Skin Peels & Microdermabrasion

Skin Peels – Overview

Chemical peels are designed to exfoliate the upper layers of the epidermis.

They are indicated for:

Skin rejuvenation

Photo-aging (sun damage)


Acne and congested skin

Fine lines

Dry skin

A peel will also increase the penetration of your skin care products’ active ingredients and therefore increase their efficacy.

Chemical peels come in various types and strengths.  The most commonly used are the following:  glycolic acid, lactic acid, salicylic acid, Jessner’s and Trichloroacetic acid.

A course of chemical peels gives the best results.  The frequency and number of peels needed depends on the actual agents used.  Peels will not treat deep wrinkles, saggy skin or scarring.  For this we prefer to use our available lasers.

Your dermal therapist will discuss with you the most suitable peel according to your skin type as well as addressing your main concerns.  A plan will be formulated along with skin care routine recommendations to maintain peel results.

Chemical peels deliver immediate satisfactory results, promote the health of your skin and restore a healthy glow.  There is usually minimal downtime involved.  However, avoiding direct sun exposure and the application of a SPF 30+ is essential after a peel as your skin will be more sensitive to the harmful effects of UV rays.

Skin Peels at Shire Cosmetic Medicine

Glycolic Acid

Glycolic acid is an alpha-hydroxy-acid (AHA) and naturally derived from sugar cane, but is made synthetically in laboratory. Glycolic acid is the most common peeling agent used in clinics and also the most versatile. It comes in various strengths from 10% up to 60%. It can be used as one off treatment for quick rejuvenation in low concentration, is useful for acne, sun damage and uneven skin tone. A glycolic peel is left on the skin for approximately 3 minutes then removed and neutralized.

Lactic Acid

Also an alpha-hydroxy-acid is derived from milk and very similar to glycolic acid in its molecular structure, however contains an extra hydrogen group which gives it additional hydrating properties. Lactic acid is milder and good for younger or dry skin types. It also comes in various strengths from 10% to 60%. A blend of Lactic/ Glycolic 20% is a good option for a first time peel.


Jessners is classified as a superficial to medium depth peel. It is a blend of 3 peeling agents: Resorcinol, Lactic Acid and Salicylic Acid. Caution must be used for particular skin types. It is an excellent peel for acne prone skins and sun damage/aging skin. Jessners is applied in a “layers” technique. The amount of “frosting” on the skin after the peel is applied will determine the depth the peel penetration. Frosting is a whitening of the surface of the skin which last approximately 20 minutes. There is some discomfort expected with this type of peel and generally not suitable for a first time peel, unless the skin has already been prepared with cosmeceuticals containing specific ingredients.


This is a relatively new technique used to resurface and smooth facial skin. It is based on completely different principles to those of traditional dermabrasion and has a much safer profile.

The main indications for this therapy are:

  • Environmentally damaged skin and sunspots.
  • Age spots and fine wrinkles associated with aging.
  • Acne with blackheads, whiteheads, blemishes.
  • Scarring and acne scarring

Is it painful?
There is minimal pain and discomfort experienced for normal facial resurfacing purposes.
Is it Safe?
All reports to date indicate that this is one of the safest methods of facial resurfacing with the least risk of scarring and pigmentary changes.
What does the Treatment Involve?
At Shire Cosmetic Medicine the treatment is carried out by staff specialising in facial care. A course of 6-12 treatments are usually necessary depending on the level of treatment required. Results are usually evident by the third treatment and improve steadily with subsequent treatments, which are usually due at two weekly intervals, although this can be varied according to individual needs.
Do I Need to Take Special Precautions?
Treatment is inadvisable when Accutane (isotretinoin) has been used. It should also be delayed in the presence of skin infections and cold-sores. Avoidance of sun and the use of blocking creams are recommended during the healing period. Eczema, moles, precancerous and other undiagnosed skin conditions need to be checked by a medical practitioner or specialist prior to initiating treatment. How will I Feel after Treatment?
The skin remains a little red and warm for up to 48 hours. Skincare advice is given at the time of treatment and appropriate cleansers and creams can be included in the course of treatment if required.

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