How to Get Rid of Blackheads Without Damaging Your Skin
A blackhead is a clump of oil and dirt mixed together in a pore. If you don't take care of your pores, eventually the dirt and oil will accumulate. Worse, dirty pores can also mean reduced skin elasticity in the future. Learn more...
Those tiny dots are a sign you need to treat your skin ASAP. It's called a blackhead and referred to as open comedones. A blackhead is a clump of oil and dirt mixed together in a pore. If you don't take care of your pores, eventually the dirt and oil will accumulate. Worse, dirty pores can also mean reduced skin elasticity in the future. A pore is like a rubber band - the more you stretch it out, the less elasticity it has. Once those pores are stretched out to a certain degree, they typically don't shrink to shrink back to their original size.
More bad news - unfortunately those with combination or very oily skin types are most prone to blackheads on the nose because the sebaceous glands produce an abundance of oils in the pores on the skin of the nose. Here are 15 helpful tips and DIY homemade masks to prevent and help get rid of blackheads on your nose, chin, and forehead.
1. Cleanse your face morning and night
While this may seem like common sense cleansing is vital to help prevent dirt and oil from accumulating in your pores. Wash your face in the morning with Pure Fiji's Purifying Cleanser to get rid of any bacteria that might have transferred to your skin from your pillowcase. Cleansing at night is even more important to get rid of the makeup, pollution, and dirt that coats skin throughout the day.
2. Wash off that sweat after your workout
Excess sweat can cause blackheads, so it's important to remove all dirt, sweat, and oil after a workout to avoid clogging your pores even more and forming additional blackheads
3. Try a strip
Pore strips are like a ""Band-Aid Extractor"". It's an adhesive that pulls away those tiny blackheads. However, they will only work for newer blackheads, and not ones that have been there for several weeks or months.
4. Use oil-free sunscreen
Sunscreens can feel uncomfortable if you have oily or combination skin. That sticky feeling can be annoying but you'll be more annoyed if you don't protect your skin from harmful UV rays. We recommend that you choose oil-free formulations that won't weigh down the skin or clog your pores.
5. Exfoliate twice a week
Using an exfoliant on a regular basis is one of the ways you can prevent clogging your pores. If you're a beginner we recommend you start using a washcloth. For those that are intermediate an exfoliator with papaya and pineapple extracts will gently polish skin and ease away impurities. And for those advanced users delicately try a glycolic peel.
Plan to exfoliate twice a week, but you can go up to three times a week if you have oily skin (except if your skin is sensitive) that is prone to blackheads. Always moisturize after every exfoliating session. If you think you should skip moisturizing your face don't! If your skin is really dry, your oil production overcompensates, creating more oil and more blackheads.
6. Use a clay mask 1-2 times a week
If your skin produces lots of oil, you can put the clay mask on your nose or T-zone to specifically target blackheads in that area. A clay mask will help pull out all the dirt from your skin. You can apply for 15 minutes and rinse, or you can use it as a spot treatment overnight. Charcoal masks are another alternative to clay. Here are three DIY Clay Masks for Blackheads you can try!
DIY Bentonite Face Mask
- 3 tablespoons bentonite clay
- Lavender oil (optional)
- Mix all the ingredients in a bowl until they form a smooth paste that is neither too thick nor too runny.
- Apply it all over your face.
- Leave it on for 20 minutes or until it dries up completely.
- Dip a soft cotton cloth in water and use it to remove the mask.
Bentonite clay gets rid of toxins and unclogs your pores, thus removing blackheads. It also reduces the appearance of acne scars and combats redness and inflammation.
DIY Blackhead-busting Clay Mask
- 1 tbsp clay
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar (or pure rose water)
- Combine the ingredients into a bowl.
- Stir until you have a paste without lumps in it.
- Spread over your whole clean face, or just the areas where you have blackheads.
- Let it sit on your face for 15-20 minutes.
- Take a warm, wet washcloth and press it to the mask for a few seconds, and then slowly and gently wipe off.
- Wash off any excess clay and finish off with your toner, serum, and moisturizer.
DIY Charcoal Face Mask
- 1 teaspoon bentonite clay
- 1 capsule activated charcoal, powder removed
- 1 teaspoon organic raw apple cider vinegar
- 3 drops tea tree oil
- In a small glass bowl mix clay, charcoal powder, apple cider vinegar and tea tree oil.
- If the mixture is too dry, add a few drops of water at a time until desired consistency is reached.
- Apply mask to clean face, spreading in an even layer.
- Wash hands and rinse out glass bowl.
- Leave mask on for 10 minutes.
- Rinse mask off with warm water and a washcloth.
- Finish off with your toner, serum, and moisturizer.
7. Get extractions done professionally
There are plenty of good reasons to visit your esthetician for your regular facials! They use a small tool during a facial to squeeze out the dirt from the pores without breaking the skin (or enlarging the pore). The lesson? Leave the squeezing to your esthetician.
8. Avoid self-tanners
While a self-tanner may make you look and feel great the downside is they actually make your blackheads look darker and the pores more noticeable because the sugar component of the tanners is more attracted to keratinized skin, and blackheads are little clumps of dead skin and oil in a pore.
9. Avoid dimethicone
Dimethicone (also known as polydimethylsiloxane or PDMS) is a type of silicone commonly found in plenty of beauty products like; lotions, primers, and foundations. This ingredient is FDA approved but overusing it will result in clogged pores and exacerbate the appearance of acne and blackheads.
10. Use prescription retinol
Prescription retinoid products typically take four to five weeks to start working properly. Retinoids come in different strengths so you'll want to start your treatment every other day, and then work your way up. You'll also notice that it can be very drying and can cause redness. Apply at night on a cleansed face just before you go to bed. Retinols are typically applied over your moisturizer. If you're using it as a spot treatment, dab toner over the cleansed blackhead and apply the retinol with a cotton swab. Avoid Retinoids if you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant.
As you can see there are plenty of ways to get rid of your blackheads. If your blackheads aren't improving then consider seeking advice from a qualified dermatologist.