Technical Information

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Cosmetic Chemical Peel - The Misconceptions

You may have the image of a chemical peel as being a medical procedure causing pain, sometimes necessitating an overnight stay, huge bill, and absence from work. There are, however, different types of chemical peels and it is unfortunate that fears from one type of chemical peel becomes a general term to alternative safe peelings.

Dr. Mark Lees, respected cosmetologist and former Chairman of EstheticsAmerica wrote in 1989,

"There are two completely different chemical peeling procedures. One is a surface cosmetic peeling (such as the Skin Culture Peel) using ingredients like resorcinol, salicylic acid, sulphur, lactic acid and occasionally small amounts of phenol. This treatment is a beauty process designed to help minimise surface lines, even skin tone, reduce oiliness, and generally improve the surface appearance of the face.

The second is a much deeper process using large percentages (up to 40%) of phenol or other acids. These medical or surgical peelings are designed to reduce or eliminate deep wrinkles and are much stronger than a surface cosmetic peeling."

Many cosmetics such as cold creams and cleansing formulas contain a low percentage of phenol. Chloroseptic mouthwash has 1.4% and Camphophenique Cold Sore Gel has 4.7% phenol. Skin Culture's Peeling Treatments contain less than 2% by volume.

Skin Culture's active principle ingredients are salicylic acid, resorcinol and a small percentage of phenol (less than 2% by volume) as opposed to the medical peelings, which are predominantly phenol. Salicylic acid, resorcinol, and phenol cause the skin to exfoliate. The antiseptic, germicidal and healing properties of sulphur, sodium benzoic are used in the formula with oils of thyme, eucalyptus, wintergreen and cade. These oils have long been recognised in natural healing science as effective holistic healing agents for many skin problems.

Skin Culture's Cosmetic Peel is continuing to escalate in popularity and demand world-wide despite of the misconceptions generated by the medical chemical peelings. Originally formulated in 1937 as a safe treatment for acne, it has proven to significantly improve large pores, oily, dry blotchy skin, uneven skin tone, age lines, blackheads and under-eye shadows. The treatment will not penetrate below the epidermis so does not cause breaking or blistering of the skin.

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Biostimulins - The healthiest cells your body can produce

The Skin Culture Cosmetic Peel was originated and developed in 1937 by a New York Doctor and pharmacist and has been used by tens of thousands of men and women with excellent, encouraging results.

One of the major benefits of the Skin Culture Cosmetic Peel is that it makes the skin produce BIOSTIMULINS, a substance that helps the cells survive. In the 1930's, Vladimir Filatov, a member of the Academy of Medicine in the USSR and Director of the Institute of Ophthalmology in the Ukraine, discovered that living cells, when subjected to great stress would struggle for life by producing Biostimulins. The shock caused to the skin by the cosmetic peeling induces the skin to fight back by producing these Biostimulins. Think of these cells as the healthiest cells your body can produce. Now think of these cells moving forward from deep in the skin toward the surface. As cells move forward, collagen fibres are strengthened excessive oiliness is normalised, follicles that have been blocked by cellular build up are uncovered, rough textured skin will look smoother and shallow lines are softened. The skin will feel tight and acne infection deep in the skin will race forward to the surface because it cannot live in an area that has been flooded with Biostimulins.

The following is a good example of how Biostimulins work. When a person has an operation such as the removal of the appendix, the stitches are usually removed within 2 to 4 days, the incision already beginning to heal. However, a scab on the knee will take 3 to 4 weeks to heal. Why? The operation is a shock to the body, whereas the scab on the knee is not. Biostimulins are manufactured in the area of trauma, which speeds up healing. The scab on the knee is not a trauma or emergency to the body so no Biostimulins are manufactured and the healing process is slow.

(Source: Dr. Joel Gerson - Milady's Standard Textbook for Professional Estheticians)

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Micro-dermabrasion versus Cosmetic Chemical Peel


Micro-Dermabrasion is a new term that is used to describe machines that work on the same principles as dermabrasion machines but only remove surface dead skin. The correct description of these treatments should be epidermabrasion or micro-epidermabrasion as they in fact only remove a very small percentage of the epidermis. The process often involves a course of treatments (e.g. 8 to 10) over a corresponding number of weeks.

Micro-dermabrasion machines work by pumping minute beads onto the surface of the skin. It is often likened to sandblasting the face. You may have to do at least 10 treatments to get same results to a Peel 4000 treatment. However, you will only have to wait six days to see the results of the Skin Culture Peel and not ten weeks.

Micro-dermabrasion machines have only been around for the last five years or so compared to the sixty year track record of the Skin Culture Peel.


The Skin Culture peel will only ever penetrate the epidermis (outer) layer of skin. It will never penetrate down into the dermis (bottom) layer of skin. Dermabrasion is a medical (cosmetic surgery) technique that consists of sanding the skin with a rotating wire or steel brush. Dermabrasion removes the entire epidermis and part of the dermis. A cosmetic surgeon should only ever carry out this treatment.

The Skin Culture peel is often used to even out the skin discoloration caused by dermabrasion.

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Contra-indications to Cosmetic Chemical Peel

Developed in 1937 the Skin Culture Peel has been used by tens of thousands of women and men and is registered with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Very rarely will a client have an allergic reaction to the Skin Culture Peel. The symptoms may include itching, swelling, redness, and stinging lasting for a few days. You should not have a chemical peel if:

  • You are pregnant or lactating
  • You are using Accutane or other dermatological drugs
  • You are using Retin-A, which should be discontinued about 30 days before peeling is administered.
  • You have extremely thin or translucent skin.
  • You have a history of fever blisters or herpes simplex which can be stimulated by a chemical peel.
  • You have a history of medical problems. (e.g. eczema, seborrhea, psoriasis, bacterial skin infections and extremely sensitive or hyper-allergic skin).

If you pull off skin that is not ready, blotchy hyper-pigmentation can occur. Normally this fades within a few weeks as long as the skin is protected with a sunscreen.

The Skin Culture Peel will:

  • Improve the skin's texture
  • Even the colouring
  • Help to remove hyper-pigmentation
  • Improve fine lines and rough textures
  • Help repair sun damaged skin
  • Help treat acne-prone skin

The Skin Culture Peel will not:

  • Remove deep wrinkles
  • Remove pitted scarring or acne pocks
  • Cause a lifting effect on the skin

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Face Lift and Cosmetic Chemical Peel

The cosmetic skin will not take the place of a face lift. However, it should be noted that face-lifts do nothing for the appearance of the skin. The skin is the determining factor if you wish to achieve a younger look. If you are considering a face-lift we recommend you do a face peel first.

Clients who have sun damage, hyper-pigmented skin, or other forms of melasma are the best candidates for the Skin Culture peel. However, most adults can benefit from peelings because most adults do have some form of fine wrinkling, blemishes or hyper-pigmentation. An ideal candidate for a cosmetic chemical peel treatment is one who is looking for improvement rather than perfection. No existing peeling will alter facial structure or make a person unlike himself or herself.

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Skin Physiology


Smallest unit of skin, made up of protoplasm - a jelly-like living matter of water, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, granules, crystals and other matter. Groups of similar cells form tissue. Cells are responsible for reproduction and metabolism (the process through which food assimilates into the cells and is transformed into energy and nutrients). When a cell reaches maturity, it reproduces itself.

Structure of the Skin

The skin is divided into three layers. The outer layer is the epidermis: the part we see and touch. It is made of sheets of flattened cells that are either dead or dying because newly formed cells push the older cells upwards to the surface where they change shape, die and are shed. The Skin Culture Peelaway treatment will never penetrate deeper than the epidermis - one of the reasons wht we can guarantee the 100% safety of the treatment.

The middle layer is the dermis: which contains hair follicles, oil and sweat glands, nerve endings and blood vessels. It also contains collagen and elastin which support the skin and give it suppleness and elasticity. With age these gradually deteriorate, causing the skin to sag and wrinkle. The dermis is seven times thicker than the epidermis.

The innermost layer of the skin is the hypodermis. This contains fat cells, veins and muscles. It acts as a cushion on which the skin moves.

Characteristics of the Skin

Skin pigmentation varies and is determined by racial genetics. All skin contains Melanin, which tans the skin and protects it from over-exposure to the sun radiation. Ruddy skin is not a colour, but a result of capillaries close to the skin. Pale skin is a result of capillaries being far below the skin surface. Skin texture varies in thickness - generally, a man's skin is thicker than a woman's. Elasticity allows the body to stretch and bend, moving freely without tearing. The network of collagen and elastin fibres found in the dermis gives the skin flexibility. The skin controls the body's temperature through the secretion of sweat. Skin is a sensory organ with which we touch and feel. The skin is water water-resistant.

Skin Chemistry

Skin is made up of about 70% water, 25% protein, 3% fatty acids and minerals. The term pH stands for "potential in hydrogen" and measures the relationship between acidity and quantity of free hydrogen ions. pH is measured on a scale of 1 to 14. pH readings of 1 through 7 are acid. Readings from 7 through 14 are alkaline. Normal pH is between 5.5 and 6.5. Dry skin has a pH of about 4.5. Oily skin is normally at a 6.5 pH. Skin acidity helps maintain water in deep layers of the skin tissue.