Chemical Peels – what is the difference

| March 25, 2020

Chemical Peels serve as an excellent tool and essential treatment for individuals seeking to create or retain beautiful aesthetics.

*Find out which category of SAI Client you fall into; with this guide to stopping the clock vs turning back the clock.

Understanding the difference between Chemical Peels

Here is an overview of the major differences between three main types of Chemical Peels. Remember that SAI can formulate each peel to your unique skin type and aesthetic concerns.

Superficial Peels

Superficial Light Chemical Peels are the gentlest type. These surface levels peels are made of AHAs, BHAs, and often utilize lactic acid, glycolic acid and salicylic acid in very low amounts. Fruit enzymes may also serve as an active ingredient in these peels. A Superficial Peel treats the uppermost layer of the epidermis down to the dermal junction.

  1. Frequency? Multiple treatments are required. A monthly frequency is recommended as repeated treatments create very desirable results. Treatments take less than 30 minutes.
  2. Effects? Refresh skin, address light indications of ageing, maintain great skin, ideal for Prejuvenation
  3. Recovery? Zero downtime and no peeling afterwards allow these peels to be referred to as a ‘lunchtime peel’. One can resume normal activities directly following treatment.
  4. Procedure? Painless – with some individuals reporting a very mild tingling sensation during application.
  5. Result? Perfect to maintain a glowing complexion & blemish free skin.


Medium Peels

This Peel is right in the middle; being neither very light nor very intense. It relies on Glycolic Acid and/or TCA in varying concentration strengths within the formulation to yield focused and more dramatic results. A Medium Peel treats the Reticular dermis level of skin – directly beneath the surface layer.

  1. Frequency? Multiple treatments are necessary for optimized results. Peels should be spaced at 2 to 3 month intervals. Treatments take around 45 minutes.
  2. Effects? Excellent for correcting minor visible ageing, pigmentation concerns, sun damage and smoothing wrinkles. Ideal for women and men between the ages 35 to 45.
  3. Recovery? No serious downtime is required but do well to avoid excess sun exposure. Depending on the formulation of your individualized peel there might be some light flakiness as well as ‘pinkness’ for up to a week or so after your peel. Modern peels employ new Skin Health’ technologies in order to speed recovery and minimize peeling as compared to previous generations of peels.
  4. Procedure? How you experience your peel will depend on the strength of the acids within. Most Medium Peels are considered virtually pain free or mildly unpleasant. Some individuals report slight discomfort during the procedure and a tingling sensation which subsides 30 to 60 minutes post procedure.
  5. Result? Perfect to turn back the clock. These peels correct wrinkles and lines, remove imperfections, redefine pores, and may even disrupt acne breakouts. They leave skin impressively smoother and even toned.


Deep Peels

These peels are the strongest types of peel available. They depend on high concentrations of TCA or Phenol to create substantial results. A Deep Peel penetrates to the deepest layers of skin, past the Reticular dermis into the Papillary dermis.

  1. Frequency? These peels are considered single treatment peels. In general, they are not applied more than once. Treatment takes about an hour to an hour and half.
  2. Effects? Significant improvement on symptoms such as UV damage, scarring, and deeper wrinkles.
  3. Recovery? Downtime will be required. Up to two weeks or more may be necessary for skin to heal. Redness, some swelling, and skin flaking will occur. Skin may be itchy during recovery. Healing protocols and a post-treatment home regime will be required and is of vital importance to ensure results. Must avoid sun post-treatment until healing is complete.
  4. Procedure? Deep chemical peels may be moderately painful during application. The most common reported feeling is a burning and stinging sensation.
  5. Result? Remarkable Revitalization for a complete skin makeover. Perfect to produce youthful rejuvenated skin.


Personalized Approach is Important

Deciding exactly which Chemical Peel is the correct type for you will require a personal consultation. The Professionals at SAI will assess your skin condition and type, discuss goals and expectations, and recommend a peel protocol that suits you uniquely!

Be sure to discuss with your Skin Therapist which SAI Homecare would pair well with your chosen Chemical Peel.

Your Perfect Peel

To find a peel that fits your needs perfectly, Book an Appointment today. Dr Clark and his team are experienced and qualified to formulate and perform different types of peels – in their convenient Sandton clinic. We will incorporate your skin desires, your recovery constraints, and all other applicable concerns to help ensure that your peel process from beginning to end delivers satisfaction.

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