Blackheads: Who knew that something so small could be so frustrating? Blackheads are also called open comedones. They have blocked pores developed from natural skin oils and excess sebum, and when open, skin oils react with the air, turning pores into brown or black, flat, or slightly raised small dots. If you are dealing with blackheads, we have some great tips for you, including our unique purifying masks.
Why We Get Blackheads
Contrary to popular belief, blackheads are not trapped in the dirt in the skin. Blackheads actually develop from the skin itself: Hair follicles get blocked with skin oils, and the oil turns a darker color. If the follicle is closed, then it turns into a whitehead, which, as the name would imply, creates a white bump rather than a black one.
Most people get blackheads due to increased oil production. This happens naturally during the teen years and the early 20s, though in some people, it can persist through middle age. Hot, humid weather can also prompt someone to develop blackheads and wear tight or sweaty clothing.
Another cause is using harsh products that dry out the skin. While it might sound counter-intuitive, these products cause the skin to create more oil, not less. In turn, this overproduction can cause acne, including blackheads.
Meet Masque Vivant, the Blackhead Removal Game-Changer
There are many blackhead removal options to consider, but one of our favorites is to use Masque Vivant by Biologique Recherche. This is a natural face mask that removes impurities from the skin. Several active ingredients work together to create a flawless blackhead removal solution:
- Yeast extract. High concentrations of yeast help regulate and purifies the skin.
- Cucumber and witch hazel. Skin-soothing ingredients for reducing redness and inflammation.
- Lactic acid. This adds moisture to your skin to prevent excess oil production.
It is easy to use Masque Vivant. You can, of course, use it as a balancing mask par excellence. Smooth it on all the way up to the hairline, then rinse it off. If you have very oily skin, you can add a pinch of baking soda and a few drops of Complexe Iribiol Serum, which is our purifying and regenerating botanical serum.
You can also apply Masque Vivant as a spot-treatment. Dab it onto trouble areas before you go to bed, allow it to penetrate your skin overnight, and rinse it off in the morning before following your normal skin-care routine.
How to Prevent Blackheads and Breakouts
The best treatment for all skin types and maladies is prevention. Not all blackheads can be prevented, of course: You can have impeccable skincare habits and still get blackheads. Still, doing what you can to keep your skin in good condition can go far toward helping you avoid at least some breakouts.
First, clean your skin regularly. For most people, this will mean using a gentle cleanser at the end of the day. Always remove your makeup before bed, as leaving makeup on can clog pores and lead to blackheads and larger acne lesions.
You should also wash your face in the morning, but if your skin feels unusually dry, splashing it with cool water and blotting it with a soft towel may be enough as long as you washed it well the night before. Exfoliate your skin weekly using a soft washcloth or an exfoliating cleanser. Please do not do this too often, as it can inflame sensitive skin.
While you should not use alcohol products because those are usually too dry, you can try a salicylic acid cleanser if you are prone to breakouts. Use them every two or three days at first, until your skin gets used to it, then if it is not too drying, you can switch to daily if you want to.
Using Masque Vivant weekly can help prevent dead skin cells’ breakouts, keeping skin purified and extra clean without drying it out. Try not to touch your face because you will transfer oil and dirt from your hands onto your face.
While blackheads are not filled with dirt, any foreign debris can still clog your pores and make you more susceptible to all types of breakouts. If you are wearing a cloth face mask, be sure to clean your skin before and after wearing it, and always wear a clean mask; don’t re-use them.
Blackhead Removal-Boosting Lifestyle Habits
Your skin is your largest organ, and it reflects your overall health. You can make some healthy lifestyle choices that can make it less likely that you will deal with breakouts. First, try to eat as healthily as you can. Focus on eating whole grains like whole-wheat bread and brown rice rather than more processed grains like flour-based cereals and white bread.
Also, add plenty of fruits and vegetables to your diet. These can be canned, frozen, or fresh; whatever you have available and can afford is fine. Choose lean protein sources like fish, eggs, chicken, and legumes. You have heard the adage, “you are what you eat,” and your skin will benefit from good nutrition.
Get plenty of sleep, as good sleep hygiene has a direct impact on the skin rejuvenation process. If you do not drop off to sleep easily, try avoiding electronics for an hour or so before bed. Also, keep your room cool at night and try not to eat anything heavy within a couple of hours of bedtime.
All of these sleep hygiene practices will make it easier for you to get your 40 winks. Be sure to exercise, because it will improve the circulation to your skin and the rest of your body. Just make sure you wash your face afterward and gently pat it dry.
Finally, remember not to pick at or squeeze your blackheads. Your skin technician can remove them in some cases, but you should not use your fingers to extract acne, which can spread infection and make the problem worse. Just stick to a good cleansing routine and to making healthy lifestyle choices when possible.