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Blackheads are a common skin woe that many of us face, whether they’re scattered across our T-zone or sporadically dotting our nose. The urge to squeeze and pop them might be strong, offering a sense of instant gratification. However, dermatologists caution against this temptation, as it can lead to more harm than good. In the following article, we will talk about the causes and symptoms of blackheads. With this, we will delve into the best blackhead treatments and explore derms recommended alternatives for preventing and treating these pesky blemishes.

What Are Blackheads?

If we talk about blackheads and what causes them, so a blackhead forms when a pore or hair follicle becomes clogged with a combination of sebum, dead skin cells, and bacteria, resulting in an open comedone. Exposure to air oxidizes the trapped oil and dead skin cells, causing the clogged pore to take on a dark brown or black appearance. This sets blackheads apart from other forms of acne, such as closed comedones (whiteheads) and inflammatory acne like pimples and cystic breakouts.

Understanding Blackheads: Common Areas Beyond the Face

Apart from your face, blackheads also appear on the following area:

  • Back
  • Chest
  • Neck
  • Arms
  • Shoulders

Should You Pop Blackheads? 

Despite the temptation, experts unanimously advise against popping blackheads. Attempting extraction at home can exacerbate the issue, leading to increased pain, scarring, and irritation. However, seeking assistance from a trained professional, such as a licensed esthetician, for proper blackhead removal is acceptable. If you find it impossible to resist the urge, opt for using clean fingers wrapped in a tissue for at-home extractions instead of extractors or similar devices, which may cause punctures and scarring.

How to Prevent Blackheads?

Preventing blackheads is primarily about maintaining clear pores. The most crucial step is to keep your skin clean. Ensure you wash your face twice daily and after sweating profusely to prevent the accumulation of oils and dead cells within hair follicles. Use your regular cleanser or one containing an exfoliating ingredient like salicylic acid. Additionally, regular exfoliation is essential. Dermatologists recommend chemical exfoliants such as retinoids, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid over physical scrubs to effectively prevent and treat blackheads without causing harm to your skin.

How to Remove and Treat Blackheads?

According to dermatologists, exfoliating two to three times weekly aids in eliminating existing blackheads. Salicylic acid stands out as an excellent option for this purpose. This beta hydroxy acid effectively treats blackheads by penetrating deep into the hair follicle and oil gland, targeting the root cause. It works by breaking down and dissolving excess oil that leads to clogging. Retinoids also prove beneficial for blackhead treatment as they regulate the emptying process of the oil gland in the hair follicle. However, it’s important to note that these ingredients can increase skin sensitivity to sunlight. Therefore, it’s crucial to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with at least SPF 30 every day.

Top Treatments for Blackheads at AAYNA

At AAYNA, we specialize in addressing concerns that many consider insurmountable. When it comes to removing blackheads, a common yet bothersome issue encountered by countless individuals, we offer effective solutions. Below are the treatments available to eliminate them: 

The Final Takeaway

Although blackheads may be irritating and the urge to pop them understandable, it’s advisable to refrain from attempting manual removal at home to avoid potential skin damage. Instead, consider integrating exfoliating products containing retinoids or salicylic acid into your skincare regimen. Additionally, using pore strips occasionally can be a part of your strategy for managing blackheads effectively.

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