The Best Way to Use a Lactic Acid Peel

Published: 10th August 2011
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The Best Way to Use a Lactic Acid Peel

Using a lactic acid peel can be a great way to reduce wrinkles and age spots. It is a strong form of chemical exfoliation that removes dull damaged skin to expose fresh, younger looking skin below. By properly treating your skin before and after, you achieve powerful results in your anti aging routine.

Lactic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid, similar to glycolic acid. Skin care products containing alpha hydroxy acids, have been used for a long time and are very effective. Lactic acid peels are not usually as strong as glycolic acid peels, and can be a better choice for people with dark complexions because they are less likely to bleach the skin.

In the past, you would have to see an esthetician or dermatologist for an effective peel. Today, you can find an at home lactic acid peel similar to the expensive professional peels. Peeling at home has many advantages besides price. Youíll be able to peel more frequently. Using mid level peel often is more effective than using a strong peel occasionally. Youíll also be able to go at your own pace, and take the time beforehand to get your skin used to lactic acid. This crucial step is often overlooked by skin care professionals, which can result in serious irritation and burning.

Donít start off with the strongest chemical peel you can find. Your skin needs to adjust to alpha hydroxy acids so that they work properly. The best way to do this is to use milder products like a lotion or cream. Use something mild for a week or two before moving up to a low level peel. A good concentration to start at is 20%. Use that monthly or every 6 weeks for a while before trying out a strong lactic acid peel, which is usually around 50%. Some peels also list the pH of the product. Remember that a lower number is a more acidic and therefore stronger.

After your peel, youíll need to treat your skin delicately. The new skin that is exposed will be red and sensitive. Donít use other forms of exfoliation like a facial scrub, exfoliating lotions that contain lactic or glycolic acid, or microdermabrasion. Pamper the new skin with renewing skin care products like peptide or botanical creams. Avoid using high levels of Vitamin C or retinoids, which can have a peeling effect. Mild products containing these nutrients can be beneficial. Be sure to use sunblock daily for 2 weeks of more because your skin will burn easier due to increased sun sensitivity.

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