Face Care Guide: Free Yourself of Blackheads and Blemishes
Everyone would love a flawless complexion, but many of us are often marred by such imperfections as blackheads and pimples. Both of these common problems can afflict people at any age and with any type of skin. If you’ve tried to use traditional blackhead removers and pimple poppers without much success, it could be that you need to reevaluate your facial skin care routine. In other words, you might need to find a remedy that will revitalize your facial skin to effectively combat those stubborn black spots and blemishes.
Free Yourself of Blackheads and Blemishes
For people burdened with black heads and skin blemishes, it is important to realize that common “cures” for these two skin problems often don’t work for a reason: they could be doing more harm than good. For example, it’s not unusual for people burdened with these problems to try to scrub blackheads away because, in effect, this would seem like the natural solution. However, blackheads are actually oxidized dead skin cells and oils that are lodged within your pores. They can’t be scrubbed away. Similarly, people burdened with acne often go overboard when washing their skin in the hopes that this will help to reduce the prevalence of blackheads. In fact, over-scrubbing can be even more damaging than helpful to someone with delicate facial skin.
So, here are some tips people have found effective for eliminating those pesky complexion concerns for good:
Aggressive cleansers are the worst offenders when it comes to treating problematic skin. Look for ingredients such as tea tree oil, aloe, and cucumber, all of which are cooling agents that can gently cleanse and clarify the skin. For more stubborn acne, a cleanser infused with antibacterial salicylic acid can gently exfoliate and treat the skin. The goal is to prime your skin and not to over-scrub and, so, strip away the skin.
Toner is a skin care product that is often overlooked by many, yet its ability to gently smooth and remove oil from facial skin should not be ignored. Consider it the blackhead remover you didn’t know you needed! An alcohol-free toner can unclog pores and restore your skin’s pH balance, which helps to improve the health of your pores and reduce acne.
Retinol is one of the skin care world’s heavy hitters: It produces results when all other options fail. Retinol may raise alarms for those with sensitive skin, because it is an extremely powerful ingredient. But there are low-strength products that include retinol (such as moisturizers) available that are easier for people with sensitive skin to tolerate. Retinoids accelerate the turnover rate of your skin cells, which results in fewer clogged pores—and that means fewer blemishes and blackheads. It’s best to apply retinol at night, so your skin can take the time to heal during the hours you spend sleeping. This ingredient should be used sparingly in the beginning because it is indeed powerful, and it takes time to work — but retinoids are perhaps the best cure for acne irritated skin.
Much like having a habit of popping pimples, exfoliating on a daily basis can lead to long-term damage. However, you do want to make sure that you’re sloughing off those dead skin cells regularly. A mild, gentle scrub used about twice a week is effective at removing dead skin cells; however, if you want to take a more organic approach, you can also invest in a sponge made from natural fibers for your exfoliating needs. To exfoliate, moisten the sponge or scrub with warm water and gently run it over your skin.
It’s also helpful to add a facial mask to your weekly routine. At least twice a week, apply a healing mud mask to your skin. It will soak up impurities, reduce the size of pores, and leave skin smoother and more balanced. Facial masks can provide powerful results that you’ll truly notice the more you use them. By using a mud mask, you'll also find yourself reaching for the blackhead remover far less often! Mud masks really do work.
It’s a common misconception that people with oily skin, which is more prone to acne and blackheads, don’t need to moisturize. Even if you’re a slave to pimple poppers and blackhead removers, however, you need to maintain your skin’s moisture with an oil-free hydrator. Keeping your complexion balanced is key to maintaining healthy, blemish- and blackhead-free pores.
Different skin problems call for targeted care and the use of products and ingredients that are specifically formulated to treat those specific problems. A blackhead remover is designed to gently extract stubborn pimples—the ones that you may be tempted to otherwise pick and pop. Remember that chronically popping pimples can have hazardous consequences for skin because it causes scarring and pigmentation.
We’ve saved the most important step for last. Although it’s critical to treat problematic skin the right away, it’s even more important to protect that skin from damaging ultraviolet rays. If you’re headed outdoors, apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen to your skin. There are portable stick sun blocks perfectly sized for popping into your purse for when you are out and about and find yourself in the sun. A water-resistant formula is excellent if you’re going to take a dip in the pool. All said, the more you care for your skin, the healthier it will be—and the easier it will be to prevent those pesky blackheads and blemishes from forming.