What to expect from a chemical peel

Chemical peel procedure is minimally invasive way to improve skin’s appearance

If you want to rejuvenate your skin’s appearance, your dermatologist may recommend undergoing a chemical peel.

The procedure uses a chemical solution, dabbed gently on the skin, to help the skin shed and be replaced by new skin cells.

One of the chemical peel procedures offered by dermatologists at ADC is the Theraplex peel — a superficial salicylic acid peel.

It is commonly used to treat melasma, acne, rosacea, superficial brown spots and light acne scarring.

Dr. Stacia Miles, ADC dermatologist, says the main ingredient — salicylic acid — promotes epidermal turnover of the skin so the skin can shed mildly and be replaced by new cells.

Salicylic acid also helps neutralize bacteria, and it reduces the appearance of pigment, fine lines, redness and scarring.

What to expect

Chemical peel applied to face

Dr. Miles says the Theraplex peel is not painful. In fact, it only takes about 10 minutes. It can be performed in the doctor’s office.

“The term peel is often intimidating to patients expecting a dramatic peel as part of the procedure, but these are solutions that cause a micro-peel,” Dr. Miles said. “So patients should not be in pain during the procedure.”

Most patients don’t have any problems with the Theraplex peel.  Theraplex peels are anti-inflammatory and very well tolerated in acne and rosacea patients.

“Patients will notice an immediate improvement in skin texture and tone and may have a slight rosy glow for a few days following the procedure,” Dr. Miles said.

Patients can also expect a mild to moderate dryness with some flaking after a peel – but it depends on your skin type.

“If you moisturize and stay out of the sun most patients can go right back to work the next day,” Dr. Miles said.

The peels are not for everyone, though. They should not be used in patients who are allergic to aspirin or salicylic acid or in pregnant or breastfeeding patients.