, your dermatologist might give you a topical agent to use before your appointment. Follow the instructions closely to avoid irritation and ensure the best results.

Determine the Frequency of Treatments

Your dermatology specialist will be able to give you a recommendation for how often to receive chemical peel treatments. Those patients who are targeting more stubborn issues like deeper wrinkles, noticeable scarring, or tough cases of acne often benefit from receiving chemical peel treatments every two to four weeks. Because the skin is exfoliated with each peel, it can then regenerate and grow new, fresh skin cells more quickly.

But for those with particularly sensitive skin or very mild skin issues, a chemical peel may not be needed that frequently. Many people benefit from a quarterly or twice-yearly chemical peel treatment routine. Talk to your provider to determine the appropriate timeline for your skin.

Consider Any Potential Interactions

Any retinol products or prescription retinoids should be stopped roughly five days prior to a chemical peel appointment to avoid any adverse or harmful drug interactions. By the same token, it’s smart to avoid exfoliation before a chemical peel, as this could remove too many layers of skin and cause irritation.

The most commonly reported side effects from chemical peels are some redness and flaking post-treatment. While these issues may not happen at all, if they do occur, they should clear up within a few days to a week. It’s also important to avoid direct or prolonged exposure to sunlight, as this can irritate or even burn the freshly exposed skin.

Know the Experience of Your Provider

Finally, remember that any skin treatment is only as good as the person who administers it. Talk to your dermatologist about the chemical peel prior to receiving it, and don’t hesitate to ask for testimonials or a portfolio of satisfied patients. Working with a high-quality dermatology provider means the best chances of getting the peel that’s right for your skin.

Contact Vanguard Dermatology

Ready to look into your chemical peel options? If you’re located in the greater New York City area, contact Vanguard Dermatology today for an appointment with one of our board-certified specialists.

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