Chemical Skin Peels

chemical skin peelThe Chemical Skin Peel is an adaptable skin treatment that I use as a method of resurfacing and regenerating my clients’ skin. A chemical skin peel removes superficial layers of skin to reveal a fresh, smooth, younger dermis and stimulate collagen remodeling.
They can positively address issues such as hyperpigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles, congestion, acne and scarring. They can treat conditions for corrective skin programmes, maintenance treatments or can be used for an instant radiance boost.
They can be used alone, or as part of a combination of other treatments and/or products.
Through your consultation and skin analysis, a chemical skin peel will be chosen and tailored to your individual needs to benefit your skin type.  Various depths of peeling can be achieved with different products.  Although you will be advised on what skin peel will suit your skin, some details about the most common peels are below.

Benefits of chemical peels:

  • Removal of dead skin cells, revealing a bright, radiant complexion.
  • To instigate skin-cell turnover, allowing keratin and collagen to be stimulated.
  • Breakdown pigment.
  • Deep cleanse to remove pore congestion.
  • Smooth and refine the skin’s surface.
  • Re-build scarred tissue.
  • Tighten and firm – to smooth out lines and wrinkles.
  • Reduce inflammation and restore the barrier function of the skin.
  • Hydration.

The Different Types of Chemical Skin Peels

The SM Gel Peel

This peel is very superficial and is ideal if you are new to peels or looking for an instant radiant boost.  Great for fine lines or lightly pigmented skins.  Also ideal for oily, congested skins due to its anti-inflammatory antiseptic ingredients.

The Micropeel 20 and 30

These are clinical grade glycolic peels that will target damage, dullness and visible imperfections.  They resurface the skin, stimulate remodelling and decongest the skin.
Ideal for dry, rough, ageing skin types.  These peels will treat moderate fine lines and wrinkles, photo damage and pigmentation.

The Pigment Balancing Peel

This peel will remedy both sun damage and melasma (hormonal pigmentation) with a continued programme of correction and maintenance.  Ideal for hyperpigmentation, uneven skin tone and photo-ageing skin types.

The Obagi Radiance Peel
Obagi peel from elegance clinic

The Obagi Radiance Peel is a gentle chemical peel that will instantly reveal your inner glow with minimal down-time.  This superficial exfoliation can improve your skin’s texture, look and feel in a matter of minutes.  It improves a range of skin concerns, including photo damage, and results in an improvement in texture and tone.
A series of 4-6 peels will provide the best overall results.

The Obagi Blue Peel

The famous Obagi Blue Peel procedure will help to restore a tighter, smoother, more glowing look to your skin. Use of the Obagi Nu-Derm system is recommended before and after your peel for optimum results.

Depending on your skin health you may need a course of these peels, however with use of the Nu-Derm range this may not be the case.
For best results your skin should be ‘prepped’ for an even result from your skin peel and it is particularly essential that you follow the post-treatment advice following your skin peel.

All after-care advice will be given to you verbally and in writing during your treatment, along with direct contact details should you have any follow up questions.
If you require any further information please contact me.


It is vital to understand that chemical skin peels can be used for mild exfoliation purposes, however controlled regeneration is also achievable with minimal down-time, as long as the skin is prepared prior to treatment.

Skin preparation is a vital part of the peeling process and will avoid problems afterwards such as hyperpigmentation, infection and scarring.  I will not treat anyone unless their skin is prepped and in good enough health to get the therapeutic effects from a peel without adverse effects.

The price of peels include after-care products.  I can advise you on how and what you prep your skin with.  Call me today!

Common questions asked about Chemical Skin Peels


What Is a chemical peel?

A chemical peel is a skin treatment that is used to improve and smooth out the surface of the facial skin. A chemical solution is used to remove top layers of skin, which allows the dead surface skin to peel off. The peeling process leads to new skin growth, which is usually smoother, healthier and less wrinkled compared to the old skin.

Which peel is right for me?

There are three different types of peel: superficial, medium and deep peels, categorised by the strength of the acid solution used in the peel and how deeply they penetrate the skin. Deeper peels penetrate the skin further and would require greater recovery time.

Why superficial Chemical Peels?

Skinceuticals superficial chemical peels are a good option for many people as they have a gentler effect and do not result in visible skin peeling, inflammation or significant redness compared to medium and deep chemical peels. Superficial chemical peels do not require pain relief, and can be used in many skin types, including darker skin tones, with little or no down-time or recovery time, which means no obvious skin peeling and no need to take time off work. Skinceuticals offer two types of superficial chemical peeling treatments, the Skinceuticals Gel Peel, which is a Salicylic acid peel and the Skinceuticals Pigment Balancing Peel, which is a Glycolic acid peel.

What skin conditions can Skinceuticals chemical face peels treat?


Chemical peel acne treatments exfoliate the skin and allow dead skin cells and excess oils to be removed more effectively. This action unblocks hair follicles and pores, and reduces the appearance of pimples, improving the overall skin texture in people with acne.

Fine lines and wrinkles

chemical peels can reduce these, especially under the eye area and around the mouth in sun-damaged or ageing skin.

Rough skin texture

chemical skin peels can improve rough skin texture by increasing the amount of collagen in the upper layer of the skin.

Lentigines (large freckles)

These appear as dark spots on the skin, also called liver spots or age spots. A course of chemical peels can lighten large freckles and improve the appearance of sun-damaged skin.


Melasma is a dark skin discolouration that appears as patches commonly found on the cheeks, nose, lips, upper lip, and forehead, and is common in women who are taking hormonal treatment. A course of chemical peels can lighten the appearance of dark discoloured skin caused by melasma.


Hyperpigmentation caused by excess skin pigment in the skin, which can result in uneven skin tone. Chemical peels can lighten and even out the skin tone.

Superficial peels are suitable for ethnic skins.

Superficial chemical peels cannot be used:

  • To Eradicate deep lines and wrinkles, cure sagging skin due to sun-damage or ageing, or decrease the size of skin pores
  • On pregnant or breast-feeding women
  • If you have active cold sores or warts on the face
  • If you have any inflamed rashes, skin reactions or open wounds on the skin
  • Where there is sunburn. You need to wait four weeks after excessive sun exposure before having a peel
  • If you have excessively sensitive skin, including atopic eczema, dermatitis or inflammatory rosacea in the area to be treated
  • If you have a history of severe allergies or a known allergy to the components of the peel, including an allergy to aspirin
  • If you have taken Roaccutane (a medical treatment for severe acne), within the past 12 months
  • If you have been treated with radiotherapy or chemotherapy in the past 12 months
  • If you have a history of keloid scarring

How many peels will I need?

Whilst you will see some minor benefits after a single superficial peel. I recommend a course of six peels, two to four weeks apart. This will give the best results. As superficial peels are gentler, the full benefits of the peel build up over a course of six treatments.

Book in for a pre-peel consultation

I advise you to book a pre-peel consultation two weeks before your chemical peel where I will assess your skin and discuss your treatment plan and expectations. You may be given a patch test at this time. You will be advised to prepare your skin with three products for two weeks before the peel and to continue these products during and after your course of treatment (see below for details about these). These three products are Retexturing Activator or Pigment Regulator, an antioxidant and a sunscreen. These products are highly recommended and in some cases essential to give the best results of the peel and are especially important for those going on a course of peels. Our main aim is to reach optimum skin health and your home regimen will need to work towards this along side your treatments.

Six weeks prior to your peel:

Stop any products containing retinol eg. Retin-A, Renova, Differin (Adapalene 0.1%) Tazorac.

The following products are amazing and will improve the results of your peel and are especially important for those going on a course of peels.

  • Retexturing Activator is a revolutionary resurfacing and replenishing serum, which exfoliates and hydrates. It activates the skin’s regeneration response, visibly diminishing surface lines and transforming the skin’s fabric into a smoother, softer texture. The Retexturing activator can be continued during and after your course of peels to further enhance the effect of your peel.
  • Pigment Regulator is used instead of the Retexturing Activator if you are having a chemical peel for excess pigmentation. The Pigment Regulator lightens and reduces existing skin pigments, improves overall skin tone, and protects skin from future discolourations. The formulation combines precise concentrations of kojic acid and emblica to improve uneven skin tone. The Pigment Regulator inhibits the production of excess melanin, prevents excess melanin from travelling to the skin’s surface, and breaks up melanin clusters on the skin’s surface to diminish existing discolouration.
  • Antioxidant serums such as CE Ferulic, Phloretin CF or Serum 10 provide advanced skin protection by neutralising environmental and sun skin damage. They help build collagen, and provide unmatched antioxidant protection.
  • Sunscreens are essential and should be used in combination with an antioxidant to protect the skin from the ageing effects of ultraviolet sun damage. It is very important to use a sunscreen, a minimum of SPF 30, and to avoid sun exposure following a peel, and during the treatment period for up to four weeks, as the delicate post-peel skin can be more easily sun damaged and this can lead to excessive skin pigmentation.

One week before peel:

Avoid electrolysis, waxing, hair removal creams and laser hair removal for an entire week prior to your chemical peel.

24 hours before your peel:

Stop using any exfoliating products or products that may be drying or irritating, including products containing alpha or beta hydroxyl acids or benzoyl peroxide (a treatment for acne). You will also be advised that on the day of your peel to cleanse your skin in the morning and not to apply makeup on the face other than eyes or lips.

The chemical skin peel procedure

During your treatment, your skin will be cleansed and toned and the chemical peel will be applied to your skin using a gentle brush. The peel will be left on the skin for between three and five minutes, during which time some patients may experience a mild tingling or a mild burning sensation. The procedure is not painful. After the peel, a cool compresses may be applied to the skin. Your skin will be moisturised and an antioxidant and a sunscreen will be applied to the skin.

Chemical Skin Peel Aftercare

After your peel you may notice that the skin is more red than usual for two hours afterwards, you may also notice that the skin feels tight or dry, and you may experience some very mild flaky skin for a few days. In rare circumstances, you may experience crusting of the skin, swelling or a reactivation of cold sores. It is very important to use a sunscreen during the course of your treatment and for four weeks after to prevent uneven skin tone and excess pigmentation.

  • Do not use any other skin products except those advised by your practitioner.
  • Do not pick any spots or peel off any flaky skin.
  • Do not use Alpha Hydroxy Acids or BetaHydroxy Acids on your skin for 24 hours.
  • It is imperative that you use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and avoid direct sunlight for at least one month.
  • Patients with hypersensitivity to the sun should take extra precautions to guard against exposure immediately following the procedure, as they may be more sensitive following the peel.
  • Please avoid strenuous activity for 24 hours.
  • When washing your face, do not scrub, use a gentle cleanser for sensitive skin.
  • Apply a light moisturiser such as hydrating B5 as often as needed to relieve dryness and tightness.
  • Do not have any other facial treatments for at least one week after the peel

Will I be able to go out in the sun after a chemical skin peel?

Your skin will be more susceptible to sun damage up to 4four weeks after the treatment as the peel resurface the skin. I recommend that a sun protection cream of at least SPF 30 is worn permanently to reduce the effects of sun damage and ageing. If travelling to a hot climate, I recommend a skin peel is postponed until you return home from your journey.

Are the skin peels good for scarring?

Yes, skin peels are an ideal treatment for the reduction of scarring. They can be especially effective against acne scarring, however it may take more than one peel to achieve the optimum results.

Will the peel get rid of pigmentation marks?

Pigmentation marks caused by sun damage can be removed or reduced by skin peels. However, there is a small risk that a skin peel could cause hypopigmentation marks to the skin. Dark skins, such as Asian and black skins are more prone to this damage; they can still be treated with preparation to the skin before the peel.

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