Chemical peel 101: What to know about the different types, benefits and cost

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  • Chemical peels come in different strengths and formulations and are often used together with other aesthetic treatments. 
  •  It is important to be educated about the use of the variety of peels available and whether or not they may be right for you.
  • Chemical peels can be used to address skin concerns such as acne, hyperpigmentation and premature ageing.


If you scroll anywhere near the beauty side of the internet you've probably heard of chemical peels by now. Beauty creators and day-to-day women alike laud the benefits of chemical peels. Pumpkin and pomegranate peels have gained popularity for aiding skin concerns such as acne and hyperpigmentation respectively, but that is just the tip of the iceberg - there is much more to this cosmetic treatment.

It's often useful to look beyond trends and tap the shoulders of professionals to enlighten us on these kinds of treatments. Leading aesthetics doctor, Dr Reza Mia provides some insight into what chemical peels are, the different forms they come in and, of course, how they benefit the skin. 

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He says peels help stimulate epidermal production to revitalise the skin, and allow for better absorption of skincare products by increasing the permeability of the skin. Chemical peels come in several strengths and formulations and they are often used in conjunction with other aesthetic treatments. They can significantly restore the quality and texture of the skin and treat problems such as pigmentation, acne and uneven skin tone.

Dr Reza says chemical peels use a chemical solution, usually an acid, to ‘peel’ away the top layers of the epidermis in order to improve conditions such as acne, irregular pigmentation or premature wrinkles. Chemical peels have been in use for many years and are a highly popular way to improve the texture and look of skin. There are a wide variety of peels available, each with its own unique benefits. It is important to be educated about the use of these peels and whether they may be right for you. For example, people taking Retin-A may be more sensitive and should notify their doctor.

Dr Reza has committed to only use the safest peels available on the market, he was the first General Practitioner in South Africa to be trained on the Skin Tech Chemical Peel Range that he uses. After a thorough evaluation of your skin, expectations and skin type, he will advise you on the appropriate treatments available to you. The choice of peel also depends on the downtime and recovery period required by each individual.

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Chemical peels are performed on the face, neck, hands, décolletage areas as well as birthmarks on the body. They can be used to address the following:

• Reduce fine lines under the eyes and around the mouth

• Treat premature ageing caused by sun damage and family history

• Improve the appearance of scarring

• Treat acne and blackheads

• Reduce age spots, freckles and dark patches caused by hormonal changes (pregnancy, birth control pills and menopause)

• Improve the texture, colour and appearance of the skin

• Seborrheic Dermatitis

• Melasma

• Chloasma

• Keratosis

• Ephelides

• Reduce Stretch marks

What is included in the Skin Tech range?

Easy Phytic solution (pH:1), the only slow release and self-neutralising mixture of alpha hydroxy acids, cannot simply be considered as only inducing an increase of desquamation rate, as it would be the case for other alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) peels that Dr Reza has used in the past.

Easy Phytic does not induce a visible desquamation but its action is much deeper than a classical fruits acids peel, since its slow release and self-neutralising technology allow it to directly stimulate the dermis, what other AHA peel only can do indirectly. Easy Phytic application is not painful and is technically simple to do.

Thanks to the self-neutralisation, no basic products will be applied on your skin. The result will be a progressive restructuration of skin architecture, a strong revitalisation, refreshing your skin. Easy phytic penetration is very uniform and does not need any pre-peel skin conditioning. Post-peel daily care will protect your skin and help you to get better results. Sun protection is mandatory after any kind of peel.

READ MORE | Hyperpigmentation still a leading skin concern among black women - but it can be treated 

Easy TCA peel

This is the most versatile and safe of TCA peelings thanks to the specific Post Peel Mask that stops pain immediately and post-peel inflammation. This is the most comfortable peel for both you and for the physician. Applied in just a few minutes, once a week over four weeks. It makes the skin peel the same way as a sunburn; the skin rejuvenates and tenses again progressively, the skin tone becomes more uniform, acne can be dramatically improved. Easy TCA can be applied up to the papillary dermis. It can be beneficial for the following skin concerns:

• Teen skin problems

• Skin rejuvenation

• Pigment problems

• Lentigine, keratoses

• Photo ageing

• Special protocols for acne scars

• Striae distensae

Chemical peel treatments can cost between R950 and R1200, depending on skin tone. For more information visit www.drreza.co.za.

Additional information provided on behalf of Dr Reza Mia

How have your experiences with chemical peels been? Tell us here.

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