Types of Chemical Peels used in Facial Treatments

Have you got that peelin feelin.

But not sure where to begin?

Then I’ve got you covered, with all things peels.

There are three types of chemical peels commonly used in facial treatments:

  • Superficial Peel
  • Medium peel
  • Deep peel

Types of Chemical Peels

Superficial Chemical Peels
These are often referred to in the industry as lunchtime peels.

These light peels have a gentle action, penetrating the top layers of the skin.

They encourage new cells to grow strong and healthy.

Ingredients most commonly used include alpha hydroxyl acids and salicylic acid, they are well tolerated and cause only superficial injury to the skin:

  • They remove thin lesions
  • Fade any mild pigmentation
  • Help to brighten a dull, dry skin
  • Improve skin tone and texture
  • They improve superficial scars
  • They soften fine lines and wrinkles

On the UPSIDE, there is very little downtime with these peels, although some dryness may be present.

On the DOWNSIDE, one superficial peel alone won’t guarantee great looking skin.

Repeated skin peeling over six weeks duration will show improvement, ideally a course of six to ten is recommended.

When applied these peels don’t hurt and there is virtually no recovery time.

Medium Chemical Peels

Medium peels work harder than superficial peels, they penetrate the dermis creating a deliberate wound in the skin similar to sunburn and are used to treat pigmentation and stimulate collagen synthesis, tightening and toning your skin.

Medium peels can be used to treat the following conditions:

  • Pigmentation
  • Coarse skin texture
  • Long term sun damage
  • Mild to moderate wrinkles
  • Pigmentation, freckles, melasma
  • Photo Ageing, due to sun damaged skin
  • Solar comedones, these are often referred to as blackheads or white heads
  • Precancerous lesions of the skin, caused by to much exposure to the sun

Medium peels are often used on mild to moderately severe acne.

The most common acid used is Trichloracetic Acid or TCA, which comes in concentrations of twenty five to thirty five percent, or in a combination with glycolic acid.

Concentrations can go as high as fifty percent, but that comes with a higher risk of scarring, anything over thirty five percent needs to be applied by a doctor.

Obviously there is pay back for all the hard work your skin has to do, and that’s downtime, which is usually around a week.

Treated areas can be swollen and painful and healing time can be slow, it can take up to six weeks or longer before a significant improvement is seen.

Ideally medium peels should be performed every six months to a year, to maintain desired results.


This information I have shared with you is purely for a number of my clients who asked for it.

I come from a less is more philosophy, and prefer not to use peels in my salon.

I am against causing trauma to the skin, which I feel can lead to premature ageing, therefore I am about gently restoring and repairing the skin,

in saying that, I realize everyone is different and i happy to share my industry knowledge for educational purposes.

One thought on “Types of Chemical Peels used in Facial Treatments

  1. Kellie says:

    It’s hard to come by experienced people on this
    topic, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about!

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