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Find the best chemical peel for hyperpigmentation, learn how chemical peels work, discover skincare routines to treat hyperpigmentation, and much more in this article! (Overall, my top recommendation is Platinum Skin Care TCA Peel 13%)
Did you know that chemical peels have been around for literally thousands of years? 😮
Early adopters like Cleopatra and the ancient Egyptians were famous for bathing in sour milk (which contains lactic acid) to cleanse their skin and remove imperfections.
Among their many uses, chemical peels are very effective for treating hyperpigmentation, including melasma, dark spots, and uneven skin tone. 🤗
In addition, regular use can soften wrinkles, smooth fine lines, and correct acne scars as well.
In this post, I've hand-picked the best at home chemical peels for hyperpigmentation, based on peeling agent, active ingredients, customer reviews, price/value, and my personal experience.
I only recommend skincare products that I'd use myself (every product here passes this test), so you can feel confident that you're getting a high-quality chemical peel for your skin. 👍
This certified chemical peel is often used by professionals like dermatologists and estheticians and comes in 4 concentrations:
7% TCA: for eyes and extremely sensitive areas
13% TCA: for beginners and dark skin types (Fitzpatrick IV-VI)
20% TCA: only if you've completed 5 layers of 13% TCA with no results
30% TCA: for body peels, TCA CROSS, or dilution into lower concentrations
In addition, all TCA peels (except the 30%) include "Cool-Action" menthol to soothe stinging and reduce irritation for a more comfortable peel experience. 👍
Personally, I love that Platinum Skin Care shares a ton of information about chemical peels on their website and YouTube channel. Here's Jen, the CEO, explaining TCA peels in more detail:
Recommended Treatment for Hyperpigmentation
If you have mild hyperpigmentation, such as dark spots, brown spots, or post-acne marks, start with a 13% TCA peel (single layer) every 2 weeks for a total of 6-8 treatments.
Over time, you can gradually increase the number of layers to 3 (with 5 minutes in between).
By the end of this treatment plan, you should see visible improvements in hyperpigmentation, smoother skin texture, and brighter skin tone, as well as fewer blemishes and dark spots.
If you have severe hyperpigmentation, however, such as age spots, sun spots, or melasma, you should still complete a beginner TCA peel series (unless you've already completed one), but consider adding a peel enhancer like Platinum Skin Care Luminosity Serum (0.5% Retinol) at the end of each TCA peel to promote further cell turnover and skin regeneration.
Editor's Note: a 6mL Luminosity Serum is available as an add-on with any purchase.
As before, you can (and should) gradually increase the number of layers to 3-5 to remove more damaged skin tissue, including the problematic skin cells with excess melanin pigments that are responsible for post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) and melasma.
Immediately after a chemical peel, it's a good idea to apply a cream, moisturizer, or sheet mask to keep your skin hydrated and help it rebuild its moisture barrier. Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid, panthenol, allantoin, and copper peptides to accelerate the healing process.
In the following days, it's extremely important to wear sunscreen and avoid direct sun exposure as your skin is more sensitive to UV photodamage (which may result in hyperpigmentation!).