Blackheads appear on the skin as black spots caused by widened follicles containing sebum(oil), bacteria and dead cells. They are commonly black because sebum contains melanin which, when exposed to air oxidises and turns black.
Blackheads are mainly caused by the overproduction of oil, which may be attributed to hormonal level changes especially during:
- Menstruation and premenstrual period
Most people experience blackheads on the T-zone, which is the forehead, temple, nose and chin. This is because the oil glands in these areas are more active. There are various ways of treating blackheads. However, squeezing blackheads is not a method to get rid of them. This is because:
- By squeezing them, you apply pressure on the skin, which ends up damaging the walls of pores on our skin. The skin is thin and delicate and therefore applying pressure to a certain area will only make it worse. You will end up injuring the follicles and skin tissues causing inflammation. The blackhead then turns into a small wound.
- Blackheads contain pus that can spread to surrounding skin tissue as a result of squeezing, causing it to burst. When this substance spreads, it can cause more blemishes of acne and pimples.
Instead of squeezing them out on your own, you should go for a facial treatment and allow the professionals to do the work for you. It is important to note that it may be impossible to live completely blackheads free. This is because the skin will always produce sebum. This sebum is essential as it;
- It prevents entry of bacteria and germs into the skin. Sebum is produced for protective reasons.
- For lubrication. Sebum keeps the skin from drying out which can cause the skin to crack and bleed.
Having that in mind, it is easier to just let the blackheads clear on their own. However, there are various ways to prevent and help clear blackheads. Apart from going for an acne facial, you can practice these habits on your own to reduce the development of blackheads.
Tips for Prevention of Blackheads
- Cleaning regularly using mild soaps. This opens up pores by cleaning out dead cells, bacteria and oil that has accumulated in the pores. It also helps to keep sebum production low. Also, using mild soaps will prevent skin irritation.
- Use skin products with less oil. This will help to keep your pores open by not clogging them with oil aside from the oil from sebum.
- Do not wash your face too often. Some people wash their faces frequently in a bid to clear blackheads. This might be detrimental as it causes the skin to dry out and become irritated. Remember, sebum keeps the skin lubricated. Over washing face also causes the formation of acne.
- Be gentle on your face. When cleaning your face, avoid using an excessively abrasive substance or rubbing hard on your skin. Skin is delicate and sensitive, hence it requires gentleness.
Good looking skin is just a way of showing how responsible you are. Taking care of your face especially if you have sensitive skin might seem tough and expensive but it gives a good account of who you are at the end of the day.