Will Chemical Peel Help Melasma?

Chemical peels are an incredibly effective and safe way to treat discoloration of the face and other parts of the body, such as the hands and legs, where hyperpigmentation occurs most often. When applied to the affected area, chemical peels work not only to decrease the appearance of hyperpigmentation, but also to prevent melanin buildup in the skin, causing skin discoloration. Glycolic acid peel for melasma is the most common chemical peel treatment option. Derived from sugar cane and cousin of alpha hydroxy acids, citric and lactic acid, glycolic acid is an organic compound with proven application for treating melasma.

After a light level glycolic acid peel, the skin may be slightly pink, but there will be little or no real peeling. A glycolic acid peel can significantly reduce the appearance of melasma over time. Users generally see the most dramatic improvements with eight to ten treatments, a full course that is available with a single purchase. Chemical peels offer significant benefits for treating melasma.

Researchers offer information from a review of recent advances in chemical peel treatments for melasma and acne. Peeling is versatile, ranging from superficial to deep. Dermatologists can adapt peels to patients' needs by choosing from several different types of exfoliating agents. Chemical peels are minimally invasive and relatively low-cost, Italian researchers report in an article published late last year in Giornale Italiano di Dermatologia e Venereologia.

At the lowest concentration of 15%, TCA can be used as a superficial peel and with a force greater than 35% it acts as an average depth peel. Chemical peels are the second line of treatment for melasma, improving the epidermal component. Preparing the skin, usually with 2% to 4% hydroquinone, prior to peeling is crucial and should be done at least four weeks before any melasma peel treatment, regardless of the substance used. A chemical peel is a procedure that removes the epidermis, the outermost layer of the skin, by controlling the destruction of the skin.

The different skin ethnicities of Fitzpatrick type IV-VI can react variously to the chemical agents used to peel melasma. An 85 percent lactic acid peel offers similar benefits to those of an at-home microdermabrasion treatment and is an excellent intermediate solution for those looking to prolong the results of deeper peels. Chemical peels have the ability to cause controlled epidermal discohesion and subsequent regeneration. Ultimately, chemical peel is usually sought only after melasma has been shown to be resistant to topical treatment (Sarkar).

Tretinoin peels versus GA peels in the treatment of melasma in dark-skinned patients have been studied by Khunger et al. In their review of recent advances in chemical peel treatments for melasma and acne, the authors report that superficial peeling, which affects the epidermis to the papillary dermis, primarily addresses melasma, dyschromia, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation, acne, and actinic keratosis. There is no single, definitive treatment option for melasma; one's particular complexion is generally the variable that decides the best chemical peel to use. Chemical peels are an incredibly effective and safe way to treat discoloration caused by melasma and eliminate skin discoloration.

Glycolic acid peel is one of the most common treatments for this condition and users generally see dramatic improvements with eight to ten treatments.

Rachelle Leonardi
Rachelle Leonardi

Certified coffee scholar. Award-winning beer advocate. Proud bacon guru. Award-winning web lover. Incurable coffee scholar. Food buff.

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