How to Do a Chemical Peel at Home

These at-home peels will give you spa facial-like results, no appointments needed!

Hailed by experts as one of the most effective skin care solutions, a chemical peel treatment is a procedure that refines the skin’s surface by removing the top layers of dead skin cells to reveal smoother, glowing and glass-like skin. And the best part is, you can do it at home!

Related Article: Chemical vs Physical Exfoliator - Which One is Better for You?

At-Home Chemical Peels vs. Professional Chemical Peel

Professional chemical peels typically use a higher concentration of acids, which can penetrate deeper into the skin and have longer-lasting effects. This is why this procedure can only be performed by a professional, and done only a few times or once in a year.

An at-home peel, on the other hand, generally utilises milder formulas that can be used once a week or as a monthly or bi-monthly treatment, depending on your skin and the formula itself. The main job of these peels is to remove the outermost layer of dead skin cells, and this will also help improve your other skin concerns, such as acne, the appearance of wrinkles, dullness, hyperpigmentation, and clogged pores.

However, keep in mind that just because at-home chemical peels are gentler, it doesn’t mean that they can’t cause skin irritation! We always recommend patch testing any new products you use, preferably on the inside of your wrist or elbow if you're not comfortable with putting them on your face.

Best & Recommended At-Home Peels To Try

Korean skin care are best known for their gentle yet effective products, and their chemical peels are no exception! Instead of using high amounts of retinol or acids that can potentially cause redness or irritation, Korean brands generally opt for gentler ingredients like PHA or Betaine Salicylate to shed dead skin cells. Here are some of our top picks:

If you have sensitive skin, the Pyunkang Yul Peeling Gel is a great option. With less than 10 ingredients, this peeling gel is formulated with betaine salicylate, a gentler version of salicylic acid (BHA), to unclog your pores and remove dead skin cells. The unique gel-to-milk formula also helps regenerate the skin and strengthen your skin barrier in the process.

Another great peeling gel you can try is the Sur.Medic Deep Clear Bright Calming Peeling Gel, which contains PHAs, a gentler alternative to AHAs. If you're not ready to commit to a peeling product, you can also opt for the Benton PHA Peeling Toner, which is a gentle exfoliating toner you can use 2-3 times a week to keep your skin smooth and glowing. 

The Secret Key Lemon Sparkling Peeling Gel is another one of our customer favourites for its affordable price (only $15AUD!). This peeling gel contains Vitamin C, lemon extract and carbonated water to buff away impurities and dead skin cells, while hyaluronic acid and plant extracts from centella, aloe and chamomile help moisturise and calm the skin.

Natural beauty enthusiasts, you can get it on the action too! The Beauty of Joseon Apricot Blossom Peeling Gel is a gentle peeling gel made with natural hanbang (traditional Korean herbal medicine) ingredients like natural enzymes from apricots and apple fruit extracts to remove dead skin cells that cause dullness, excess sebum and clogged pores. 

How To Take Care Of Your Skin After Chemical Peeling

Chemical peeling might leave your skin looking a bit red and irritated, especially after a professional session, which is why you need to take special care of your skin afterwards.

As always, SPF is a must because your skin becomes sensitive to the sun after a peel. Applying moisturers both day and night is also crucial, since chemical exfoliants can be drying and damaging to the skin barrier.

Whenever you touch your skin or apply any product, do it very, very gently. Steer clear of other forms of exfoliation, vitamin C, and retinoids for at least a whole day (or until whenever your esthetician gives you the green flag!), and make sure you're using a gentle, non-stripping cleanser on your face that won't leave your skin feeling dry or dehydrated.

Have you tried incorporating these at-home peels to your routine?

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