How To Get Rid of Blackheads
We're talking about those pesky little black dots on your skin, that you just can't seem to get rid of. Blackheads can affect all skin types, but especially affect oily skin, and the war on getting rid of them is on!
To get rid of them, we first must understand how they form.
How do blackheads form?
Similar to how a pimple forms, dead skin cells and excess oil from your sebaceous glands clog the skin's pores from the inside forming an acne pimple. For regular pimples and whiteheads, the pore closes which traps the dirt and dead skin cells inside. Here the bacteria have a field day to multiply, thus forming more pimples. What makes a blackhead different from a normal pimple is that the pores remain open even after the pimple forms, which causes oxidation on the top giving it its black colour.
Put simply, it's a pimple that has formed while the surface of the skin's pore remains open, oxidation then changes the colour of the dead skin cells + sebum on the surface, to black. As soon as we see these bumps on our skin the urge to immediately pop them needs no motivation at all. However, popping them can leave serious scarring and can damage your skin after you remove the blackheads. So, find your willpower and stop yourself from popping them. Instead, turn to your skincare products to get rid of blackheads from the inside out.
How to get rid of them?
First, you need to understand your skin type and then what ingredients work best for your targeted issues. As there are many different types of skin, not every product solution will work in the same way for everybody, so the key is to look out for winning ingredients for you, and as a manufacturer - what works best for your target market audience. While your skincare routine remains more or less the same, there are a few steps you need to add to help you.
Cleansing: When creating a product targeted for acne treatment and blackhead removal, turn to Salicylic Acid as it breaks down and easily removes excess oils, dead skin cells, makeup, and environmental dirt. Using a cleanser with this key ingredient twice a day can be something to work towards, but it is not necessary; when introducing a new product to your skin, use it at night for a few weeks first, as some skin types can be sensitive to Salicylic acid.
Exfoliating brushes: Now hear me out, I know that exfoliation can cause acne to get worse, but only if you’re experiencing what we call inflammatory acne (redness and irritation). For blackheads though, using a gentle exfoliator can help remove dead skin cells and can unclog the pores- that's the aim here. This should be the next step in getting rid of blackheads. Remember they can be stubborn little suckers and we’re trying not to leave scars in the process, so using a skin brush is the safest and most cost-effective method you can opt for. That being said, this is not something you need to do every day, especially for sensitive skin types. Use a brush once a week to start and you can even use the brush with your cleansing wash/ gel.
Exfoliation gels: Not all exfoliators need to be huge and rough, as long as there’s a stimulant to remove what doesn’t belong in those pores, your skin will thank you for it, so choose a product that has “beads” that will work with your skin sensitivity and not aggravate it. In this case, size does matter.
Look for products that contain Glycolic acid, salicylic acid and other types of “Alpha hydroxy acids” (AHA’s) and “Beta hydroxy acids” (BHA’s).
Tip: If you have sensitive skin and cannot use an exfoliator on your skin, then you can opt for the exfoliator brush already mentioned as an alternative, as they come in various sizes, prices and sensitivities. This is 100% safe to use with your cleanser.
Masks: We know a mask is great at drawing out excess oil, removing dirt and opening up the pores, leaving the skin feeling fresh, light and above all clean, but for blackheads, this is exactly what you need. Look out for clay masks, especially that contain sulphur, charcoal, and enzymes, as clay is better absorbed in the skin. Because a face mask is a non-invasive, pain-free process, it can be overdone. There is a healthy balance that should be maintained, do not use a mask daily. Once a week is more than enough because after a mask is removed, the ingredients absorbed by the skin are still working, hence sometimes you see better results a day or two after getting a facial done, instead of instantly.
Moisturisers: This is where manufacturers and skincare product users need to pay a little more attention to detail as well. Moisturisers are made to hydrate, get absorbed into the skin and protect it. Some creams do this by having multiple ingredients that perform different functions, whilst some ingredients are absorbed into the skin, others skit on top to protect it. If you’re trying to clear out blackheads, you don’t want something that may trick your skin into believing there’s a pore blockage, because then we’re back to square one. Choose moisturisers that are “Noncomedogenic”- meaning products that will not clog your skin's pores. To do this you must know what's on that label. Also try not to use make-up often, if you need to then go for it, but if you can avoid it, then do so.
Blackheads can tell you a lot about your skin and the products you choose should work with that intel. The key is to select ingredients as a skincare manufacturer that will not irritate, cause redness or inflame the skin.
Understanding how often a product should be used is also imperative to treating blackheads, as the right skincare products used too often can have adverse effects and as manufacturers put together skincare packages that target your market and their needs directly.
Don’t go popping your blackheads, pop a product instead and enjoy good looking skin scar-free well after those suckers have left.
Be blackhead free