Chemical Peel FAQ- Ask Dr. Rodney
Chemical Peel FAQ
Yes, the words “chemical” and “peel” sound like they should not go together. This could deter persons from actually trying one. But chemical peels have been around for thousands of years. Chemical peels are an excellent treatment option for acne, dark spots, skin discoloration, fine lines, and wrinkles.
Unfortunately, misconceptions exist, which result in persons using peels either incorrectly or for the wrong skin condition, resulting in less than ideal outcomes. Here we will debunk these common myths.
Myth #1: A chemical peel is painful.
Fact: This was true at one time when untrained persons did chemical peels using harsh ingredients. Modern superficial peels consist of a combination of alpha and beta- hydroxy acids and salicylic acid, which cause little to no discomfort. Medium depth peels, which penetrate a little deeper into the skin, can be more uncomfortable, but numbing cream is applied to the skin before the procedure.
We do take into account that some skin may be more sensitive than others, so Dr. Rodney will determine during the consultation what ingredients are safest and most effective for your skin.
Myth #2: Chemical peels require significant recovery time.
Fact: Again, this may have been true many years ago. However, today’s sophisticated formulas provide a controlled peel, without excess redness, irritation, or flaking. In fact, you can go right back to your daily routine. For deeper chemical peels, the downtime can be 2 weeks.
Myth #3: You need to take time off work for a chemical peel.
Fact: Some peels, like the signature “Eternal Glow” peel, take less than 15 minutes (like over your lunch break). You can go right back to work.
Myth #4: Peels only work for severely sun-damaged skin.
Fact: Chemical peels work wonders for a variety of skin conditions. These include acne, dark spots, sun damage, clogged pores, melasma, and mild-moderate wrinkles. They work by boosting collagen production, stimulating healthy cell growth, and exfoliating dead skin cells. The result is a long-lasting, youthful, and vibrant appearance.
Myth #5: If I don’t see peeling, then the chemical peel is not working.
Fact: Many of the most sophisticated newer chemical peels contain a mixture of natural acids, as well as soothing hyaluronic acid. These cause skin turnover and exfoliation on a cellular level. Although the peeling is not visible to the naked eye, the result speaks for itself.
Myth #6: Chemical peels are not for dark skin tones.
Fact: Darker skin types are at an increased risk of getting burnt by a chemical peel, resulting in unsightly dark spots, otherwise known as “hyperpigmentation.” That’s why you should choose a board-certified dermatologist with expertise in the uses of peels in all skin types and ethnicities. They will tailor your peel technique to your specific skin types- the results are wonderful.
Myth #7: One chemical peel will resolve your skin problems.
Fact: A chemical peel regimen may entail a series of treatments; for example, 4-6 peels performed every 4 -6 weeks. You should not do deeper peels more than once or twice a year. After you have achieved your skin goal with the initial series of peels, you may have a maintenance treatment intermittently.
In some cases, 1 peel is enough. You can combine it with other treatments, like retinol creams, acne medications, facials or lasers.
Myth #8: “At home” peels are just as good.
Fact: A chemical peel should always be performed under the direction of a board-certified dermatologist. The kits sold in the drugstore and online can cause serious damage. This is especially true for sensitive skin or darker skin types.
Myth #9: You only need one chemical peel
Fact: The number of sessions will depend on the extent of skin damage, and the individual’s response to each peel treatment. The number of sessions required varies from one patient to another. Advanced peels are ideal to be done every 4-6 weeks. In most cases, the maximum results can be seen after the 2nd or 3rd treatment.
Myth #10: All chemical peels are the same
Fact: Chemical peels are not all equal. There are different types of chemical peels, including advanced peels, medium-depth peels and deep peels. These different types of chemical peels deliver varying results that depend on the skin characteristic of the patient. Therefore, you should seek advice from a dermatologist about the type of peeling method suitable for the skin’s condition. Choosing the wrong type may aggravate or burn skin.
Schedule an appointment for a consultation
If you have dull dry skin, acne-prone skin, or simply want to rejuvenate your complexion, contact us or book online now. Our lead dermatologist, Dr. Ife J. Rodney MD, FAAD is a trusted medical, cosmetic, and surgical dermatologist in Maryland. We are conveniently located in Fulton (Maple Lawn), MD. We serve Columbia MD, Clarksville, Ellicott City, Laurel, Bowie, Silver Spring, and surrounding areas in PG and Howard County, Maryland.