Removing Scars: Acid Peels

Today, there are numerous treatment options available for removing scars. Each treatment can be effective for a specific type of scar. Among these, acne scars can be effectively removed by acid peel treatment. Effectiveness of these peels in treating acne and acne scars has increased in popularity among people who need a treatment for scar removal.

What Are Acid Peels?

Acid peels are also termed as chemical peels, and basically, all chemical peels contain one or a combination of acids (as the name suggests) that literally peel off the top layer of the skin, thereby giving place for new skin to get exposed. These peels are excellent for removing superficial scars and cannot be used for deep seated scars. They can work on scars on the chest, body, back, neck and face regions. So, they are generally used for eliminating wrinkles, acne scars, uneven pigmentation and blemishes.

Types of Acid Peels

Acid peels come in lots of variety depending on the type and strength of the acids used in them. There are light, medium and deep acid peels for treating various degrees of skin problems and scars.

  • AHA - A light or mild chemical peel is generally made of alphahydroxy acid (AHA) or betahydroxy acid. It means that they have acids like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, lactic acid or fruit acid. This peel is recommended for removing the dryness of skin, acne scars and pigmentation.
  • TCA - Medium chemical peels use trichloroacetic acids (TCA) in order to treat superficial blemishes, wrinkles and pigmentation problems.
  • Phenol – Deep peels make use of phenol acid and thus happen to be the strongest of  acid peels. As it is stronger in action, more time is required for healing.

In order to remove acne scars and other mild scars, a diluted form of AHA can be mixed with daily face or body washes so that it can be used in your daily routine.


Acid peels are becoming popular as they are affordable and at the same time effective in controlling or erasing the scars. It can be done as an outpatient procedure, thus eliminating the need for a hospital stay. The side effects and recovery time associated with this treatment is also less when compared to those of other scar removal treatments.


Mild side effects like stinging, redness, itching and crusting will be noticed in any type of acid peel. Such side effects subside in due course of time; however, side effects with the deep acid peels may get aggravated. This may lead to inflammation and infection of the wounds, severe cracking of skin, and increased sensitivity to sunlight and flaking, thereby leading to more scarring. Acid peels can cause complications when performed on skin with active acne or other inflammations.

It is of utmost important to consult your cosmetologist or dermatologist before going for chemical peels. Only a qualified professional can analyze factors like skin type, tone, scar type and also find the suitability of chemical peel for you.

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