I read an article yesterday that said AHA’s were bad for your skin. This of course made me cringe because of my love for AHA’s and how they can improve the skin, but I kept on reading. The article said to avoid AHA and other peeling / lightening / bleaching agents because they make your skin more sun sensitive. This is true. Because of the dead skin cell exfoliation hydroxy acids cause, the newer skin cells that exposed ARE more sun sensitive. This is why every good esthetician will insist that you use a mineral sunblock and for the most part keep the sun’s rays off skin being treated with aggressive skin care products.
During the summer months, if you are into biking, golfing, hiking, swimming or any other outdoor activity and worry about gaining more hyper pigmentation, my advise would be to lay off of the glycolic moisturizer and cleanser. Discontinue use of serums, creams, gels and masques containing retinol, hydroquinoin or any other beta or alpha hydroxy acids. Switch to products with natural brightening agents such as vitamin C, mulberry, bearberry, licorice and enzymes from pineapple and papaya. These ingredients will brighten and nourish your complexion without making your skin more sun sensitive. Of course always use a mineral sunblock and reapply every two hours. Switching up your skin care routine keeps your skin energized and customizing your skin care routine keeps your skin protected throughout the seasons.
Which one is better? The answer lies within your skin type and lifestyle.
Dark skin type
I do not suggest micro/macroderm or chemical peels for Fitzpatrick skin types V- VI. These darker skin types are at a higher risk for possible hyperpigmentation from the treatment. If you are a Fitzpatrick type IV- VI, I suggest starting in your home with a medical grade skin care line that has alpha hydroxy acids. For professional treatments start with enzyme peels or the herb peel. Gradually, your skin will create a tolerance for stronger treatments.
Acneic Skin Type
I prefer using salicylic and glycolic type chemical peels because these acids help slow skin oil production, lighten pigmentation, dry up active lesions as well as encourage skin cell turnover. However, some of my clients do not feel comfortable with the flaking of skin you can experience 5-7 days after a chemical peel. With consistent treatments macrodermabration can clear problem skin, and without any visible downtime. Because waves of acne tend to come every four weeks, I suggest booking your appointment every 28 days for best results.