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How to get rid of blackheads

Learn how to remove and prevent blackheads without damaging your skin.

story highlights

  • Exfoliating, masking and bacteria-fighting to remove and prevent blackheads
  • Masks and moisturizers help soften existing blackheads to make removal easier, but the most effective way to remove existing blackheads is to have them removed by a professional.

When it comes to blackhead removal, prevention is key. Blackheads form when excess sebum (oil), dead skin cells, and bacteria that cause breakouts collect in the follicles and form a "plug". This plug still lets in a little air, which is why this mixture turns black - like a sliced apple.

5 Ways to Prevent Blackheads
Untreated blackheads can lead to breakouts. That's why it's important to keep your pores clear with these tips:

Exfoliate

1. exfoliate

After double cleansing, remove excess dead skin cells with a powder exfoliator, scrub, or a leave-on scrub that contains ingredients like salicylic acid.

Masque

2nd mask

Apply a mask once or twice a week to soften and remove blackheads. Look for ingredients like kaolin clay or binchotan activated charcoal, which help remove excess oil and impurities, and sulfur, which can eliminate dead skin cells.

Control bacteria

3. control bacteria

Apply an antibacterial booster or serum daily to kill the bacteria that cause breakouts. Look for ingredients like salicylic acid, azelaic acid, and thymol with terpineol.

Moisturize

4. moisturize

Apply a moisturizer every day, even if you have oily skin. When your skin's moisture levels are unbalanced, your skin produces excess oil to compensate. A moisturizer helps regulate sebum production so excess oil doesn't clog follicles.

Wear non-comedogenic products

5. wear non-comedogenic products

Makeup, some sunscreens, and hair products can clog pores, especially if they stay on your skin overnight. Choose products labeled "non-comedogenic" to keep pores unclogged, and always double cleanse your skin before bed.

How to remove existing blackheads fast
Existing blackheads are difficult to remove at home. Pushing them out with your fingernails not only harms your skin, but also spreads bacteria that causes breakouts, which can lead to more severe acne.

To remove existing blackheads quickly, you should see a professional skin therapist. Inquire if express treatments are offered, which are more convenient and less expensive than full facials.

Pro Tip! Dehydration makes blackhead removal more difficult, so drink plenty of water and hydrate before you have your blackheads removed.
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