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Chemical peel vs Laser & Microdermabrasion

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Filed under Chemical Peels At Home

You are likely familiar with Chemical peels, Lasers and Microdermabrasion- some of the best known skin resurfacing procedures out there. You likely also have a preference and all because you know what works best for you.

In this article however, I wish to let your mind wander for a moment- getting the advantages and disadvantages of each of the three including costs, availability, after effects, downtime and the like and in the end, I hope you will have your finger pointed at one. To begin with, lets define the three skin resurfacing regimes; –

Chemical peel

This is a body treatment, by use of chemical solutions to take care of unwanted skin botches and irritations or dead skin among others. There are three major types, used depending on the severity of one’s skin/ facial condition. The three are Superficial peels (which are the most common, safest and popular), Medium peels and Deep peels. Chemical peel usage is the safest of the three mostly owing to its relatively low (and in some cases NO) downtime.

Laser resurfacing

Here, a laser is used to wound the skin and remove tiny layers of skin from the body for good effect. There is another, non-abrasive laser procedure but which comes with even much less effectiveness that can be used so people who take up laser often go for the abrasive resurfacing which also results in significant downtime. One significant disadvantage of this procedure as opposed to chemical peels for example is that when applying it, skin in areas of the neck, chest and hands are best avoided. This is because the skin around this area doesn’t heal as fast as the other, which will leave the person’s entire skin looking patched up at these areas.


In microdermabrasion, tiny and rough grains are applied to the skin to remove its upper layers. There are different creams and treatments that have incorporated this solution for safe microdermabrasion and can be found in saloons or medical centres and pharmacies.

It has been found to be a cheaper alternative to laser, plastic surgery and botox injections. Its results are very good and it is becoming- along with chemical peels- the treatment of choice for Hollywood celebrities and other businessmen or ordinary people wishing to get a facelift.

All three are safe when administered with care and caution but there’s a greater price to pay for ignorance- most often severe damage to skin. To that, while professionals generally agree that all three methods have safe outcomes, the individual needs of a person’s skin will likely require that she chooses only one and not two or three of the lot. Chemical peels for example are the most universal (applicable on very many skin types and conditions) compared to laser and microdermabrasion but even then, the deeper the peel, the more care needed.

Chemical peels remain the most popular though, because unlike microdermabrasion (with which they share the most properties), the chemical peel is the most dynamic and some options have been known to be even user adjustable. Case in point would be our very own fruit peel where a user can just add their fruit of choice to the peel and they are good to go.

Laser resurfacing and microdermabrasion options- especially the latter- might be safe, but their outcomes are what require the greatest attention. Because both procedures remove old skin and leave new skin to develop, there’s a need for protection from sunlight especially right after the procedure. This is also necessary for some chemical peels, especially medium and deep peels. To that, there are also peels that offer sun-protection.

The biggest point here is this; it would appear that there are three safe options, all of which are highly used and recommended by people with some of the finest skin in Hollywood and beyond. However, understanding your skin’s requirement post resurfacing should be a key factor to which of the three options you will go for.

Consider this too; you will more likely than not need a chemical peel to correct a bad laser resurfacing job if any.

Also, you will likely need a chemical peel to correct a bad day at the dermatologist’s office or the results of a poorly applied microdermabrasion and you will also likely need a chemical peel to correct a bad chemical peel application!

The end result of this all is that it would seem that beauty worldwide today seems to lean more towards the application of chemicals to the skin and this, while good, can have its fair share of side effects.

To begin with, deep peels tend to take too long to heal and a person can’t be able to resume her duties for weeks. Same to medium skin peels and to a very much (even negligible) less extent superficial peels.

That the chemical peels come in boundless variety is its biggest argument against the above disadvantage because its diversity allows professionals to recommend very specific treatment to different skin types. There are lots of treatments which report no downtime.

Also, the ability to treat more skin problems than just texture and balance would explain its much wider usage especially as laser and microdermabrasion are much more limited.

Chemical peels are known to be applicable to acne, rosacea, sun damage, sun protection, wrinkles and fine lines among a myriad of other conditions. Laser and microdermabrasion on the other hand will be mostly applied to fine lines and wrinkles as well as sun damaged skin.

The people who have had successful skin resurfacing procedures have all mostly had the benefit of having experienced people supervising and advising them or have looked up reliable information from the web. It is not valuable to the skin to apply something that may cause irritations.

Professional assistance and advice is highly recommended for cases that require resurfacing especially if it will be Laser resurfacing and/ or microdermabrasion. A chemical peel may offer extra flexibility, but it too will need some professionalism in application anytime.