How I Healed My Acne (For Good!) with Chemical Peels

*Disclaimer: This post was really hard for me to write. In a world of “perfect” Instagram stars/girls, I felt vulnerable sharing my own imperfections (believe me, I have MANY!) However, I realize that sharing my own struggles and vulnerabilities can help so many of you out there that may be struggling, too!*

I have had acne-prone, oily, hormonal skin for my entire life. Not the controllable, “once every blue moon” type of acne. The really painful, annoying, kind.

Growing up, I tried almost everything on the market. If you can name a brand, I bet you I’ve already tried their 3-step system. I invested so much time and money into trying to “fix” my skin. I visited dermatologists for years, tried every topical solution they gave me, and even started ingesting oral pills to help my skin.

Nothing worked.

I would sometimes see a slight improvement in my skin after trying something new – but nothing ever lasted. It was exhausting to ride a roller coaster of false hope. I dreamed of the day that I could not wear makeup and actually feel comfortable.

One thing I had never tried before (but had heard of) were chemical peels. I reached out to Lapiel Laser Center here in Chicago to learn more about chemical peels and see if they could possibly help my skin.

This post is going to be alllllll about my experience working with Lapiel Laser Center to transform my skin. It’s gonna be packed with tons of details, pictures, and even a Q+A session with Julie, the esthetician that worked on my skin over the past few months.

Make sure you are following Lapiel Laser on Facebook and Instagram, and check out their website here.

Chemical Peels

When I first went in to ask about chemical peels and if they were right for my broken-out, acne-prone skin, Julie hopped right on board. She explained to me how chemical peels work to get down into the skin and oxygenate the skin. The salicylic acid in chemical peels is at a higher percentage than typical over-the-counter products and is able to target breakouts right away.

What I love about Lapiel Laser Center is that when you first start going, they really take the time to listen to your skin concerns. They explain what they would recommend and WHY, so you’re constantly in the loop. I asked Julie to explain chemical peels in more detail for my readers, and this is what she said:

“A Chemical Peel is basically a way of exfoliating the skin using unique acid blends to target specific skin concerns. Most people assume that they will end up looking like Samantha from Sex & The City, but the reality is that Chemical Peels simply accelerate cell turnover in the skin and reveal more radiant skin. We use the Glytone family of peels, which apart from being super effective at dealing with everything from acne to sun damage, are also leading the pack when it comes to Chemical Peels with no downtime!

When you first came in you were looking to target breakouts and the scarring that can sometimes happen when dealing with acne. We chose the Salicylic Acid Peel which is designed to help with active breakouts and decrease excess sebum (oil on the skin) all while improving tone & texture and unclogging pores.”

Julie gave me a chemical peel once every 2 weeks for a couple months. Every time I got another chemical peel, I noticed that I had fewer breakouts popping up. The pictures below are what my skin looked like BEFORE  I ever got a chemical peel at Lapiel Laser.

chemical peels

What goes on during a chemical peel?

A lot of people (including me, 3 months ago) think that chemical peels are something to be scared of. Breaking news: they aren’t scary at all! And they are a godsend.

I asked Julie to explain to you all why chemical peels work so well. This is what she said:

“Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid that helps exfoliate the skin. Due to its unique chemical makeup, it is ideal for breaking down blackheads, whiteheads and dealing with oily skin. Salicylic Acid can pretty much be found in every single over the counter acne treatment on the market. What make professional treatments, like Chemical Peels, different is the concentration of the acid in treatment which you cannot get at your local drugstore or even places like Sephora.”

chemical peelschemical peels

The pictures below are from an actual appointment of mine, with my girl Julie applying my chemical peel.

chemical peels

chemical peels

And if you’re worried about the shedding/peeling that can happen after a chemical peel, listen to what Julie said:

“[Peeling] afterward is very normal! The amazing thing about Glytone Peels is that actually peel is very minimal. Skin will slowly and subtly slough away in the 3-5 days post peel. You should avoid picking, or aggravating the peeling process at all costs because it can lead to scaring. If you do experience peeling it is usually found on the nose or around the mouth. We recommend staying super hydrated and using a heavy moisturizer or oil to deal with the peeling.”


After getting regular chemical peels and a couple Jessner peels, Julie decided that it was time I should try out a silkpeel.

As you can see from the photo below, almost all of my active breakouts were gone at the time I got a silkpeel. Because of this, Julie and I switched our focus from trying to heal my acne, to healing the hyperpigmentation and acne scars left over.

chemical peels

*This post is part of an in-kind sponsorship with Lapiel Laser Center. All opinions are my own and honest.*