5 Simple DIY Blackhead Remedies
What are Blackheads and What Causes Them?
Blackheads are a mild form of acne usually occurring on the face, but can affect other areas of the body as well. Blackheads occur when pores or hair follicles become blocked with dirt, oil, and dead skin cells. Blackheads are referred to as "open comedones" where as a pimple is a "closed comedone." Because blackheads are open they are exposed to air which causes the sebum trapped in the pore to oxidize and turn dark. A blackhead is basically a blocked, non-infected pimple, and they have the potential to worsen into larger, more painful pimples.
A common misconception is that blackheads are caused by poor hygiene, this is not the case. While environmental factors can make conditions better for blackheads to form they cannot simply be washed away because they are not dirt. They have to be extracted or pulled out using another method.
How to Prevent Blackheads
First, make sure any make-up or skincare products you are using are noncomedogenic, meaning they won't cause comedones. Most products will have this on the packaging, so you just have to look for it.
Exfoliate often. Blackheads are mostly dead skin that has been trapped in a pore then mixed with oil. By exfoliating you're removing dead skin cells and allowing your skin to breathe. Pores are less likely to get blocked if you exfoliate a few times a week
Don't pick at them or try to pop them. This can cause the bacteria to go deeper into the skin and become infected which will cause a pimple. Plus it can damage your skin and leave scarring.
Egg White Mask
- tissue or toilet paper
- 1 egg
- a bowl
- clean makeup brush
In a bowl, separate the egg white from the yolk. Using the makeup brush paint the egg white onto your face wherever you have blackheads. While the egg white is still wet apply a thin piece of toilet paper or tissue over it and allow it to dry. Very gently apply another layer of the egg white over the tissue paper. Do this until you have 3 layers. Allow everything to dry completely, your face may begin to feel tight, that just means it's working. When the mask is dry peel off very gently. Rinse your face with cool water and make sure you remove any remaining egg or tissue and follow with your regular moisturizer. This mask is best used 1-2 times a week.
Baking Soda Blackhead Scrub
- baking soda
- small bowl
- clean washcloth
Starting with freshly cleaned skin wet a washcloth with warm water and hold it over the areas where you have blackheads. Repeat this a few times until you feel you have allowed your pores to open up. In a bowl, take a tablespoon of baking soda and add water very slowly mixing it as you go. Do this until you have a thick paste. Apply the mixture to your face in the areas where you have blackheads. It's best not to use this over your whole face as baking soda can be drying. Let it sit on your face for 5 minutes. Use warm water to wet the areas where you applied the baking soda and massage it into your skin for about 1 minute using gentle circular motions. Rinse your face with warm water and apply moisturizer as usual. For best results repeat this 2-3 times a week.
Milk & Honey Pore Strips
- clean cotton strip
- 1 tablespoon of raw, organic honey
- 1 tablespoon of milk (whole or 2% is fine)
- small bowl
In a bowl, mix together the milk and honey. Place the mixture in the microwave for about 5 or 6 seconds. Make sure not to microwave any longer than this, allowing it to get too hot will destroy the antibacterial properties of the honey. Mix again after you microwave it. Make sure it's not too hot and use clean fingers to apply the mixture to your skin where you have blackheads. Apply the cotton strip over top of this. The mixture should be tacky so it will be easy to get the cotton strip to stick to it. Leave on for 15-20 minutes, to allow it to dry. Once dry peel the cotton strip off gently. Rinse face with warm water and apply moisturizer as usual. This is best used 2-3 times a week.
Hydrogen Peroxide Blackhead Treatment
- 3% hydrogen peroxide (this is the kind most commonly found in stores)
- cotton ball
- any kind of exfoliating scrub
Using warm water wet the washcloth and hold it over the areas that you have blackheads for about 10 seconds, repeat this until you feel your pores are open. Wet your face and use the exfoliating scrub on your entire face, focussing extra on the areas that you have blackhead, rinse your face and dry. Wet the cotton ball with the hydrogen peroxide and dab it on the areas you have blackheads, be careful to keep clear of eyebrows or hair as it can bleach it. Wait about 3 minutes then rinse face with warm water and moisturize as usual. This method can be used as often as every other day.
- 1 pack of plain, dry gelatin powder (unflavored)
- 3 teaspoons of milk (whole or 2% are fine)
- small bowl
In a bowl add 3 teaspoons of milk and mix in the dry gelatin slowly until you have a thick paste. Microwave for 10-15 seconds, and mix again. Apply the mixture to clean, dry skin. Leave on for about 15 minutes, or until it feels dry and tightens up. Peel off the mask and rinse the face with warm water making sure to remove any gelatin that got left behind. Moisturize as usual. This is best used 2-3 times a week.
- All of these methods are best used on skin that has been exfoliated, cleansed, and dried. They will be a lot more effective if you don't have a layer of dead skin blocking the mask from the blackhead.
- Some of these methods may be drying, pay attention to your skin and use with caution.