Blackheads, also known as comedones on the face can be tricky to deal with. They can show up even when you take good care of your skin and be challenging to rid of them. Blackheads are clogged pores filled with dead skin, and excess facial oil, which turn black in color when they come in contact with the environment. You can get rid of blackheads at home with the help of some home remedies.
The home remedies for blackheads are as follows –
Sugar, coconut oil, and jojoba oil
Sugar is one of the best natural exfoliating agents that clears clogged pores and removes dead skin cells. Coconut oil strengthens the protective barrier of the skin, moisturizes it, and makes it soft and supple. It also has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial properties, which help reduce redness and irritation. Jojoba oil is an extremely potent natural moisturizer. It works for all skin types and has anti-microbial properties. It also absorbs excess oil on the skin.
Mix one spoon of coconut oil, or jojoba oil with sugar and gently scrub it on the face. After scrubbing, wash the area with soap. After drying the face, massage extra virgin coconut oil into the skin till it is absorbed by the pores. The latter step can be skipped by people with oily skin.
Use this scrub 2-3 times a week for visible results.
Oatmeal is yet another effective exfoliant that helps remove dead skin cells, which are responsible for clogging pores that lead to blackheads. Oatmeal also helps restore moisture to dry skin to improve the overall appearance of the skin and reduce irritation. It also creates a protective layer on the skin that guards it against harmful bacteria and UV rays.
Mix 2 tablespoons of oatmeal, 3 tablespoons yogurt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and 1 tablespoon lemon juice in a clean bowl. Before applying this scrub, ensure that your face is clean. Dampen the skin slightly and apply the scrub with clean hands in small circular motions for a couple of minutes. Leave the mask on for about 15 minutes and then wash off with cold water as it helps in sealing the pores. Pat dry skin and finish with a moisturizer.
Raw honey and cinnamon scrub
Honey is a natural humectant that hydrates the skin and removes blackheads and whiteheads on the skin. It acts as a natural exfoliator and controls acne. It also has some potent anti-aging properties. Cinnamon has antibacterial properties that help cleanse the pores and remove blackheads. It also has pore tightening characteristics.
Mix 1 teaspoon raw honey with 1 tablespoon cinnamon powder to form a paste. Apply this paste on a cleansed face and put a cotton strip over it. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes and then peel the strip. Repeat this once or twice a week for visible results.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is non-comedogenic, i.e. it does not clog pores. It also helps reduce dark spots on the skin, is anti-bacterial, controls acne, calms redness, swelling and inflammation, and gives smooth and clear skin.
Mix a few drops of tea tree oil with coconut oil, sweet almond oil, or a regular moisturizer and massage it into the skin paying more attention to the blackhead-prone areas. Ensure that you do not use tea tree oil directly on the face.
Sugar and tomato
Tomatoes contain a powerful antioxidant called lycopene which helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, moisturizes skin, brightens complexion, reduces acne and tanning, controls the production of oil on the face, and gives brighter, supple, and radiant skin. Sugar helps exfoliate the skin and remove the layer of dead skin cells that cause blackheads.
Take a medium or large tomato and 3 tablespoons of sugar. Cut the top of the tomato (do not cut too thin) and dip it in the sugar. Ensure that you have an even layer of sugar on the tomato. Start scrubbing your face with the tomato in gentle circular motions for a couple of minutes. Let this mixture sit on your face for 10 minutes and then wash with cool water. Pat dry skin and finish with a moisturizer.
Use this scrub once a week for visible results.
Things to avoid
Here are some things to avoid while getting rid of blackheads
- Blackhead extractors: a blackhead extractor, also known as a comedone extractor is a metal or plastic tool. Although these tools are said to be effective in extracting blackheads, when used incorrectly they do more harm than good. When used incorrectly, they lead to bruising, micro-tears, redness, scarring, infection, and acne breakouts.
- Popping or pressing blackheads: when you press or try to pop a blackhead, there is a risk of pushing the blackheads deeper into the skin. This can cause more acne breakouts, pain, and scarring and make your skin prone to infections.
- Glue: many viral online hack videos recommend using glue like Fevicol, to remove blackheads. However, glue can clog pores and might cause allergic reactions.
- Toothpaste: although toothpaste has antibacterial properties, it has a basic pH (the natural pH of the skin is acidic), which might irritate the skin. It is comedogenic which means it clogs pores, making your skin prone to acne and blackheads. It also strips away the skin from its natural oils.
- Baking soda: it is an extremely drying ingredient that can lead to an early onset of fine lines and wrinkles, acne breakouts, irritation, and inflammation. It also intervenes with the natural pH of the skin.
It might take some time for natural skin care remedies to work, but it is essential to not overdo it. If you notice that you are allergic to any of the ingredients, avoid using them. Always perform a patch test before trying any natural remedy.