Chemical peels in active acne and acne scars

Clin Dermatol. 2017 Mar-Apr;35(2):179-182. doi: 10.1016/j.clindermatol.2016.10.011. Epub 2016 Oct 27.


Chemical peeling is a widely used procedure in the management of acne and acne scars. It causes controlled destruction of a part of or the entire epidermis, with or without the dermis, leading to exfoliation and removal of superficial lesions, followed by regeneration of new epidermal and dermal tissues. The most frequently used peeling agents are salicylic acid, glycolic acid, pyruvic acid, lactic acid, mandelic acid, Jessner solution, trichloroacetic acid, and phenol. The appropriate peel is chosen based on the patient's skin type, acne activity, and type of acne scars. Combination peels minimize side effects. In acne scars, chemical peels may be combined with other procedures to achieve better clinical results. A series of chemical peels can lead to significant improvement over a short period, leading to patient satisfaction and maintenance of clinical results. © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

MeSH terms

  • Acne Vulgaris / therapy*
  • Chemexfoliation / methods*
  • Cicatrix / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Keratolytic Agents / therapeutic use*


  • Keratolytic Agents