Not all of us are able to get facials right now, but are still struggling with skin problems like blackheads. Removing blackheads at home isn’t as hard as it sounds. There are plenty of tools, masks, and other techniques you can use at home to make sure your skin is as clear as ever, quarantine or not.
What are blackheads?
To get rid of blackheads, it helps to know what they are. Technically, it’s not a blackhead – it’s called an open comedone. These annoying little guys are an oxidized blend of dead skin cells and oil. When exposed to air, this mix oxidizes, which makes them turn black.
Get squeaky clean
Always cleanse first – but what you’re cleansing with can have a serious effect on blackheads, surprisingly. Use a face wash that contains salicylic acid to help slough off those dead skin cells and prevent pores from getting clogged. You can also use a face mask with salicylic acid to work on acne.
Remember to exfoliate
To remove blackheads effectively, you always need to exfoliate. You can do this with two different kinds of glycolic acids: AHAs, or alpha hydroxy acids and BHAS, or beta hydroxy acids. You can even apply this with a skin brush, an electric-based system like Clarisonic offers, or the popular Forea brush. You can even take it a further step and get a chemical peel treatment, which removes the top layer of skin, but is more often used for anti-aging benefits.
Use a face mask
There are tons of different masks that you can use to get remove pimples and cleanse pores. There’s even a face mask for blackheads specifically. Here are the different masks that we suggest integrating into your routine to say goodbye to those blackheads.
Pore cleansing masks
With clogged pores come blackheads, so why not invest in some face masks that directly work on cleaning out those icky pores? When pores are clogged or ingested, they can look enlarged and can lead to hyperpigmentation and pimples. Whether you’re looking for a face mask to remove pimples or a pore-cleansing mask, there are different ingredients to look out for.
This blackhead removal mask works best on oily skin. Clay formula grab onto oil, dirt and other gross stuff under your skin. Try to choose a face mask that contains sulfur. Sulfur can help to clear clogged pores and break down dead skin cells, which is essentially what blackheads are made of. You might be wondering: does this face mask remove pimples? The short answer is yes. It dries out the impurities to draw them out, and since acne thrives in moisture, using clay can help reduce acne.
Another effective face mask for blackheads and pimples is charcoal. Charcoal has natural detoxifying benefits, drawing out deep toxins and other impurities. Since this particular ingredient can be a bit drying, we love charcoal in a gel mask version like this one, since it detoxifies and moisturizes at once. You can also invest in a charcoal sheet mask removing blackheads on the go.
If you’re looking for a face mask to remove pimples, invest in a popular coffeehouse beverage, but on your skin instead of in your tummy this time. Matcha detoxes the system, with pore-cleansing power, and also reduces redness and acne since it is anti-inflammatory by nature. Matcha is also antibacterial, which stops acne from rising up. We love this green tea matcha mud mask to fight both clogged pores and pimples.
Blackhead removal tips
1. Don’t just leave your blackheads open once they’re cleared -try to wash with cold or lukewarm water to seal them back up.
2. In more severe cases, choose a retinoid removal cream. Retinoids target blackheads and pores by reducing stickiness of the cells that clog them. This cream can also improve the rate of skin regeneration.
3. Don’t use comedogenic products. Noncomedogenic means that it won’t cause clogged pores. Read labels carefully.
4. If you’re doing a DIY extraction, never use your nails, which can puncture skin. Being gentle is the most important. If you pick, scratch or use nails to extract, you can permanently scar. Instead, place your hands wider than the blackhead, so your hands aren’t directly on them when you squeeze.
5. Avoid using over-the-counter acne spot treatments that contain benzoyl peroxide. since this substance doesn’t work with all kinds of acne. While it can reduce swelling which is helpful for pimples, blackheads are not considered inflammatory so this product might just aggravate skin.