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Tips for Getting Rid of Blackheads
Check your makeup – The truth is, what you put on to cover blackheads up might actually be causing more of them! If you wear lots of heavy foundation or use thick face creams, you could be contributing to the problem with your products! In general, if you have a problem with greasy skin and clogged pores, consider using as few products as you can. The fewer layers of stuff that you put on your face, the better.
Lots of water & healthy eating – Cliche’, maybe, but it’s so true. What you put into your body shows on the outside. Simple as that. If you eat lots of greasy crap, your skin is not going to look as good as it would if you ate more veggies and drank more water.
Use BHA – BHA stands for Beta Hydroxy Acid, which is an exfoliant that removes the dead layer of skin from your face. If you’ve ever seen a skincare product that contains salicylic acid, that’s BHA. BHA is important for getting rid of blackheads because it goes into your pores to clean out the excess oil and dead skin cells that make up blackheads.
Do a clay mask once a week – This is only for those of you with oily or combination skin. Dry skin, obviously, needs all the oil it can get. Blackheads are partially caused by excess oil on your face, so if you have greasy skin, a good quality clay mask will help sop up some of the grease and keep your pores clearer. Using it once a week is enough – you don’t want to over-dry your skin, because this could lead to even more problems!
Don’t bother with a pore strip – First of all, they’re basically useless for getting rid of anything that’s stuck deep in your pores. Second of all, they can actually damage your skin! I know these things look like miracle products, but save your money because they aren’t really going to help.
Squeeze, but do it carefully! - This is one situation where picking your face may actually help instead of making things worse. Don’t take this as permission to pick at your face all you want! There is a right and a wrong way to squeeze blackheads and it’s really important that you do it the right way.
First, wash your face with a gentle cleanser. (I like Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser.) Next, cover your face with a warm, wet cloth for 10 to 15 minutes. Pat your face dry, then wrap tissues around your fingers to prevent slippage. Use GENTLE pressure to press down then up around the sides of the blackhead. If nothing happens after one or two tries, stop. That means the blackhead isn’t ready to come out yet. Whatever you do, don’t pinch, use your nails or press too hard. This can damage your skin and might even lead to scars!
See a dermatologist – If all else fails, a derm can really help you out. They can prescribe things like Retin-A, antibiotics or Accutane, which can all help with blackheads. Procedures like microdermabrasion are also said to be effective, but I recommend trying the above steps first because the problem can usually clear itself up without these extreme treatments.
At the end of the day, blackheads are kind of an ongoing battle. For those of us who are prone to them, light makeup, gentle cleansers and BHA treatments are necessary to get rid of them and keep them away. There isn’t any magical cure that will rid you of them forever, but taking good care of you skin on an ongoing basis will work wonders.