chemical peels, how to choose which ingredients and the benefits for a healthier skin

Updated: Feb 2

Chemical Peels

Chemical peeling, or chemical exfoliation, is an accelerated exfoliation induced by chemical agents that cause a controlled damage resulting in thickening and strengthening of the epidermis, the deposition of healthy collagen and therefore increases in dermal volume. The result is an improved appearance of the skin, with fewer signs of ageing. They are also used to balance sebum, improve the appearance of scarring and for pigmentation issues The best part of using chemical peels is that they function by taking advantage of a natural biological process that is constantly at work in our skin, desquamation. It literally removes or stimulates faster exfoliation of the layers of skin so that newer, healthier skin cells can surface. In that process, blemishes, scars, pigmentation and other imperfections are peeled away. Depending on the extent of the damage and peel type chosen, one treatment might not completely eliminate imperfections, but it can help to make them much less obvious. Our aesthetic peels light to medium, they are AHA and BHA, allowing for a general mild to moderate skin improvement without risk of creating issues that can occur with deeper peels such as Phenol, or TCA

There are three types of peel: light (superficial) medium and deep.

Light peels- Light peels are safe when administered correctly. - Suitable for every kind of skin type - Regular treatments at correct intervals ensures healthy skin and maintain positive benefits. - Treating the very top layer of skin (outer epidermis) - Fast treatment time - Little to no discomfort during treatment and little downtime; slight redness and tightness that subsides very quickly.

Medium peels- Medium peels are safe when administered correctly - Suitable for most skin types - Treating the the top and middle layers of skin - Slightly longer treatment time - A slight burning or prickling stinging sensation may be felt during application - Skin may remain red for longer (1-2 days) - Treatment is required at longer intervals

Deep Peels- Not suitable for darker skin types - Treat deeper layers of skin - Local anaesthetic required - A cold sensation may be felt when the peel is applied - Downtime is much longer (weeks to months) there will be redness, skin will turn brown, exfoliation can be significant and in some cases they cause swelling - Results in skin lightening

Types of aesthetic peels


Biological enzymes such as Papain and Bromelain stimulate exfoliation by digesting inter corneocyte cohesion. These proteolytic enzymes decompose proteins into smaller fragments, causing a softening effect to the skin and a sloughing of corneocytes. Unlike AHAs, their activity is not pH dependent but is activated by water and limited in the amount of exfoliation that can be achieved.

Hydroxy There are two types of hydroxy acids- alpha and beta. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) are naturally occurring carboxylic acids found in many foods, including glycolic acid (sugar cane), lactic acid (milk), citric acid (citrus fruits), and malic acid (apples) mandelic acid (almonds) AHAs are moisturizing, therefore the best choice for dehydrated or ageing skin.

Glycolic acid The glycolic acid is a carboxylic acid and structurally is the smallest belonging to the class of αlpha-hydroxy acids. It is extracted from sugar cane, beet and grapes. The peeling molecule "queen" for its cosmetic efficacy placed to various imperfections: discoloration, hyperpigmentation, atonia, dehydration, wrinkles, devitalized skin, hyperkeratosis, scarring, stretch marks and blemished skin. Its activity is linked to the ability of reducing the forces of cohesion between the corneocytes through a chemical mechanism. The exfoliation of the upper layer of the epidermis and the consequent increase the rate of cell turnover produce an increase in the activity of fibroblasts. It is an important ally for the treatment of acne by favoring the superficial exfoliation and it helps to eliminate hyperpigmentated cells from sun damage. Its powerful action stimulates in the dermis the synthesis of collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid producing a moisturising effect for improved compactness and elasticity of the skin. So it works on two levels: on the surface with its regenerative action, stimulating the desquamation process and cellular renewal determining brightness, smoothness and uniformity of tone, while the deeper layers of the skin acquire hydration and better density.

Mandelic acid Mandelic acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid, created by heating bitter almond extract. The name "mandelic" comes from the word "mandel" which in German means almond. It works with delicate chemical exfoliation, breaking the weak bonds that bind the corneocytes. It plays an important keratolytic action, removes the damaged c