August 9, 2021

Improve the appearance of sun damage with post-summer peels

As we say goodbye to summer, it’s a prime time to address the signs of sun damage accrued during the summer months. Despite the efforts of even diligent sunscreen-wearers, environmental assaults and UV radiation can cause the complexion to become visibly dry and uneven. Post-summer peels not only help repair the damage, but they also prevent accumulated damage that may necessitate additional therapeutic treatment in the fall and winter months.

Chemical peels are designed to literally peel away the top layers of the epidermis - and with deeper peels the dermis - by dissolving the bonds that hold our cells together and further speeding up the exfoliation process. Post-summer peels are an excellent way to maintain the quality of a patient’s skin, as they exfoliate texture irregularities, reduce unwanted pigmentation and sunspots, clear clogged pores and strip the skin of excess oil production.

When a patient’s risk of sun damage decreases after the summer and tissue is closer to its natural tone, the depth of a peel can be adjusted with increased percentages of active ingredients, or by “stacking” one to two additional passes of these ingredients during the application process.

In addition, patients naturally avoid the sun and are often more compliant with post-treatment care during the fall and winter months, making these seasons an optimal time for chemical treatments. However, because chemical peels have the potential to unveil new, healthy skin, it is essential to protect freshly treated skin by using a broad-spectrum sunscreen year-round, even when sun exposure is minimal.

It is equally important to treat the skin during the cooler months when its exfoliation process slows. When natural exfoliation decreases, so does the exposure of moisture-binding molecules within the dermis that regulate the skin’s moistness. This can give the skin a dull, dry appearance and cause symptoms such as dehydration and itchiness. Year-round, chemical peels provide a simple solution by exfoliating and further stimulating the skin’s natural expulsion of dead cells.

Various factors including the patient’s skin type, tissue sensitivities, peel ingredients, potential peel penetration and external influences over the healing process play a role when selecting the appropriate peel to effectively target various skin conditions.

Most aesthetic practices offer mild to moderate peels formulated with ingredients that enhance the skin’s clarity, color and tone. Peel ingredients may include trichloroacetic acid, resorcinol, Jessner’s solution or a blend of alpha and beta hydroxy acids, including glycolic, lactic, mandelic and salicylic acid.

SkinMedica offers three highly effective peels with various degrees of penetration that are well tolerated with most skin types. Vitalize Peel is a salicylic and lactic acid-based peel that is a favorite amongst our patients, as it addresses mild to moderate imperfections found in hyperpigmentation and melasma and delivers beautiful results. Most exfoliation with SkinMedica peels occurs over a two- to five-day period, leaving the skin immediately soft and vibrant; tissue response and aesthetic outcome may be further improved with a series of peels.

Most moderate-depth peels provide a host of benefits: improvement in surface irregularities such as unwanted sunspots and dark pigmentation, reduction in the appearance of fine lines, softening of skin texture, a decrease in clogged pores and acneic outbreaks and a temporary restoration of radiance.

As the seasons change, our skin adjusts and adapts. We often focus on how to improve the appearance of damaged tissue, yet prevention is also a crucial factor in achieving healthy and radiant skin. Little steps add up: Consistent treatment regimens that incorporate growth factors, antioxidants, sun protection and skin brighteners, along with in-office chemical peels, are key to patient success.

Featured product

SkinMedica TNS Ceramide Treatment Cream $67

SkinMedica's TNS Ceramide Treatment Cream restores moisture to heal, mend and soothe severely dry, damaged or compromised skin. Palmitoyl oligopeptide and tetrapeptide-7 regulate cell functionality and stimulate collagen production to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Vitamin A promotes new cell growth and TNS growth factor nourishes, conditions and seals in hydration.

Key benefits

  • Hydrates and helps restore skin's moisture balance

  • Restores skin's moisture barrier

  • Ideal for dry and post-procedure skin

Key ingredients

  • Palmitoyl Oligopeptide: a synthetic tripeptide designed to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles

  • Human Fibroblast Conditioned Media (TNS): a physiologically balanced, naturally secreted and stabilized combination of multiple natural messenger proteins

  • Hydroxypropyl Bispalmitamide MEA (Ceramide): skin barrier agent that helps promote and maintain the moisture mantle of the skin and enhances the skin texture