Microdermabrasion and facial peel are two of the most popular non-surgical facial rejuvenation therapies. They are two very different means to the same end: softer, smoother skin.
In the microdermabrasion procedure, crystals of aluminum oxide, salt, or sodium bicarbonate are sprayed across the skin at very close range. This breaks up skin cells and imperfections, revealing a layer of fresher, smoother skin. The process can not only rid your face of dry, rough skin, but also reduces the appearance of fine lines, acne scars, and uneven pigmentation.
A facial peel is also called a chemical peel, since it uses chemicals to remove dead skin and surface imperfections. Peels can be light, medium, or deep; the level of treatment is controlled by the strength of the chemical solution used. Glycolic acid is commonly used for a light peel; the stronger trichloroacetic acid, for medium or deep peels.
During a facial peel, upper skin layers are separated and peeled away; the healing process promotes growth of new skin, leaving your face smoother and softer. The procedure is effective for reducing the appearance of fine lines, light freckling and sun damage, enlarged pores, and irregular pigmentation.
While anesthesia is not normally required for microdermabrasion, it may be appropriate for a facial peel; the level of anesthesia depends on the depth of the procedure.
Recovery from a facial peel can take from a few days to two weeks. A light peel is likely to result in slight reddening of the skin. Deeper peels may produce darker reddening or blistering.
If you think facial rejuvenation with microdermabrasion or a chemical peel is right for you, schedule a consultation with a dermatologist. An evaluation of your skin condition, diet, lifestyle, and other factors will help you decide which treatment is most appropriate and set reasonable expectations for the outcome.