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Can Chemical Peels Help Manage Acne?

  • Posted on: Feb 14 2022
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young woman with acne problem looking in mirror If you have problems with acne flare-ups, you may hesitate to use any new products or treatments on your sensitive skin. The fear that can occur with recurring acne breakouts can prevent you from getting the care your skin needs to shine more brightly and recovery from flare-ups and irritations with more resilience. Whether you are a teen with acne or are experiencing this condition well beyond your teenage years, you can benefit from a consultation with an experienced dermatologist. In our Manhattan office, we do occasionally perform chemical peels on acne-prone skin. Here, we discuss how this type of treatment can help support healthier, clearer skin.

What Causes Acne?

A number of irritants have been identified as acne causers. The truth is that it is often a combination of factors. A person with persistent acne may have hormonal factors at play, as well as more inflammation in the skin, an abundance of oil, dietary factors, and irritation caused by products like hair care or makeup. Directly, acne develops when the pores become blocked with sticky oil, skin cells, and bacteria. So, part of the process of managing acne is to reduce this buildup. Another part is to decrease pore size, and another is to reduce the factors that are causing the skin to become inflamed. On our part, we help patients start to identify what may be irritating their skin and perform the treatment that is best suited to their needs.

Why Chemical Peels Make Sense

Our doctors perform light, medium, and deep chemical peels, each of which is customized around the patient’s skin. To manage acne, experts believe that a medium chemical peel may be the best option. This is because a medium peel tends to penetrate into the middle layer of the skin but not so much so that it stimulates a severe inflammatory response. A medium peel can be beneficial for two significant reasons:

  • More profound exfoliation. A light chemical peel can exfoliate the skin, too, but not as deeply as a medium peel. The medium peel may be more effective at removing the buildup of dead and damaged cellular debris on the surface of the skin; the debris that is clogging pores and trapping bacteria inside. By removing oil, dirt, bacteria, and cellular buildup, the medium peel allows the pores to breathe so there will be fewer pimples and blackheads.
  • Scar reduction. If acne has already caused some degree of scarring, treatment takes on a secondary purpose. When scarring is limited to surface discoloration, significant improvement may be achieved with just one peel. Shallow boxcar scars may require multiple peels over time to smooth them away. The routine exfoliation forced by chemical peels can also stimulate the production of collagen and elastin for more profound scar reduction over time.

Learn more about the benefits of chemical peels firsthand! Schedule a consultation at our NYC dermatology office at 212.391.8600.

Posted in: Acne Treatment, Chemical Peels

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