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I have some unsightly acne scars unfortunately... now considering the possible treatment options, I have been thinking that it would be good to try a chemical peel. I do know that chemical peels are not always a good solution, that some scarring may still be left over even after a chemical peel, or that a series of peels is actually necessary. In terms of which chemical peels though, do you consider lactic acid, TCA, phenol, Jessner, or some other chemical peel to be the best peel for acne scarring? And if you have had chemical peels for acne scarring yourself then what was the result and how satisfied are you?

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Hey,

If your acne scars are fairly mild and recent, you may want to consider a glycolic acid peel or a series of them. Though this is a superficial peel, its unusually small molecules are such that it penetrates the skin very well and it is excellent at correcting superficial damage.

For a deeper peel that can treat deeper scars, a trichloracetic might be a good option for you. Primarily known for its ability to correct sun damage, this peel is also very good for people with moderate acne scars. It can be used in people with darker skin as well.

Phenol peels of course are the deepest peels, which also come with serious downtime as well as some risks. While this may be a good option for you if your scars are severe, laser resurfacing may actually be a better option that carries fewer risks of side effects.

Go see a dermatologist and remain open about the possibilities. Just because you have "chemical peel" stick in your mind right now does not mean that a chemical peel is the best choice for treating acne scars. They may also suggest things such as dermarolling, and that is something to definitely consider.

Rosie

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Chemical peels certainly have a role to play in the care of "problematic skin", and they are usually administered professionally. I was wondering though, whether you had already considered something such as Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel. These are easy to use at home. You start off by wiping the first pad over your skin, waiting, feeling the action, and then repeating for the second pad. This rids your skin of excess sebum as well as literally drying active pimples off in one go in many cases. I highly recommend you look into this if you are looking for something to administer at home on a regular basis.

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That is a very interesting idea actually, and it is the first time that I have heard about these "daily peels", so I am sure going to look this up. Thank you for the tip.

As for the OP, I would say that it is generally best to start with the gentlest possible peel, which is alpha hydroxy acid peels. If a few sessions of AHA peels do not improve your acne scars, talk to your derm about TCA peels as well, which are a little deeper and penetrate the skin better. These peels have more downtime but work better.
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Hmm.. well the thing is that chemical peels, the medium to deep chemical peels already discussed above, do have the potential to reduce scarring. If it is skin discoloration that you have left over from your acne as opposed to actual scars on the other hand, which is true for many people who have acne, then microdermabrasion may well be a better treatment for you. If you have deeper scars as well as discoloration, then neither of these options will work for you very well and you will want to look into laser resurfacing treatment for your acne scars instead.
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What you are really asking here is probably "what is the best treatment for acne?", which is a million-dollar question! I cannot give you answers that differ from those of others. I have read before that you can get those blue light lasers (Talika I think?) for home use now, which sounds rather promising because it is designed for home use rather than using a chemical peel for spa use at home. Even things as simple as salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide can make a big difference in acne though, but consulting a dermatologist is always best.

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Hi!

Some chemical peels do help you clear acne scars from your face and even other areas of the body. There are many kinds of chemical peel, from lactic acid, mandelic acid, salicylic acid, polydyrdroxy acid, TCA, amino fruit acid, all kinds, and they are each available in different strengths depending on your needs as well, while some are inherently more potent than others. Some are applied at cosmetic spas, for more serious peels you do have to see a plastic surgeon. You may need multiple sessions, and not all scars can be removed with these chemical peels, but even medium deep scars can be improved greatly. If you do see a plastic surgeon they can always recommend another treatment if the chemical peel route is not right for you.
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Yes! It worked for me! After my TCA peel, my skin looked pretty awful for a week, worse than I was prepared for. I was so scared that my skin was going to be messed up, scarred more than it was, but thankfully as my skin started peeling and that really tight phase wore off slowly, a new skin emerged that looked better than I could even have dreamed of. My acne scars are still partially there, but some are gone altogether and the few that remain do look so much less visible than before. I am also mixed, so know that chemical peels can worked for mixed skin.
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That is great to hear, guest! I have often heard it said that chemical peels have very varying results on people with darker, non-Caucasian skin, but also that TCA is the best chemical peel for those with darker skin. I am wondering how something like that would work on my own very sensitive skin. Probably not very well, correct? My skin reacts to everything but a select few tried and tested products and always ends up coming out in a rash and being really, really dry. Do you have any idea what a TCA peel might do for my skin?

Rosie
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If you are looking to get rid of acne scars, there are a number of ways in which you can try to achieve this.

These include:

1. Injectable fillers to round the scars out thus making them less visible
2. Electrodessication
3. Punch excision
4. Laser treatment
5. Dermabrasion
6. Chemical peels

It is important to realize that acne scars come in different types though. They include pitted, ice pick, box car and depressed scars. Different scars will react differently to all these treatments so I do propose that you see a dermatologist about your acne scars to discuss in detail what would work best in your case.
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Dark acne scars are very different from indented scars. Ematrix RF, subcision, acne surgery, TCA Cross, and fractional lasers can help with indented atrophic scars. Chemical peels such as Melapeels, Melapads daily exfoliating pads by Kare MD Skin Health, and lighter chemical peels can all help with dark acne scars. I would also consider Melarase AM and Melarase PM. Dr. Karamanoukian
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