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A skin care professional applies a professional peel to the forehead

It's no secret that professional peels can elevate your skin care game. Think deep exfoliation that stimulates healthy skin cell and collagen production, controls and improves the appearance of acne, and reduces dark spots. In short, professional chemical peels give you that glow that says "I woke up like this."

But with so many different kinds of chemical peels available, how can you find the one that will benefit your skin the most? From mild to medical strength, read on to explore the three types of chemical peels and find the best one for your skin's unique needs.


What Do Professional Peels Help With?

Professional peels leverage a special acid solution to remove your top layer of old skin so it can be replaced with fresh, healthier skin, reducing acne, fine lines, and discoloration.

PCA SKIN, a leader in professional skin care, has been pioneering and perfecting the art of professional peels for over 30 years so you can look and feel your best. Backed by science, these peels are about more than just exfoliation; they deliver real results that improve skin tone and texture. Whether it's breakouts crashing your party, wrinkles that show you've lived and laughed, or dark spots from your days of sunbathing, there's a peel out there calling your name.

And it's not just your face that can benefit from professional peels. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, you can also get chemical peels on your chest, neck, and hands.


What Are the Different Kinds of Chemical Peels?

Chemical peels come in different depths, and each has its way of working magic on your skin. Here's a quick overview and what to consider based on your skin type.

Woman smiling in mirror after receiving peel treatment


Light Peels

These are the mildest types of chemical peels, working only on the outermost, or superficial, layer of skin. They're great for brightening and refreshing your complexion with minimal downtime.

  • Dry skin: Pick a peel that offers hydration alongside exfoliation. Light peels with Lactic Acid can be a great choice, gently removing dead skin cells while attracting moisture to the skin.
  • Sensitive skin: Look for peels with soothing ingredients like Mandelic Acid. Light peels are usually the safest bet for this skin type, as they're less likely to irritate your skin.


Medium-Depth Peels

A step up, these peels go deeper, targeting the outer and middle layers of your skin. They're ideal for addressing acne, age spots, fine lines, and freckles.

  • Oily skin: If you're battling excess oil and acne, try medium-depth peels, such as those with Salicylic Acid, to deeply cleanse pores and reduce oil production.
  • Combination skin: This skin type may benefit from a tailored approach. Light peels can help with dry areas, while medium-depth peels can tackle oilier zones.


Deep Peels

Medical-strength deep peels are the most intensive option, as they penetrate several layers of skin. These peels help with your more significant skin woes.

  • Severe acne, deep wrinkles, and scars: You'll get more dramatic results with deep peels than light or medium-depth peels, but they require more recovery time.


Finding Your Perfect Peel by Skin Type and Concern

When choosing a professional peel, your skin type and concerns are your guiding stars. Do you have reactive, sensitive skin in need of a little TLC? Maybe you hope to reduce regular acne breakouts, minimize flaking and tightness associated with dry skin, or have combination skin that keeps you guessing. Everyone's complexion has unique needs, and different kinds of chemical peels are designed to meet you where you're at.

To help narrow down your options, your best bet is to consult with a certified skin care professional to match you with a gentle yet effective peel based on your specific situation.


Unlock the Power of Peels with Consistency

Once you've found a peel that works for you, your skin care professional will recommend when to return for your next treatment, depending on the peel type and your goals. Professionals typically recommend somewhere between every four to six weeks to support skin concerns while giving your skin time to bounce back and soak up all those peel perks. Remember: Consistency is key. While a single professional peel can noticeably improve skin tone and texture, a series of peels will keep your skin at the height of its glow game.

With some skin concerns, such as hyperpigmentation and acne, you can expect to see selfie-worthy changes after about four to six treatments.


Pamper Your Skin Post-Peel

After your peel, keep your skin hydrated with your favorite moisturizer (try PCA SKIN Aprés Peel® Hydrating Balm), and use a broad-spectrum sunscreen before you step out of the house. Your skin will be a bit more sun-shy post-peel. Hold off on any skin care products that can irritate or overexfoliate skin, like those with Retinol, for about a week.


Your Skin, Your Journey

Choosing a professional peel is an exciting step in your skin care journey. Whether it's tackling dryness, acne, discoloration, or a combination of concerns, there's joy in finding a peel that's just right for you. And you're not alone. PCA SKIN is here to help you feel your best, with each treatment and product designed to deliver real results. If you're ready to take that next step, contact a PCA SKIN certified professional to reveal the healthy, glowing skin you deserve to live in.


Daisy Brumby
Daisy Brumby is a journalist turned beauty writer who specializes in all things skincare. She has written for West Dermatology, the Skin and Cancer Institute, and The Aesthetic Guide. What’s her skin care secret? She swears by the power of sunscreen to protect skin and Retinol to rejuvenate it.