HydraFacial vs. Chemical peels: Which is right for you?
If you’ve decided to have a medical grade skin treatment either to address a specific concern (such as acne) or to improve the health of your skin in general, you will likely have researched both chemical peel treatments and the HydraFacial and may now be wondering which is right for you. The answer to this depends on what you would like to address. There are three different depths of chemical peels – superficial, medium, and deep – and they target a range of skin concerns. The HydraFacial, on the other hand, is a multi-step, medical-grade resurfacing treatment. However, one of those steps is a mild peel, so in some ways, the two procedures are related.
But, when it comes down to deciding whether a HydraFacial or a chemical peel will be right for you, the first step is to understand the differences between the two. This is everything that you need to know.
What is a HydraFacial, and how does it work?
The HydraFacial is a medical-grade hydradermabrasion device that incorporates six targeted steps to cleanse, exfoliate, hydrate, and extract dead skin cells and impurities. After these steps, it infuses the skin with antioxidants, peptides, and hyaluronic acid. This multi-step rejuvenation procedure is used to invigorate the skin and treat various skin problems such as enlarged or clogged pores, fine lines, wrinkles, dark spots, dry skin, acne, and dullness.
It employs a unique, spiral suction tip to dislodge impurities and deliver targeted serums deep into the pores for intense hydration and softening. This is one element that makes the HydraFacial so unique – we can apply booster serums at this stage to target specific concerns such as acne, ageing, pigmentation, or rosacea for a personalised result. This pain-free combination of treatment steps stimulates collagen production and bestows fresher, healthier-looking skin whilst treating undesirable skin issues and concerns.
What is the downtime of the HydraFacial?
The HydraFacial is a fast, efficient treatment that can take as little as 30 minutes. After treatment, you can apply makeup (if you wish) and return to your normal activities straight away as there is no downtime. Whilst the treatment exfoliates the skin, it also infuses the deeper layers with hydrating ingredients. So unlike with many chemical peels, you are unlikely to experience peeling following treatment.
What do chemical peels do?
Chemical peels dissolve the build-up of dead skin cells, stubborn grime, and excess oil on the skin’s surface to reveal fresher, healthier skin beneath, which results in a smoother complexion that reflects light better and absorbs skin products more effectively to maximise their performance.
There are several professional chemical peels now available in a variety of strengths, each catering to different skin concerns, from acne to pigmentation to fine lines, wrinkles and dullness.
The ingredients used in chemical peels – whether glycolic or salicylic acid or retinol – also stimulate skin repair in the deeper layers of the skin, thickening the dermis and improving its health, leaving your skin in better shape overall.
What is the downtime of a chemical peel?
The downtime of a chemical peel varies depending on the strength of the ingredients. Peels containing glycolic or lactic acid are usually mild and have no associated downtime apart from minor flaking in the days immediately afterwards.
Moderate peels, such as TCA or retinol peels, are more potent and may require a few days of downtime due to the flaking and peeling of the skin. Deep peels, like phenol peels, penetrate to the deep dermis ensuring the removal of deeply damaged skin cells. They’re used to treat deeper wrinkles, severe sun damage and acne scarring. These peels require more downtime as they penetrate as your skin will not just be peeling but will be vulnerable to infection.
The peeling usually starts 3-4 days after treatment as the skin begins to slough off and shed its layers, continuing for 5-7 days, depending on the intensity, depth, and level of penetration.
What’s the best treatment for you?
Deciding whether to opt for a HydraFacial or a chemical peel to achieve your skin goals usually comes down to your particular skin concerns and your lifestyle.
A course of HydraFacial treatments is an excellent way to resurface the skin, tackle mild skin conditions, or refresh the skin and enhance radiance before a big event. However, if you wish to tackle a more severe skin complaint such as acne scarring or sun damage, a medium to deep peel may be the better choice.
The best thing about the HydraFacial is that it’s suitable for all skin types, even individuals with sensitive skin. There’s no needling, pinching, abrasion, or downtime, whereas a chemical peel can make the skin peel for several days. The process helps fight the early signs of ageing, protects the skin from environmental pollution and harmful free radicals, and is also very gentle without any discomfort or risk of reaction. It’s an excellent skin maintenance treatment and is often used to complement the effects of other treatments such as dermal fillers.
If you’d like to find out more about these skin treatments, and establish a treatment plan tailored to your requirements, click here to book a skin health assessment with one of our expert practitioners.
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Disclaimer: Please be aware that results and benefits may vary from patient to patient taking into consideration factors such as age, lifestyle and medical history.