REVIEW

New Year, New Skin, And A Newfound Love For Chemical Peels

Morning and night, you reach into your bathroom cabinet and slather on a new serum. There’s one for every day of the week, the skin equivalent to those undies embossed with “Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday etc.” Said serums are packed full of potent active ingredients, promising a new and improved you.

Vitamin C for brightening!

Retinol for smoothing fine lines!!!

AHAs, BHAs and enzymes for shedding sad skin!!!

And then, one day, overloaded and exasperated, your face throws its proverbial hands up in the air and breaks out all over in tiny, little red dots.

And by “your face,” I actually mean “my face.” Bear with me while I try to make my point.

Last July, for the first time in my life, I experienced an ongoing plague of breakouts. Within a few weeks, I knew exactly what they were and what had caused them. This wasn’t your usual bout of puss-filled, inflamed acneic cysts or whiteheads. This was a case of skin that had been assaulted with too many products over a prolonged period of time, and I had no one to blame but myself; such are the joys of trialing products for a living and having little-to-no self-control.

Like a cat with nine lives and a laptop (yes, there is such a thing, you’re welcome), an email landed in my inbox from Dermalogica, offering to save me from myself with a set of Pro Power Peels. Little did I know, that in the space of a few months, these in-salon treatments were to completely transform the texture of my skin, as well as my entire approach to skincare (but more on that in a second).

I am aware of the fact that chemical peels are old news. Like, really old news – and no, I’m not talking about that time Samantha turned up to Carrie’s book launch party in 2002 as her plus one, “minus one layer of skin.” The first known application of skin resurfacing emerged in the 19th Century, touted by the Austrian dermatologist Ferdinand Ritter von Hebra, though they only really entered mainstream practice from the 1990s onward. Fast forward to 2012, and more than one million people were getting peels in America.

The beauty of the Pro Power Peel, however, is that they contain three powerful, yet gentle solutions, each completely customisable depending on the condition of your skin. During my first visit to Dermalogica, I tell my skin therapist, Britt, that I’d like to a) banish the red spots, b) brighten my complexion, and c) fade the genetic pigmentation that has begun to surface over the past few years (thanks, mum!).

During my first visit, Brit proves that she knows her shit. Brit is kind, too. She downplays my rashlike breakout with the grace of Princess Diana addressing the court, before going on to prescribe one layer of the Ultra Bright 30% lactic acid solution, followed by targeting the spotty areas with the PowerClear Peel, a masterful blend of acids that act like a chemical vacuum for congested pores. I feel a slight burn and tingle but in the satisfying this-is-working kind of the way. And then, within 10-minutes or so, it’s done!

Over the next few days, there is zero redness and zero flaking. My skin’s a little parched, but the blemishes are drying up nicely…that is until they return in full force. Hello, skin purge. Princess Brit warned that this might happen. That, in her words, “breakouts” can have memories. “More like nightmares,” I think to myself. Though as it turns out, it’s a totally necessary step on the journey to #flawless skin.

Four months, and four peels later, and my skin is not only looking better than it was last year…it’s looking better than it ever has. But the biggest change of all is that it has completely transformed my approach to skincare, and because of it, the results I’m getting.

What’s that? So glad you asked. Instead of trying to renew (read: irritate) my skin with a low percentage of AHAs and BHAs on a nightly basis, I go in strong with the monthly peel. The rest of the month is all about restoring, fortifying and nourishing the skin’s natural protective barrier – on high rotation, there’s Niod Hyaluronic Acid, Dermalogica Calm Water Gel, Murad Brightening Boost Professional Concentrate (designed specifically for accelerating post-peel results), and La Mer Crème de la Mer (our obsession is long-standing to the point of embarrassing). Together, they have helped to heal, protect, deeply hydrate, plump, brighten overall tone and fade pigmentation. They work hard, and I enjoy the perks of now having to wear little-to-no-makeup every day.

So there it is, a #discovery. Not one on a scale as lofty and noble as solving the US border crisis, but it’s something. Something worth screaming from this digital rooftop in the hopes that you too may discover your best skin yet.

Not a sponsored post, just a big fangirl.  Scope out your nearest store to book your Dermalogica Pro Power Peel.