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How Will an Enzyme Peel Help Your Skin?

author image Jean Jenkins
Jean Jenkins has been writing professionally since 1994. She has written medical research materials for the American Parkinson's Association, the Colorado Neurological Institute and the Autism Society of America. Jenkins has specialized in neurology, labor and delivery, high-risk obstetrics and autism spectrum disorders. She holds a Bachelor of Science in nursing from the University of Colorado.
How Will an Enzyme Peel Help Your Skin?
An enzyme peel can rejuvenate your skin. Photo Credit: hammett79/iStock/Getty Images

What Are Enzymes?

Enzymes are organic substances that sustain life; proteins that act as catalysts, or accelerators, during chemical reactions happening continually throughout the body. Some reactions need to happen quickly, such as the enzymes involved in breaking down big protein or fat molecules into smaller ones during digestion. The enzyme processes working in your skin are not quite as fast as in the gut, but they react at an impressive rate when you realize what their work encompasses. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, you have 19,000,000 skin cells per square inch covering 20 square feet of skin across your body, if you are an average adult. Enzymes from natural sources, such as fruits, working with the enzymes in and on your skin, can come together in a dramatic dance to revitalize your skin and return a youthful glow and feel to your face, neck or anywhere you want to improve texture or appearance.

Skin 101

Skin is made up of two layers: the outermost portion is the epidermis, and the lower, deeper portion is called the dermis. Each of these layers have many layers of tissue within them. The epidermis takes the beating everyday, facing sun, pollution, sweating, dryness and makeup. Fortunately, both layers are working all the time to make new skin cell layers that are continually rising up to the surface of the skin. These new cells replace older, dead skin cells that are hanging out on the surface, dulling your skin’s appearance. Being born with good skin is a myth, says Dr. Arielle N.B. Kauvar, clinical associate professor of dermatology at New York University School of Medicine. “Experts believe that genetics account for only 20 percent of natural aging, with 80 percent thought to be from accumulated sun exposure.” Sun damage is responsible for advanced wrinkling, pigmentation differences or color variances, blotchy and rough patches and freckles that don’t look like angel kisses anymore, but like big age spots. Aging skin also looses collagen, which is made of protein fibers that give your skin its firmness and elasticity. As we age, loss of collagen means weaker, thinner skin.

Advantages of Enzyme Peels

Enzyme peels accelerate the process of skin cell replacement by accelerating the chemical reactions necessary to bring forth newer, plumper cells and to rid the skin of the older, dead cells. You have probably come to know the term exfoliate, due to scrubs and loofahs. Enzyme peels can accomplish exfoliation much faster. Peels can loosen and remove dead skin cells, promote younger cells, diminish scars, stretch marks, age spots, fine lines and discoloration. Enzymes can also penetrate the skin to help cleanse pores and improve skin tone and texture. Natural enzyme peels are gaining in popularity because they are safe for all skin types, do not wound the skin--as a harsher chemical peel would--they’re inexpensive, and they don’t cause profound redness, causing you to hide out at home for days. Popular ingredients for enzyme peels include papaya, pineapple, pomegranate and blueberries. An added bonus to this procedure is while you are waiting for the enzymes to soften and brighten your skin, you can have an antioxidant fruit smoothie to cleanse and nourish your insides as well.

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