Blackheads – or comedones as they are technically known – are a really common problem that can affect all skin types. However they’re particularly problematic for those with oily skin. Luckily there are a few different methods and products available to help you get rid of blackheads.
A blackhead is formed by a plug of sebum or oil becoming trapped in a pore. The plug becomes hard and oxidises turning black, hence the name. They’re most commonly found on oily areas of the face especially the chin, forehead and sides of the nostrils. Very oily skin may also have blackheads on the cheeks and tip of the nose. In addition they can occur on the chest, back and anywhere where there is a build up of oily sebum.
If left the blackhead will continue to build up until it stretches the pore permanently. This is why areas that have blackheads often have open pores that clog easily and thus produce more blackheads. If dirt enters the pore or they become infected the blackhead may turn into a whitehead. To keep the skin clear and smooth it’s essential to keep blackheads at bay.
So How Do I Get Rid of Blackheads?
If a blackhead is large and there is no infection present you can ‘extract’ it yourself. To do this you firstly need to soften the skin by having a hot shower or by steaming your face over a bowl of hot water. Even a hot flannel (not so hot you scald yourself!) placed over the area will soften the blockages making them easier to lift out. You can also try a solution designed to soften stubborn blackheads. You can then either use a tissue and clean fingers to gently squeeze out the blockage or use an extractor.