TCA Touch™ and MD Line to support the existing specialist line from pHformula here in the UK. This exciting development follows the same philosophy of pHformula where the focus is on innovative products using the technology of regenerative medicine.
This results-driven and proven line further equip the advanced skin specialists and Aesthetic practitioners with the safest form of Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) skin treatment to date. This addition will become part of the aesthetician’s staple must-haves for skin treatment and Aspire are here to explain the vital differences between pHformula MD Line and TCA TOUCH™, and highlight the potentially harmful effects of the more conventional approach to using TCA for chemical peeling, which is widely used in the industry at present.
What is TCA?
Although we all know that chemical peels using natural acids are an extremely popular method of tackling skin disorders for a number of years now with good and rewarding results, there is evidence of chemical use on the skin dating back to the Egyptians. Cleopatra is famous for bathing in asses milk which we all know is Lactic acid, a safe and effective Alpha Hydroxy acid (AHA) which gently breaks down the “glue” which binds the top skin cells together causing exfoliation reducing fine lines and wrinkles and improving skin texture and tone.
Considerably more advanced, the modern day chemical peeling has evolved to a combination of various natural chemical acids that are aimed to treat specific skin disorders. TCA is a more aggressive form of chemical acid that works by ‘burning off’ the top layers of the skin. The depth of penetration depends on the concentration of the acid. TCA up to about 35% is classed as a superficial peel, with percentages above this as a medium depth peel. It promotes rapid dermal collagen remodelling, as the skin is stimulated to repair the damage caused. TCA is much more powerful than most acids used in chemical peels, which although helps it work so wonderfully, is not without its dangers.
The Dangers of TCA
TCA is highly effective giving excellent results in only a few in-clinic treatments when used by skilled and qualified specialists who know to manage the application the acid. The percentage of TCA used in the treatment determines the strength of the peel. The risks and complications increase with higher percentages of TCA. It is strongly advised that percentages above 30% should not be used on darker skin. As TCA is an uncontrollable acid with the risk of uneven penetration of the acid even in experienced hands the risks of complications are possible leading to life-long situations such as scarring and pigmentation which can be difficult if not impossible to remedy easily.
However, a quick Google search shows it is widely available online and users who have no professional experience are starting to treat themselves with highly concentrated solutions. In inexperienced hands, the complications can be severe enough to cause third-degree burns requiring a visit to the hospital. The misconception that stronger concentrations are necessary to solve the skin disorder, leads to users treating their skin with percentages of concentration dangerously as high as 50%, as shown below on an acne patient who treated himself at home.
Source: www.sciencedirect.com: Hannah Liu, Rashid. M, Amor Khachemoune
The outcome of results was recorded by a clinic professional:
There was intense hyperpigmentation of the skin with an almost ecchymotic color, and sharp lines of demarcation. The skin was non-tender and no hyperkeratosis or peeling was noted. A biopsy was performed of skin from an involved area on the forehead near the hairline- sciencedirect.com
As shown, focal dermal pigment incontinence emerged in the patient’s skin. It goes without saying that a number of professionals labelling lower percentage TCA peels as just ‘superficial’ peeling, is giving users the impression that they must apply a high percentage to obtain quicker and more noticeable results they are after. pHformula’s TCA TOUCH™ line proves that this does not have to be the case.
Why is pHformula MD TCA different?
The TCA TOUCH™ in the MD line is at a much safer concentration of 30% and still delivers incredible results. It is a non-ablative peeling system meaning it doesn’t burn the top layers of the skin. The chemical formulation has been transformed by dividing the molecules into Dichloroacetic acid and Monochloroacetic acid. This combination allows the formula to keep the maximum chloro molecules but combined with different pKa, therefore is less aggressive for the skin. It is also enriched with Arbutin for its skin lightening properties and Magnesium Sulfate as an anti-inflammatory effect. This reduces the downtime, pain and risks associated with the classic TCA treatment procedures. Unlike other TCA treatments, this makes the procedure suitable for all skin types and skin disorders.
Advanced skin specialist Emma Bennett tried out TCA Touch™ herself, to showcase the amazing results and little downtime the procedure exhibits.
I had very very mild skin flaking (no one could see it apart from me) it only lasted about 2 days. By day three my skin was glowing! Very slightly tight around chin & neck. The treatment delivered little downtime and skin was left soft and healthy.
This minute amount of downtime from a TCA TOUCH™ treatment truly is remarkable for the complex that allows the excellent standard of results across skin disorders. As TCA is an uncontrollable and unpredictable acid to use at times, it is very exciting news for the skin aesthetics industry that there exists a safe, controlled version of TCA that gains the excellent results from trichloroacetic acid without the risk of harm and permanent skin damage.