What is chemical peeling?
Chemical peeling can be dated back to ancient times, when Cleopatra was fabled to partake in beauty regimes that included applying the juice of various fruits to her skin and bathing in milk rather than water. Today chemical peeling is more a science but still relies upon the same basic principles used thousands of years ago. Essentially, it works like this. The skin is comprised of two main layers: the epidermis and dermis. The epidermis consists of 4 to 5 layers of cells that are sloughed off and replaced every 7 to 10days. If these cells are not removed the skin appears dull, unevenly toned and may become congested with blackheads and pimples. The epidermis is also where most of the cells responsible for making the sun protective pigment, known as melanin, are found. The dermis provides the skin with its properties of strength and elasticity through the fibres collagen and elastin. Peeling involves the use of various chemicals to speed the sloughing process by dissolving the glue that holds these old skin cells onto the epidermis and in some cases may dissolve them also. This stimulates the body to produce new cells resulting in skin that is smooth, translucent and often blemish free.
Is chemical peelng safe? What are the side effects and risks?
The safety of peeling depends upon the type of skin being treated and the depth to which the skin is peeled. Chemical peels are classified into superficial, medium and deep. The most dramatic results are seen with the deep peels; however these are also the riskiest as they act close to the dermis layer where we make our scar tissue. These peels are usually a once off treatment but can take up to 10days for healing. Care must also be taken with direct sunlight for the following few weeks to months in some cases. They are very popular with movie stars, in those with severe sun damage and those wanting more dramatic improvements. To give an idea of the after effect of a deep peel, at ARGERA we affectionately refer to the deep peel as a “Freddy Kruger”.
If subtle results with virtually no down time are preferred, then we opt for superficial peels. These are great as a single treatment a week before an important event to refresh the skin or as a series of treatments to slowly break down sun damage and/or acne. They have minimal risks.
Skin type is the other major factor in determining the risk of adverse effects. Generally, the darker the skin type the higher the risks in any skin treatment. However all skins can be peeled safely when the correct regime is chosen for that patient. Fortunately, our doctor has a large amount of experience in skin analysis and always attempts to provide the safest treatment with the best possible results.
How long will results last?
Chemical peels act to “reset” the skin. Consequently, they will last as long as the skin is looked after by attempting to avoid the things that damage skin such as sun exposure, smoking, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. Skin requires water, vitamins and sun protection to look its best. Medical strength skin care is recommended.
What costs are involved in chemical peeling?
Generally, as the depth of a peel increases so does the price. Superficial peels are relatively inexpensive and quick to perform. Deep peels take more time in their planning, skin preparation and in treating, and hence their cost reflects this. Nevertheless, they remain a very popular and affordable treatment.
How is Argera different in skin peeling?
At ARGERA the doctor has specialised training in cosmetic medicine, which is recognised throughout Australia and Internationally. Her skin assessments provide honest and accurate information as to what will best suit the patient whilst trying to avoid adverse events but obtain maximum results. In fact ARGERA does not even stock the weaker beautician grade peeling agents since all clinical staff are either doctors or registered nurses. Nurses at ARGERA are trained to perform superficial peeling. All medium and deep peeling is carried out by the doctor in a controlled setting. In addition, ARGERA is serious about skin and stocks the most advanced, proven medical skin care products to help patients maintain good skin at affordable prices.