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Skin & Hair

How To Prevent And Remove Blackheads

Dr. Pragnya Rao

Blackheads appear when hair follicles get clogged with dirt, oil & dead skin.

Blackheads are a type of acne that appear when hair follicles get clogged with dirt, oil and dead skin. These are a mild type of acne that mostly appear on the face. Sometimes they can also appear on other areas of the body such as back, chest, neck, arms, and shoulder. 

How do blackheads appear?

The skin has oil glands that produce an oil called sebum. When hair follicles get clogged with this oil along with dead skin, a bump is formed on the skin known as a comedone or comedo. If the tip of this comedone is closed, then a whitehead is formed if it is open, then due to exposure to air, it turns black forming a blackhead. 

Factors that can increase the risks of forming blackheads are-

  • Oily skin, prolonged use of excessive makeup
  • The buildup of skin bacteria in pores and frequent exposure to dust and pollution
  • Undergoing hormonal changes due to various factors that increase oil production
  • Taking certain kinds of medication and comedogenic skin products

Getting rid of blackheads

Because of the black colour, blackheads are pretty easy to spot and unlike pimples, they are not painful. Just because they are not painful, doesn’t mean it’s okay to pinch or pick them out. This can lead to unnecessary scarring. Mentioned below are some tips that can help in getting rid of blackheads once they appear-

  • Avoid pore strips and extractions. While they can clear the dirt from skin pores they can also rip out essential elements such as oil and hair follicles which can lead to dryness and irritation.
  • While exfoliation may not be right for certain kinds of acne, it works for blackheads. Exfoliation using AHAs and BHAs can remove dead skin from the face and also help in removing the existing blackheads.
  • Retinoids are also an effective treatment for blackheads and can be used for really stubborn cases. They fight blackheads by unclogging the pores and are available as OTC medication.
  • Clay and charcoal masks are both deep cleansers that are a must for those with oily skins. They can both root out impurities from deep within the pores. Certain clay masks also come with sulphur which helps in the breakdown of dead skin cells. 

The best way to fight blackheads is to take precautions and follow proper skin hygiene. Things like not sleeping with makeup on, using non-comedogenic skin products and routine visits to dermatologists go a long way in ensuring a healthy skin free from all types of acne. Download the mfine app and consult the best skin specialists from your city.

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