Chemical Peels

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) are intended to answer a lot of the most commonly asked questions that you may have about a specific procedure. Please remember that what you read in this section is only intended to provide you with a general answer to a question and should not be considered in any way a substitute for a personal consultation with Dr. Papadopoulos.

For more information about any of our treatments we encourage you to call and schedule an in-office consultation on 1300 drtim.

What Is a Chemical Peel?

The best candidates for the procedure are those between ages of 25 and 65. In many cases, wrinkles in people over 65 are ‘static’ and do not change when relaxing the face. Other procedures would work better for these patients. Each person is different however, and should undergo a consultation to determine the most effective treatment plan.

What type of peel is right for me?

At CosmeticCulture, we offer TCA, Glycolic, Lactic and Salicylic Acid peels. The type of treatment, which is right for you, will be determined by you and your doctor or aesthetician to provide you with the greatest benefits. Types of peels we offer:

Trichloroacetic Acid (TCA) TCA can be used in many concentrations, but it is most commonly used for medium-depth peeling. Fine surface wrinkles, superficial blemishes and pigment problems are commonly treated with TCA.

Alphahydroxy Acids (AHA) such as glycolic, lactic, or fruit acids are the mildest of the peel formulas and produce light peels. These types of peels can provide smoother, brighter-looking skin for people who can't spare the time to recover from a phenol or TCA peel. AHA peels may be used to treat fine wrinkling, areas of dryness, uneven pigmentation and acne. Alphahydroxy acids, such as glycolic acid, are often mixed with facial washes or creams in lesser concentrations as part of a daily skin-care regimen to improve the skin's texture.

Salicylic Acid a beta-hydroxy acid, is found naturally in willow bark, wintergreen leaves, and sweet birch bark. Formulations containing high concentrations of salicylic acid help slough off dead cells and debris while stimulating the skin’s natural renewal process.

How long do treatments take?

Often referred to as ‘lunchtime peels’, these treatments can be performed in about 15 to 20 minutes.

How do chemical peels work?

Chemical peels use solutions to peel away the top layers of your skin, revealing new, fresher and smoother skin. Three types of peels are offered, ranging from light ‘lunch hour’ peels designed to provide subtle results with less recovery time to deep peels that provide dramatic results but that take longer to heal.

What do chemical peels treat?

All chemical peels reduce fine lines, wrinkles, pore size, scars, age spots and other signs of premature aging. However, the results will depend on the type of peel performed, and in the case of light or medium peels, may require subsequent procedures for more long-lasting results.

What are chemical peel treatments like?

Chemical peel treatments are performed on an outpatient basis. We will cleanse the treatment areas and then apply the chemical solution. A slight burning sensation felt for a short period of time, but the solution also works as a mild anesthetic. The depth of the peel will depend on the type of peel decided upon (light, medium or deep), but all peels reveal new, fresher, more youthful skin.

Does it hurt and what can go wrong?

Chemical Peels are normally a safe procedure, however, as with any medical procedure, they have some potential risks and complications.

Though the occurrence is rare, any peel can lead to uneven skin pigmentation, infection or scarring. The greatest risk involves over-exposure to the sun. Failure to follow our directions for protecting your skin from the sun can result in uneven skin pigmentation and blotching. Deep peels may pose special risks for patients with a history of heart disease. It's very important to notify us of any previous occurrence of heart ailments when he or she takes your medical history.

What should I expect from chemical peels treatment?

The results of a chemical peel will depend on the type of peel that was performed. A light peel will have more subtle results, which will become more visible on subsequent visits, but you will immediately see more vibrant, younger-looking skin. Medium peels will show greater results than light peels, and deep peels show the most dramatic results.

Small flakes or scabs may form to protect the new skin, but are usually easily removed gently with soap and water (we may prescribe healing ointment for use after cleansing your skin). Some people may experience abnormal itching, swelling or tingling. Your surgeon will provide you with medications or directions on how to use cold compresses to minimise this condition.

Is there any downtime?

The in-office treatments (light-medium peels) require little or no recovery time. Although there is typically no downtime; after a treatment, depending on the customisation of the procedure, you may experience redness the day of the treatment and minor peeling in the days following the procedure. Depending on your skin you may or may not experience peeling. If peeling occurs, it usually begins 2 to 4 days following your treatment and lasts for approximately 3 days. In addition you may experience mild itching and irritation.

Recovery time also depends on the type of peel performed. Deep peels take weeks to heal and require some bandaging and refraining from strenuous activity. While medium peels may require you to take it easy for a few weeks, bandages are not normally needed. Light peels provide the quickest healing time.

Chemical peel vital statistics:

Treatment For: Fine lines, age spots, scars and wrinkles
Expected Result: Treated areas smoother, skin more radiant
Treatment Time: 30 minutes to several hours, depending on peel type
Recovery: A few days to a few weeks, depending on peel type
For Best Result: Follow doctor's instructions