If you are considering freshening up your look with a smoother, glowy complexion, an exfoliating treatment such as a chemical peel or microdermabrasion is a good place to start. Both are great options when it comes to combating signs of age, wrinkles, or acne. So, which treatment is right for you? Let’s talk it over.
What is the Difference Between Microdermabrasion and a Chemical Peel?
In the simplest terms, microdermabrasion manually removes dead skin cells by buffing the skin with crystals or diamond microparticles. There are two different kinds of microdermabrasion. One is done with a crystal-emitting handpiece and the other uses a diamond-tip handpiece that gently sprays on fine crystals or sand to rub away outer layers of skin and then suction them off leaving behind improved texture and a healthy glow. Microdermabrasion is great for acne, dryness, and for smoothing out texture.
A chemical peel, on the other hand, uses a single substance or a blend of alpha hydroxy acids to dissolve dead skin cells. These wash away with the peeling solution when the treatment is complete. Chemical peels are a good choice for those with acne or acne scars, pigmentation, redness, and wrinkles.
Both treatments only affect the epidermal layers of skin, and either will give you results that far surpass anything you can do at home.
What Happens After My Exfoliation Treatment?
Microdermabrasion can be done monthly for deep exfoliation, particularly if you have acne, and there is little to no downtime. It’s chemical-free and non-invasive, which makes it an attractive option for first-timers. You might have a bit of a tingling sensation afterwards and a bit of redness for up to two days. After this, you can go back to your typical daily routine. Apply sunscreen and moisturizer, but avoid any topical acne medications for at least a day.
Chemical peels tend to be harsher but the results last up to two months. The treatment itself can cause inflammation and peeling, you’ll need to steer clear of the sun for over a week. Also, a mild pain medication can help reduce any discomfort as you heal.
Once you’ve healed from either treatment, it is a great time to start a new skin care regime. Without that barrier of dead skin, your products can penetrate the skin more easily allowing them to do a much better job. Just remember, your skin will be that much more sensitive to sun exposure now. Protect that fresh new face.