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PCA Skin: Chemical Peels

PCA Skin: Chemical Peels

The truth about chemical peels

Everything you need to know before your first treatment

Chemical peels are an important part of skin health. As an effective treatment option for most skin types and concerns, they improve tone, texture, fine lines and wrinkles, breakouts and dark spots, but many people are intimidated to go in for their first peel treatment. The fear of leaving with a bright red face that hurts prevents some from experiencing the many benefits of a peel. The post-peel reality is a glowing, healthy complexion. Here’s everything you need to know before your first PCA SKIN chemical peel: Peeling is exfoliation. When your skin peels or flakes after a treatment your skin is shedding dead or damaged surface cells and revealing new, healthy skin cells on the surface. This action is called cell turnover. Supporting the cell turnover process with chemical peels is what allows the skin to shed dead cells and bring new, fresh skin to the surface, free of signs of aging, sun damage, dirt, and debris. The result is glowing skin. You won’t necessarily experience visible peeling. That doesn’t mean your treatment was ineffective. Everyone experiences different levels of peeling, dependent upon skin type, resilience, type of peel and the number of layers applied. Some people experience ‘sheeting,’ when large portions of the skin peel off at once. Some experience ‘flaking,’ when small pieces of skin peel off, similar to dry, winter skin or mild peeling after a sunburn. Others experience exfoliation that is not visible. If you don’t peel, your skin is still exfoliating. In this case, the exfoliation is happening on a cellular level that can’t be seen by the naked eye. Typically, the deeper the peel you receive, the more extensive peeling you will experience. Talk to your PCA Certified Professional to find out what type of peel is best for your skin. Peels are easy to work into a busy lifestyle. There is no downtime with PCA SKIN chemical peels — you’ll leave your appointment with a healthy glow and able to carry on with your regular activities. There are steps to ensure that your results are maximized. Following a post-procedure regimen recommended by your PCA Certified Professional following your treatment will enhance your results and keep peeling and redness to a minimum. You should also avoid anything that causes sweating for 48 hours after treatment. Your clinician will give you more detailed instructions after your procedure, catered to your skin’s needs.

PCA Skin Peels

PCA skin professional treatments are scientifically formulated to gently stimulate, firm, and tighten skin. Twenty years ago, PCA originated light to medium peels for use by physicians and highly trained skin care professionals to help you reach your skin goals. Clinically researched formulations help to reduce the depth of surface lines, smooth rough skin texture, treat skin discoloration and redness, and assist in clearing acneic/blemished skin without the downtime often associated with traditional chemical peels. These progressive in-office treatment complement PCA Skin daily care products to speed the process toward visible, proven results. Our aestheticians will access your skin for the perfect combination of PCA Skin professional treatment and daily care products to dramatically improve skin health for a more beautiful complexion.

PCA Skin Peels include:

Modified and Enhanced Jessners
These gentle and innovative, blended formulations effectively exfoliate while brightening and inhibiting pigment production. They help to repair and reduce breakout, control oil and soften lines to provide even and smooth skin texture. Price includes PCA post peel kit.
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Our skin-friendly versions of these effective peels address various skin conditions without the discomfort and downtime with traditional TCA peels.
These blends contain a variety of beneficial ingredients to help treat acne, hyperpigmentation, fine lines and wrinkles while leaving the skin plump and hydrated.

Ultra Peel Forte
Those with resilient skin who have more dramatic wrinkling, sun damage and acne scarring are the best candidates for this deeper and more active treatment.  The skin is left smooth and hydrated, with improved tone and texture.

6% Pure Retinol Peel
Also for those with more resilient skin who seek more extensive peeling, leading to smooth, even skin.  Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, this peel is designed to treat aging skin, pigment disorders, smokers’ skin and photo damaged skin.

All peel prices include a PCA post-peel kit.


Q. How much downtime is expected with a peel?
 A. There is little to no downtime whatsoever with PCA chemical peels. You can actually receive a peel on your lunch hour and return to work. You will be shinny and possibly show signs of redness but it will not stop you from doing what you need to do. During the time of peeling, you may not want people to see you but you can physically do anything you need.

Q.When will I start “peeling”, for how long and how much? A. Everyone’s experience will be different. However, on an average, you will see flaking by day two or three following the treatment. It is possible to see flaking for up to five or six days. With all PCA peels, only light to medium exfoliation will be experienced.

Q. How irritating is a peel? A. PCA peels are only slightly irritating. You may experience mild burning or stinging, which is transient.

Q. Can a person who is in the sun a lot receive a peel? A. Yes, only if they are compliant with using sunscreen protection and avoiding the sun 48 hours after a peel. If you are getting peels to lighten the skin, Perfecting Protection (SPF 30+) is ideal to reduce any chance of further hyperpigmentation due to its enhanced lightening ingredients of Bearberry, Licorice Root Extract, Kojic Acid, Mulberry Root and Lactic Acid.

Q. What peels can be used on someone who frequently works out? A. Someone who frequently works out can have any peel but must wait 48 hours after the treatment to exercise. If you don’t want to wait, any non-chemical or retinol peel is a great choice. The Esthetique or our Ultra Peel™ II which is an acid-free, time-released retinol cream are great choices. They have a delayed flaking action that creates no irritation or downtime and leaves the skin glowing and hydrated.

Q. My skin is very thin. Why would I want to peel? Wouldn’t that make my skin thinner? A. If your skin is dry and thin, often there is a buildup of dead cells that actually keep your home care products from penetrating. Having a retinol treatment will remove the surface buildup, hydrate the skin and give it a more plump, “thicker” appearance. The use of Vitamin C products in the treatment, as well as in your home care program, will help to build the collagen in your skin, thus making it stronger and more durable.

Q. Can pregnant or lactating women receive a peel? A. No, but there are other treatments available.

Q. Can someone using Retin-A® or Accutane® have any PCA Peel treatments? A. We generally recommend that Retin-A® use is stopped five days prior to a peel and five days post treatment because of potential irritation and uneven peel penetration. Accutane® users tend to have very dry and sensitive skin and need to be treated only with peels that are appropriate for their skin type. We have found that the PCA non-peel solutions are Accutane® friendly. However, your skin care specialist should always be made aware of any Retin-A® or Accutane® use and my recommend you postpone treatment if the skin is too reactive.

Q. What is the difference between PCA and glycolic peels? A. Glycolic acid will dehydrate skin and make pores larger after extended use. PCA uses lactic and citric acids which are skin-friendly because they are natural constituents of your skin. PCA peels are unique because they are moisturizing and hydrating and leave your skin fresh, soft and supple, the way it wants to be!


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After receiving your chemical peel, you may experience some light flaking in a few localized areas for up to five days and slight redness for one to twelve hours. Although you may or may not actually “peel” during the first one or two treatments, you will probably experience slight exfoliation and your skin will feel tight and pulled. Patients should always follow the Home Care Regimen sheet provided by their technician, but the following post-treatment tips are also recommended to maximize the benefits to your skin:
• Do not apply any medications following treatment not recommended by your technician, including AHA products.
• It is ideal to let the skin stabilize and rest overnight, but mineral makeup can be applied following the treatment if absolutely necessary.
• Avoid direct sun exposure and excessive heat. Use your PCA Hydrator Plus (SPF 30) or Protecting Hydrator (SPF 30), Weightless Protection (SPF 45) or Perfecting Protection (SPF 30) for daily sunscreen protection.
• Do not pick at or pull on any loosening or exfoliating skin. This could potentially cause hyperpigmentation.
• Home use of Pigment Gel® is recommended twice a day to continue lightening hyperpigmented areas.
• Do NOT go to a tanning booth for a least three weeks before or after a treatment.
• Discontinue the use of Retin-A®/Renova® or Differin® for seven days after treatment.
• Do not have electrolysis, collagen injections, Botox, threading, facial waxing or use depilatories for approximately seven days after treatment.
• Do not schedule another treatment until your technician advises you to do so.


• Do not apply ice or water to the treated areas.
• Do not put the face directly into a hot shower spray. Do not use Jacuzzis, steam rooms or saunas.
• Do not go swimming or participate in activities that would cause excessive perspiration.
• Do not use a Clarisonic brush, washcloth, Buff-Puff’s or other means of mechanical exfoliation.- Do not direct a hair dryer onto the treated area.- Stay cool! Getting heated internally can cause hyperpigmentation.