chemical peel

For the price of a red wine (and only a glass at that) and the promise of anonymity, a smooth-skinned close friend spilled the beans on her peeling treatments. It's worth careful reading of the following synopsis of our 'interview' because (a) she looks great - that is to say, virtually wrinkle-less - at 52 and (b) after each treatment she's back at her desk within the hour.

It probably helped that she started at the age of 38. The motivation was to smooth out skin tone that had suffered sun damage. Her dermatologist, Albert Lefkovits, is worth a quick parenthesis because she claims he is in his 70s. Since he was her grandmother's(!) dermo, I reckon that makes him about 105 and, consequently, an impressive testament to his own treatments. Anyway, she started out with a gentle AHA (glycolic) peel and repeated the procedure three times a year for about 10 years.

As she puts it, that was just the start and about six or seven years ago she upgraded to the Parisian Peel. Highly plausible in practice, this is a three-step process that combines two relatively gentle treatments to create one fairly powerful one. The beauty of this approach is that the results are pretty good without you having to spend a week or so with your head in a bucket of ice.

Step 1 is the glycolic peel (see the post on Oct 23 for a bit more detail). Step 2 is microdermabrasion. There will be more on this in a coming post, but briefly: microdermabrasion is a deep exfoliation using (increasingly these days) a diamond-tipped wand that abrades the skin and sucks away the dead cells. Step 3 is the application of a vitamin C based serum that is applied with a heated wand to aid recovery. My friend was a bit sheepish when she got to part about the heated wand, but the real point is that she insists she is not even a teensy bit red at the end of the process.

My friend was a veritable vine of good information and tips. There will be more to come on her age-defying dermatologist, daily skincare regime based on Albert's own range called Alaur, and a charcoal cleanser from Japan. A glass of wine very well spent.