Glycolic Acid… What Is It?

Glycolic acid can effectively remove skin irregularities, roughness, superficial wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation. Belonging to the alpha hydroxy acid family, glycolic acid is a natural skin exfoliant. “The acid works by going under damaged layers of skin cells and disrupting the proteins that hold them together, increasing skin cell turnover,” explains Dr. Azeen Sadeghian, board-certified dermatologist at Sanova Dermatology in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. “Over time, this results in smoother skin,” she continues.

Glycolic Acid Peel Procedure. For reliable results, it is best to obtain a glycolic acid peel from a dermatologist. Typically, more than one peel is required, especially if the goal is to lighten hyperpigmentation. “The strength of the chemical peel will vary depending on what your provider thinks is best for your aesthetic goals and your particular skin type,” Dr. Sadeghian states.

Before the actual peel, your dermatologist may make recommendations to your skin care routine. If you are on other potentially irritating skin products, they may temporarily hold them.

“On the day of the peel, do not use any abrasives on the skin, including facial scrubs,” advises Dr. Sadeghian. At the dermatologist’s office, your face will be washed with a mild cleanser and a glycolic acid solution will be applied to the skin with a brush or a sponge. The peel is then neutralized and washed off.

Post-Acid Peel Care

For the next several days, you may experience dry, flaky skin. Mild redness is also normal. Use a bland moisturizer as the skin heals to reduce any cracking or hyperpigmentation from occurring. “When going outside, it is important that you wear a physical sunscreen during the healing process, since the skin will be particularly sensitive to the sun’s rays,” Dr. Sadeghian suggests.

To learn more about facial peels and how it can improve your skin’s aesthetic, contact us.

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