All you need to know about Blackheads

How to treat blackheads

So it seems like overnight your child goes from a fresh faced cherub to a moody teen with pimples and blackheads popping up along with the added bonus of delightful body odour!

Pimples come and go but blackheads tend to stick around for the long haul. Blackheads are actually clogged hair follicles and can appear anywhere on the body there is hair!

Blackheads form when a clog or plug develops in the opening of hair follicles in your skin. Each follicle contains one hair and a sebaceous glad that produces oil. This oil, called sebum, helps keep your skin soft. Dead skin cells and oils collect in the opening to the skin follicle, producing a bump called a comedo. If the skin over the bump stays closed, the bump is called a whitehead. When the skin over the bump opens, exposure to the air causes it to look black and a blackhead forms.

Some factors can increase your chances of developing acne and blackheads, including:

  • producing excess oil or sebum undergoing hormonal changes that cause an increase in oil production during the teen years
  • the build-up of the Propionibacterium acnes bacteria on the skin
  • irritation of the hair follicles when dead skins cells don’t shed on a regular basis

Because of their dark colour, blackheads are easy to spot on the skin. They’re slightly raised, although they aren’t painful because they aren’t inflamed like pimples. Pimples form when bacteria invade the blockage in the hair follicle, causing redness and inflammation.  

So how to prevent blackheads from forming?

  • Wash your face 1-2 times a day with warm water and cleanser. Once a day is usually enough for young skin but it will depend on the severity of the blackheads & how much sweat and oil is produced on the skin. This will vary from person to person.
  • Always wash your face after exercising and sweating to remove bacteria
  • Moisturise daily after cleansing, this will prevent the skin drying out and producing more oil to compensate
  • Use oil free sunscreen, our Protect face sunscreen has anti-acne properties and is for sensitive skin.
  • Exfoliate – our Clean face and Hydrate face contain natural fruit enzymes which gently exfoliate your face and remove dead skin cells
  • Do not touch your face!

To squeeze or not to squeeze? NO is the resounding answer from skin specialists and dermatologists. It can actually push the inflammation further into the skin and cause scarring. Also a big no no are pore strips, whilst they are quite satisfying to use they can rip the skin and make the problem worse.

In summary, clean skin is the way to go! If you are concerned see a dermatologist or skin specialist for professional removal of blackheads.