Unless you are blessed with clean, clear, and perfect skin that is never exposed to oil and grime, the chances are that you have or will encounter a blackhead too. Blackheads are a mild form of acne that is usually caused by the clogging of hair follicles in the skin.
When you see blackheads, you might want to squeeze out the blockage in your pore, but this is not the right thing to do. Popping or picking blackheads can be tempting, but it is not worth it.
By popping them not only, can you damage your skin, but blackheads are not that harmful to your skin also?
Let’s dig deep to know more about blackheads and how you can remove them safely
What is a Blackhead?
Blackheads, also known as comedones, are usually misunderstood as trapped dirt in your skin. But in reality, they are small deposits of dead skin cells. The pigment melanin is present in those cells that darken your skin. This pigment can turn dark when exposed to oxygen, and it happens as a result of open pores in the skin.
Squeezing and scrubbing blackheads can make them worse. Blackheads are not usually associated with acne, but they are one of the different types.
Symptoms of Blackhead
Blackheads show up on your skin when the pores clog and pores turn color. The dead skin cells collect in the pore, which is why you might notice them.
You might see some slight swelling around the clogged pore and notice that the blackhead is becoming larger.
Causes of Blackheads
Blackheads are not caused due to stress, dirt, or dust. The foremost cause of blocked pores is dead skin cells. The skin is always regenerating, and new cells are created. The old ones die and fall off.
But the thing is, dead cells do not always flake off, and sometimes they can block the pores. When the pores are blocked, the oil produced by skin glands does not leave the pores. These skin cells build-up, and they can turn dark when oxidized and blackheads start to form.
People with blackheads should not pop, rub, squeeze or pick it. There are some good-quality blackhead removal extractors available on the market that you can buy to easily remove them from your skin.
Other than blackhead removers, the healthcare providers also suggest prescription medications depending upon the solution that can be applied directly to the skin.
Before removing the blackhead, it is better to spend some time in a warm bath or shower. Steam helps to relax your pores, and the clogs in your pore start to loosen on their own.
Here are some of the steps you can follow to remove the blackhead
● Wash Your Hands and Face
First of all, wash your hands and face to prevent infection on your skin. Skin is a great medium for bacterial growth. You might want to put on latex gloves or plastic if you have them.
● Apply Pressure on Clogged pore
You can use cotton gauze or tissue paper as a barrier between your hand and face.
● Moving Your Fingers on Clogs
It is important to keep in mind that you are about to remove blockage made of dead skin cells and oil. You might need an expert who knows how much pressure it is needed to apply. Do not press too hard to cut the skin or bruise it.
● Feel the Clog Pop Out
If you are not able to remove the beakhead with this procedure, give your skin time to recover.
● Cleanse the Area
Keep your skin clean and keep your pores free from debris that causes blackheads.
Products that You Can Use To Remove Blackheads
You can use pore strips, cleansers, and retinoids to remove blackheads. However, pore strips can also remove natural oil from the skin, which can cause dryness and irritation to the skin.
One of the primary reasons for blackhead formation is the overproduction of natural oil in your skin. Therefore, it is important to deal with the underlying cause because even if you remove blackheads, they will keep coming back if the root cause is not managed.
For stubborn blackheads, you can contact your dermatologist for extraction.
Use Of Blackhead Removal Extractors
Tools called blackhead removal extractors are good in removing blackheads. These tools are made of stainless steel and have small circles in the end. With a little practice, you can easily use these tools to remove blackheads from your face easily.
Removing your blackheads yourself with the use of a blackhead removal extractor is much easier and safer.
Reasons Why You Should Not Extract Blackheads Yourself
Many people think squeezing blackheads or popping them with nails is fine, but it is against skincare rules. There is a whole procedure of removing blackheads from your skin, and unless you are trained, you might cause damage to your skin.
Blackheads are quite resilient and hard to remove. You might squeeze the skin without being able to remove them. It can cause irritation to the skin, and more bacteria can get inside pores leading to nodules and cysts.
Squeezing your skin can put pressure on your skin, resulting in inflammation in the area where you are trying to remove blackheads. At the same time, the tissues surrounding the blackhead can also develop dark spots due to hyperpigmentation. A blackhead is temporary, but dark spots and scarring are permanent.
In the effort to remove the pore, you can stretch your pore, leaving it permanently enlarged. Therefore, it is better to leave the work to professionals and get a professional facial. They will prepare your skin and also use the right apparatus instead of hands. Avoid picking blackheads and find some professional method.
Removing a blackhead once in a while is important for healthy skin, and it is also safe, but do not make it a habit of removing them every now and then.
It is highly recommended to make an appointment with your dermatologist so you can get to know about your skin and what will be the safest method for you.
DR. Linda Martin is a cosmetic dermatologist practicing in Miami, Florida. She formulates articles with practical information for the audience and students. She has written several review articles on skincare and encourages people to follow a healthy skincare routine.