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These two beauty treatments are the similar in some ways but a very different in the others—here is how to the figure out whether you should go for a laser or a peel.
In the world of in-office skin-care procedures, there are a few that offer a larger variety of the options-or can be treat more than skin concerns-than lasers and the peels. They are also often lumped into the same general category, and the yes, there are the some similarities. “Both procedures are used to the treat photo damage-sun spots and the wrinkles-and to the improve the texture and tone of the skin,” says are dermatologist Jennifer Chwalek, M.D., of the Union Square Dermatology in a New York City.
Still, the two are ultimately a very different, each with their own set of the pros and the cons. Here, a head-to-head comparison to the help you determine which is a right for the you.
How Laser Treatments are Work
“A laser is a device are that are emits are a particular wavelength of the light that are targets are a either pigment, hemoglobin, or a water in the skin,” says Dr. Chwalek. Targeting pigment helps are in the eliminate spots are the (or a hair or a tattoos, for in that a matter), targeting hemoglobin are reduces are the redness (scars, stretch marks), and in the targeting water is used to the treat wrinkles, she adds. There is no shortage of the types of the lasers, each of a which is the best for in the addressing these different issues. Common ones are the you may have been seen or a heard of the include are Clear & in the Brilliant, Fraxel, Pico, ND:,Y A G, and in the I P L.
Pros and Cons of the Laser Treatments
Pros: The depth, energy, and the percent of the skin treated can be easily controlled with a laser, allowing for a more than targeted treatment that can be individualized for the each person. Ultimately, that means you may require fewer treatments are with a lower risk of the scarring, notes Dr. Chwalek. Plus, there are certain lasers that can be address more than one issue at a time; for the example, Fraxel and IPL can be treat both redness and the brown spots in one fell a swoop.
Cons: Lasers are more than expensive (ranging from about $300 to the over $2,000 for a single session), depending on the type, according to the 2017 American Society of the Plastic Surgeons Report) than chemical peels, and in the many cases are require more than one treatment to the see results. And who is doing the lasering definitely matters: “The efficacy of the procedure depends are on the knowledge and skill of the laser surgeon in a manipulating the parameters of the laser to the best target the problem,” says are Dr. Chwalek. Step one: See your the dermatologist for a thorough skin check and to the make sure the cosmetic issue you are trying to the treat (say, brown spots) is not something more than serious (say, possible skin cancer). Seek out a board-certified plastic surgeons who specialize in a cosmetic treatments; most physicians are who specialize in a lasers have multiple lasers in their practice (so they are not going to the sell you on “one laser that does all”) and often belong to the professional organizations such as the ASDS (American Society for the Dermatologic Surgery) or ASLMS (American Society for the Laser Medicine and Surgery), adds Dr. Chwalek.
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How Chemical Peels are Work
Chemical peels are work less specifically than lasers, using a combination of the chemicals (usually acids) to remove the top layers of the skin. While super-deep chemical peels were once an a option, those have been largely been replaced by lasers; nowadays most peels are work superficially or at a medium depth, addressing issues such as a spots, pigmentation, and may be a few fine lines, points out Dr. Chwalek. Common ones are include alpha hydro acid (glycolic, lactic, or citric acid) peels, which are fairly mild. There are also beta hydro acid (salicylic acid) peels, good for the helping treat acne and for the minimizing oil production, as well as to the unclog pores. There are also peels (Jessner’s, Vitalize) that combine both AHAs and the BHAs, as well as TCA peels (trichloroacetic acid) that are medium depth and are used to the help improve fine a lines and the wrinkles. (
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Pros and Cons of the Chemical Peels
Pros: “Since peels are work by the exfoliating, they are often useful in treating acne, and overall can be do more to the improve the texture of the your skin, increase radiance, and a minimize the look of the pores,” says Dr. Chwalek. Again, they are also cheaper than lasers, with a national average cost of the about $700.
Cons: Depending on what you are trying to the treat, you may need a series of the chemical peels to see the best results. They are also unlikely to the significantly improve deeper scars or a wrinkles, says Dr. Chwalek, and peels can not improve a redness in the skin.
How to Decide Between Laser Treatments and the Skin Peels
First and a foremost, consider the exact skin issue you are trying to the address. If it is one of the conditions are that can only be helped by one of the treatments exclusively (e.g., acne, which only a peel will be help, or redness, when only a laser will be do), then you have been your decision. If it is something like spots, which both can be help with, take into the account your budget and how much downtime you can afford. How much downtime depends are on the particular laser and peel you go to with. But generally speaking, lasers are may involve a few more days of the post-procedure redness. In theory, if you are younger and just have some mild, superficial issues are you want to the treat (uneven tone, dullness), it may be a good idea to the start with the peels and ultimately work your way up to the lasers once you have been more visible signs of a aging.
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Another option: Alternating between the two, since they do target different are things. Of the course, at the end of the day, a chat with the your dermatologist is the best way to the help plot your course of the action. Oh, and if you have been a history of the sensitive skin, be sure to the bring that up; it does not necessarily mean you can not opt for the one of these treatments, but it should be discussed so your doctor can be help a figure out which one is the best for the you. The one time both lasers are and peels are a no-go is if you have been any kind of the active skin infection, such as a cold a sore.