It is good to remain on guard and know how to get rid of blackheads. It can really affect your appearance adversely and become a source of embarrassment.
It doesn’t matter how old you are, anyone can have issues of blackheads on their skin, but mostly they occur in adolescent year and teenage. This article covers the following areas regarding blackheads and allows you to eliminate blackheads from your skin:
- What is blackhead
- Causes of blackheads
- Blackheads treatment
- Home remedies of blackheads
What is blackhead?
Blackheads are open pores with large openings that get clogged with excess sebum (an oil produced by sebaceous glands), dead skin and dirt. It is the melanin oxidation that makes it black.
Black heads are usually either yellowish or blackish bumps that are embedded in the pores. They are highly common among pre-menstrual women and teens. The nasty skin blackheads are mostly found on and around the nose, which is why they are really noticeable. This is one big reason you would want to get rid of blackheads. However, They can also be found on the back, arms, chest, shoulders and neck.
Medical practitioners consider blackheads to be the first phase of acne. If you leave it untreated, you might get those nasty acne breakouts. Although there are blackhead medications, but the best way to get rid of blackheads are the natural remedies for blackheads.
Causes of blackheads
The blackhead starts forming when a clog occurs in the hair follicle’s opening. One follicle consists of one hair. As mentioned before sebaceous gland is responsible for the production of oil called sebum which helps in keeping your skin soft. Dead skin and oil together form a bump known as blackheads or a comedian. If your skin actually covers the bump, then that’s called a whitehead. However, there are factors that accelerate the chances of blackhead formation. Here are some of the causes of blackheads:
- Taking birth control pills
- Taking drugs such as androgen or corticosteroids
- Hormonal changes during menstruation, pregnancy and teen years
- Propionic bacterium acnes building up on the skin
- Dead skin cells causing hair follicle irritation.
- Very oily skin also causes blackheads. If you happen to possess oily skin, then wash your face at least 5 times a day to minimize oil production.
Black heads treatment
Here are some of the black head treatments that you can use:
Choose a product with salicylic acid in case you have a sensitive skin. Salicylic acid acts as a blackhead dissolver. You can simply check out the ingredients on the package as it is an over the counter product. Compared to the stronger alternatives, salicylic acid is more gentle to the skin and barely causes peeling or redness. Search for products that particularly contain a combination of salicylic acid and glycolic acid. After a week of usage, you will notice many blackheads removed while others just loosen up.
Use products containing benzoyl peroxide only if your skin is not sensitive and doesn’t dry out. Benzoyl peroxide loosens up the clog and lets it come out of the pore. Although it may be harsh on your skin, but it is the fastest store-bought choice that you have. It is also considered to be more effective that salicylic acid. You may face irritation if you leave on for too long.
Retinoids can be a great treatment for blackheads but people with sensitive skin shouldn’t go for it. However, there are low strength retinoids as well like Olay Regenerist Intensive Repair Treatment which is a decent option.
You can even take medicines like Spironolactone and contraceptive pills which help to minimize the oil production and keep your pores from being clogged. They will help you to successfully get rid of blackheads and keep them from occurring in future. However, these medications are meant for people who suffer from moderate to severe acne rather than just occasional black heads.
This blackhead treatment is a low density, low energy and non-ablative lasers and microsecond lasers such as Aerolase only heat the skin layer under the skin and doesn’t do any damage to the top skin.
Home remedies for blackheads
One thing that should be made clear before you read on is that do not scrub your face too much as it is not an effective method to remove blackheads. Instead, it will make your condition worse as you will excessively dry up your skin which will result in increased production of oil to replace all that you removed excessively. So just use the following remedies 2 to 3 times a week. No matter how tempting it may be, just use these natural remedies for blackheads this much only because your skin is better off that way. Here are some effective home remedies:
1. Baking Soda
What makes baking soda an effective cure for blackheads? It is the antiseptic quality of baking soda that helps to get rid of dirt and debris on skin and remove blackheads.
- Take a glass or a ceramic bowl and combine small amount of water with baking soda to make a paste.
- Apply it on the your face and massage with a light hand.
- Leave it on for about 10 minutes to dry.
- Wash it off with lukewarm water.
- Do this remedy once or twice a week to remove dirt from pores.
Cinnamon is an effective remedy for black head removal and prevention.Due to the antibacterial quality of this aromatic spice, it can be used to make an aromatic face mask.
- Combine two parts honey with one part of cinnamon powder to make a thick paste.
- Cover your blackheads with a thin layer of this paste.
- Leave it over night and wash it off in the morning with a natural cleanser.
- Cinnamon can be used to remove and prevent blackheads.
- Then use a moisturizer.
- For best results, do it every day.
- Combine lemon juice with cinnamon powder.
- You can also add a pinch of turmeric although it’s optional.
- Leave it on the affected area for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Wash it off.
Honey is not just antibacterial, it is also antiseptic. Honey also tightens the skin pores and hydrates them giving a fairer complexion along with being a great remedy for both blackheads and oily skin.
- Take some pure raw honey and heat a tablespoon of it. You can do this easily by keeping the jar of honey in a bowl or pan of hot water.
- Dab this warm honey on your blackheads.
- Let it stay for 10 minutes.
- Clean it using a warm and damp cloth.
- For best results, repeat daily.
Oatmeal is a great soothing agent which helps to calm irritation, soaks excess oil to give you a clear complexion, and remove dead skin cells.
- Take some distilled water and cook oatmeal that is sufficient to cover your blackheads.
- Allow the oat to cool at room temperature before you apply it.
- Let it stay for 10 to 20 minutes till it dries.
- Then wash it off with lukewarm water.
- Repeat once a day daily for few days.
- Combine 3 tablespoons of plain yoghurt, 2 tablespoons of oatmeal and little olive oil and lemon juice.
- Cover your face with the paste.
- Let it stay for a few minutes before you wash it.
5. Lemon Juice
Lemon is not just an acne treatment but also helps in the removal of blackheads. Lemon does not only contain antioxidant qualities, but is also an antiseptic. Lemon is a popular remedy, particularly because it helps in the removal of blackheads on nose and face. Make sure you dilute the lemon as it is acidic in nature and can irritate your skin.
- Dilute some lemon juice.
- Add a pinch of salt.
- Take the help of a cotton piece and use it on your face and nose.
- Natural acid and salt combination helps to dry up the black heads.
- Squeeze half a lemon and add few drops of honey.
- For the purpose of exfoliation, adding sugar can be helpful.
- Rub it on your face with a light hand.
- Wash it off after 15 minutes.
- Do it twice a week
Note: as soon as you feel any kind of irritation because of the lemon, instantly wash your face and use the cream on the affected area.
6. Green Tea
Green tea is highly rich in antioxidants and vitamins, which helps to minimize skin inflammation and cancels out excess oil on acne prone skin.
- Take 8 ounces of water and remove from heat.
- Add two teaspoons of green tea or a tea bag.
- Pour it into a glass and allow it to cool.
- With the help of cotton wool dab it on the blackheads.
- Wash with cool water and moisturize.
Turmeric is not just good for minor burn, but is an effective treatment for blackheads due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities. If you are worried about staining yourself with turmeric, you can opt for Kasturi turmeric
- Combine turmeric powder, milk, and sandalwood to form a paste.
- Cover the affected areas with it.
- Leave it on for 10 minutes before washing your skin.
- Turmeric, which works well for minor burns, can also be used to treat blackheads.
Fenugreek may be a simple remedy, but helps to effectively clear blackheads.
- Combine fenugreek leaves with some water to form a paste.
- Cover the affected site with it.
- Allow it to dry.
- Repeat it every day.
9. Epsom Salt
While Epsom salt is popularly known for relaxing sore muscles, it is also great for treating blackheads. Most of the home remedies for blackheads mentioned here work on the basis of dissolving the dead skin and getting rid of oil but Epsom salt clears out every clogged pore and washes them away.
- Take a little hot water and add few drops of iodine and a teaspoon of Epsom salt.
- Stir well so the salt dissolves properly.
- Let it cool to room temperature.
- Apply it on the blackheads with the help of a cotton ball.
Wondering why cornmeal? It is an abrasive that helps to scrape out all the dirt that is stuck in your pores and cleans it thoroughly.
- Combine powdered cornmeal with little water.
- Steam your face to open your pores.
- Then apply the mixture and massage with a light hand.
- Then wash your face.
So now that you know how to get rid of blackheads, do not leave them untreated. To get best results, remember to use these remedies on a regular basis. Seek the help of a dermatologist in case they don’t work for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
What makes blackheads black?
The pores contain melanin and sebum that reach the surface and get oxidized which is why it looks black or dark brown.
Is it okay to squeeze blackheads out?
It might seem like a very tempting thing to do, but it can seriously damage your skin. Don’t try to squeeze them out as it may not only damage your skin but also leave terrible unpleasant scars. When you squeeze it too hard, the wall of the pore breaks, producing dirt and oil into healthy skin which leaves a scar. Nobody wants that.
Are homemade treatments good for getting rid of blackheads?
They are one of the best treatments for getting rid of blackheads. They neither damage your skin nor have any side effects. Instead, they leave your skin healthy and glowing upon regular usage.
Is washing your face too much to get rid of the oil harmful?
There is nothing wrong with washing your face as it helps to maintain a clean and clear skin. However, overdoing is not a good idea. When you wash your face too much to free it of oil and dirt, to counter that the skin produces even more that results in blackheads and acne. Thoroughly cleaning your skin twice a day is a good idea.