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For brighter skin, can you peel it?

For brighter skin, can you peel it?

Here’s the lowdown on what chemical peels are all about

You might have heard of the chemical peel. This facial treatment is effective at fading dark spots, eliminating fine lines, and even tightening your skin.

How does a chemical peel work?

Phenol and highly concentrated alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) like glycolic acid, are applied by a professional to force your skin to flake or peel away, removing layers of dead skin cells to reveal new skin. Chemical peels range in strength, from light peels that use mild concentrations of acids to clear the topmost layer of skin, to highly concentrated peels that penetrate several layers of skin. Your dermatologist will prescribe the type of peel based on your expectations and skin condition.

Wait… that sounds really scary.

It can even look a little scary if you’re not prepared, as skin flakes or peels off. Recovery time is a serious consideration if you go for deep peels. It can sometimes take days to fully peel off, which means going about your life with flaky skin or hiding from the world while everything sheds.

Of course, it’s not all a Bollywood drama. Lighter “lunchtime peels” are so mild that you could visit your dermatologist during your lunch break and go right back to work without anyone knowing.

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So what’s a little downtime if it’s effective?

Not so fast. There’s something else to consider — aftercare. “New skin” will be sensitive to irritation and susceptible to the harmful effects of UV rays during this healing process. This temporary sensitivity may even last for a few months! If you haven’t been diligent about sun protection before, there’s no way to cheat your way out of sunscreen after a peel.

Surely there’s a more convenient alternative to all this?

Yes, there is — it’s the humble exfoliating cleanser. While you won’t see brighter skin immediately like you would after a peel, exfoliating cleansers slowly but surely help to remove dead skin and improve your overall skin tone and texture. Keep at it and you will see results!

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