Maybe you’ve heard more and more people talking about the benefits of chemical peels. At the same time, there are also plenty of people that complain about this procedure. Either because it hasn’t offered them the expected results, or because it has caused them some sort of skin damage. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Meaning the chemical peel can be a great treatment if done correctly. However, it can also have its risks, which you should be aware of before attempting this procedure. Today, we are going to look at the pros and cons of the chemical peel. But not before we establish what a chemical peel can be used for and what types of chemical peels you can try. Shall we begin?

someone applying a face mask on a woman at a spa

What Can I Get a Chemical Peel for?

First of all, you should know that a chemical peel is a treatment that uses a chemical solution that removes one or more layers of your skin in order to leave it looking young and rejuvenated. Generally, people get chemical peels for their face, but you can also get them for your neck or hands. People who feel their skin is getting old, or people who suffer from sun damage or acne can get a chemical peel to even their skin tone and get rid of some of the damage. You can also whiten your skin with this procedure.

Basically, you can get a chemical peel to get rid of acne or acne scars, to eliminate dark spots, to smooth some of your wrinkles and fine lines, to get rid of freckles, to even out your skin tone, eliminate patches of rough skin or scars, and repair some of the sun damage.

The way the procedure works is that the chemical substance used on your skin makes it blister and then peel off. Thus, it reveals a much smoother and younger looking skin.

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What Types of Chemical Peels Can I Get?

Chemical peels are divided into three categories, according to their complexity and how effective they are going to be.

The first type of chemical peel you should be aware of is called superficial peel. This one only gently exfoliates your skin. It eliminates only the first skin layer, so it is not at all complicated or dangerous in any way. However, at the same time, you shouldn’t expect extraordinary results. Usually, this type of peel is used for slight skin discoloration or on areas where the skin is a bit rougher. You can also use it to make your face, neck, or hands look younger and more refreshed. Remember that its effect does not last for so long. So you will have to repeat the procedure every now and then to make sure the effects are long-lasting.

cosmetician applying a mask on a woman's face as she is laying down

The second type of peel is a medium peel. This one does not only exfoliate the first layer of your skin, but it also takes care of the second one. If you are dealing with wrinkles and fine lines, dark spots, medium skin discoloration, or freckles, this might be the best option for you. Its effects last longer than the superficial peel. Even so, you can also repeat the treatment after your doctor assures you that it is safe.

Finally, the deep peel removes dead skin cells from the deepest layer of your skin. This means that it is the most effective out of all of them. However, it can be quite dangerous as well, so you can only do this once. It dramatically improves your skin’s condition, treating age lines, wrinkles, spots, scars, freckles, and so on.

Chemical Peel Pros and Cons

Now that you are familiar with what a chemical peel is, what you can use it for, and what are the main types available to you, it’s time to take a look at some pros and cons that will help you decide if getting one is a good idea for you or not.

Chemical Peel Pros

1. Helps You Get Rid of Fine Lines and Most of Your Wrinkles

Definitely one of the biggest pros of a chemical peel is the fact that it helps people dealing with fine lines or wrinkles eliminate most of them. So if you notice signs of aging and you want to do something to reverse that effect, you could always go for a chemical peel. If your skin is saggy or loose, especially around your eyes and under your chin, you will be happy with the results of this treatment. Your skin will look more refined and younger, and it will definitely glow.

illustration of woman looking at her wrinkles with a magnifying glass

2. Evens out Your Skin Tone

For people who struggle with darker spots and an uneven skin tone, a chemical peel can be a great option. It will even blur out your pores and help you get rid of freckles, for an even complexion overall. Do you have blemishes or dark under eyes? You can forget about those as well if you decide to do a chemical peel. No more acne scars, only radiant skin.

3. Helps Your Skin Become More Supple and Soft

Do you miss those day when your skin was incredibly soft and supple? Well, now you can get some of that magic back with a chemical peel. Do you know those dead skins cells that make your skin look and feel so rough? You get to eliminate them with this procedure, allowing a new layer of healthy and young looking skin to take their place.

4. It Is Non-Invasive and Doesn’t Take a Lot of Time to Complete

You are done with a chemical peel in two hours and can go back home in no time. The steps of the process are the pre-cleaning of the skin, the application, some time to let the solution set, and then the removal of said solution. Plus, even if you do have to go through a healing process, it only takes around 2 weeks to complete. So overall, specialists don’t consider a chemical peel invasive. It is not like having a surgery for instance.

woman with healthy complexion holding a picture of a complexion with blemishes

Chemical Peel Cons

1. Won’t Help You Get Rid of Deep Wrinkles

As any other anti-wrinkle treatment, a chemical peel does not work like magic, so don’t expect it to work on deep wrinkles. You will indeed blur those fine lines, even though the effects are temporary (especially in the case of the superficial peel). However, if you have deep wrinkles and you really want to get rid of them, you might consider some other solution than a chemical peel.

2. Could Damage Your Skin

Maybe you’re feeling a little bit confused at this point, because we just mentioned that chemical peels help you eliminate skin damage, not damage your skin even further. However, it is worth noting that because we are talking about a chemical, you might damage the healthy cells in your skin in the process of eliminating dead skin cells. This is particularly true and visible in people who have a darker skin tone. After the peel, they might get lighter patches all over the treated area.

3. Could Increase Skin Sensitivity

Another important con of chemical peels is the fact that your skin might become sensitive after you get one. This is mostly the case in the days after the procedure when the skin is dry and scaly. During that time, you should never leave the house without UV protection, if you don’t want to get blemishes and age spots.

close up of a red face as a result of a chemical peel

4. It Is Quite Expensive

Depending on the type of peel you want to get, you will have to pay between $150 and $6.000. A superficial peel costs between $150 and $300, for a medium peel you will have to pay between $1.000 and $2.000, and a deep peel will cost you between $2.500 and $6.000. However, it is worth mentioning that the more expensive the peel is, the better the results will be. Moreover, the most expensive one is also the one that you should only get once. So you can definitely consider it an investment.

5. It Might Not Work for You if You Have Darker Skin

Maybe you can already tell from the information we provided you with earlier that chemical peels mostly work for people who have fair skin. That is because if you have darker skin, you might get unnatural white spots after a peel. Furthermore, the difference between the color of your face and the color of your body will be quite noticeable.

What Is the Final Verdict?

The bottom line is that you should do a chemical peel only if you think it is the right choice for you. For some people who have fines lines and fair skin it can work wonders. At the same time, people with deep wrinkles or a dark skin tone might not find it effective at all. Take a look at all the pros and cons we mentioned above before making a decision, and consult with your physician to make sure a chemical peel is the right choice for you.

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