PHA, the Estheticians’ Choice when Selecting the Perfect Treatment for Sensitive and Troubled Skin
Peeling treatments accelerates and induces healthy skin through the process of regeneration, and PHA peeling treatments in particular also has added moisture boosting elements that works perfectly well, even on the most sensitive skin.
Even apart from the obvious benefit of exfoliation, peeling treatments are perfectly suitable for anyone looking to improve their skin, and their concerns can range anywhere from dryness, enlarged pores, acne to overall tone and brightness. It really wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that peeling treatments are one of the foundational elements to esthetic therapy.
Unlike some physical peels where the strength of it completely depends on how hard or gentles the external force that applies the peel is, hydroxy acid, or HAS, is a type of chemical peel that is very easy to control the strength of simply by controlling the concentration of the actual chemical. This allows the chemicals to be used in various formulas, which is one of the reasons why it is the most beloved ingredients between estheticians. However as it is still a type of chemical, it should always be used with caution as the absorption rate of the acid depends on the chemical type and size, and even the slightest change in concentration may affect sensitive skin drastically.
In the process of the skin healing and regenerating after a peeling treatment, it is completely normal for the skin to be more sensitive and experience a burning or tingling sensation, especially because the healing process also often includes a sudden loss of moisture within the skin. However PHA peel enables even the most sensitive skin to safely go through the treatments without having to worry about these side effects.
PHA is a type of chemical peel that is a new and improved version of AHA and BHA peels, addressing and fixing the problem with harshness and moisture-stripping qualities. Peeling using PHA minimizes any damage that might occur and demonstrates excellent moisturizing and anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidizing qualities as well as providing sun protection, which makes it a great choice for people with even the most sensitive skin.
PHA can also be paired with topical acne treatments such as tretinoin and azelaic acid, and is a great addition to a routine that consists of vitamin A derivatives that are sensitive to light and sun exposure such as tretinoin and retinol.
Types of PHA
PHA is an ingredient that consists of multiple hydroxy groups, which is why it has similar qualities as AHA. Some examples of different types of PHA includes lactobionic acid, gluconolactone and maltobionic acid. Lactobionic acid an ingredient that is created through the oxidization process of lactose, and it is great at minimizing the appearance of fine lines, improve skin flexibility, while being much better at moisture retention compared to AHA. It also helps achieve smoother skin texture and have a plumping effect that gives off bounciness.
Gluconolactone is a fusion of monosaccharide galactose, a naturally produced elements in the body, with gluconic acid. Compared to single-structure acids, it is a lot more effective in supplying moisture to the skin, exfoliating and also had anti-aging qualities. It also has a bright, refreshing scent which is why it is often used as a natural additive for scents in many skincare and makeup items.
Maltobionic acid typically derives from plants, and it has a very powerful anti-aging qualities though the suppression of lipid-peroxidizing that is caused by UV exposure. Studies have found that it is also great at controlling the enzyme activities of MMP which breaks down protein and collagen, as well as MSH production that stimulates and increases melanin cells, which could eventually lead to hyperpigmentation.
The benefits of PHA, an all-purpose peel that helps repair and regenerate troubled skin.
PHA also supplies elasticity to the skin by suppressing MMP enzymes, an element that decomposes collagen, while accelerating the bonding process between the collagen and elastin cells that increases the density of the dermal layer and relaxes fine lines.
PHA Skincare Level Up Guide
Skincare Routine Using PHA
PHA is often used in products that stays on the surface of the skin for an extended period of time so that it could work itself in between the corneous cell layer and the skin surface. These products may include exfoliating liquids such as toners, but it is more effecting in the form of gels or face masks.
PHA is a highly effective peeling agent, however it is an ingredient that is gentle enough to be used as skincare. It is a great boosting element that can be used before high potency ampoules and serums. Because it is such a gentle, hypoallergenic ingredient, PHA is normally used 3-4 times a week, however the the frequency should be adjusted to each individual as always.
Following up every peeling treatment with products containing moisturizing benefits such as ceramide, hyaluronic acid, peptide or amino acid to help the skin recover its barriers. There have been reports of ceramide being the most effective aftercare product after a peeling treatment.
Compatibility with Active Ingredients
Retinol is an ingredient that accelerates the skin turnover period, and when used with ingredients such as AHA or BHA, another type of peeling agent, would result in over exfoliation causing extremely stimulated and dries out skin. However PHA is much less harsh and attracts moisture, and diffuses the oxidizing or aging process caused by UV rays which it why it would pair well even with ingredients that are sensitive to sun exposure such as retinol or vitamin C. However as always, higher percentage of active ingredients would mean increased stimulation to the skin which is why it should always be used with discretion.
Things to Watch Out For
Although PHA is an improved ingredient compared to other peeling ingredients such as AHA and BHA, it should always be remembered that it is still a type of acid. Always remember to do a patch test before proceeding to use PHA on the face and adjust the intensity of the ingredient. Adding on, because PHA is a hydrophilic acid, it is more effective on dry, sensitive skin rather than oily, acne-prone skin. If being used with AHA or BHA, make sure to limit the frequency to once a week in order to not cause too much strain the skin.