Last updated on November 28th, 2017 at 08:20 pm
What are facial blackheads? What are the triggers and who is vulnerable? More than 17 million people suffer from this problem among other forms of acne in the US. As a teenager, you are the prime target-since experts connect them to hormonal variations. Other than your age, other triggers include certain medications, excessive application of skin products and cosmetics, smoking, stress among other many more.
Get more detailed information about the causes, the meaning, how to spot them, why they are more common on the nose than other parts of your face. You will also learn about related myths, fast, effective and proper treatment, and prevention measures.
Face blackheads are small black colored bumps, spots or dots that appear on your face (forehead, nose, lip line, chin, and cheeks) when the hair follicles are clogged. They are mild types of acne and it is not that life-threatening.
Apart from developing on the face, the can also appear on the back, neck, penile shaft, chest, arms and other parts of the body.
According to American Academy of Dermatology, Acne is the most prevalent skin disease in the United States affecting 40-50 million Americans
There are various misconceptions about the triggers of blackheads and other forms of acne. I am convinced that at least each and every one of us has heard of these myths at some point in our lives. Some are therefore confused; they can’t distinguish facts from fictions. Some of the common interesting myths include:
1. Makeup triggers them!
It wants to make this clear when makeups are properly used this will not be true. What triggers them is when for instance you leave make on overnight, this will lead to clogging
of the skin pores with oils that cannot be released off. Therefore, when you correctly use makeup, then you have nothing to worry about.
2. You can shrink your skin pores
This another myth altogether. There are lots of products outside there claiming to have the ability to shrink the pores. This is wrong and total nonsense! You should note that pore as just holes for removal of oils and habitat for hair follicles. They cannot open and close.
3. Dirt causes them
In a real sense, they are not caused by dirt, it caused by excess skin oil, sebum and built-up toxins secreted by the skin from the blood. If such oils occur in excess, the pores become blocked leading to formation of whiteheads, blackheads and other acne lesions
There are many more myths or superstitions linked to their causes, treatment, and preventions. However, what is key is to leave aside all the myths and understand them medicinal context.
Blackheads are normally identified by darkened, slightly raised non-painful and non-inflamed bumps. The sizes normally vary. Earlier signs may include rough skin, black pores, pores enlargement and peeling skin. Some scars may present to show the previously existing blackhead.
There may be other symptoms but it is important to consult your dermatologist or skin specialist to help confirm their presence. This is very important since it will help choose the best and proper medication.
According to Healthline, “Blackheads form when a clog or plug develops in the opening of hair follicles in your skin.” When the sebaceous glands produce excess sebum, the dead skin cell and sebum can build up in the opening of skin follicle a forming black bump called comedone.
When the comedone is enclosed in the skin layer, it is referred to as whitehead but when it is open, it will be oxidized turning to black and hence the name So below are some of the factors that lead to the development of face blackheads:
1. Overproduction of sebum
Production of excess sebum by the sebaceous glands is one of the major triggers in several parts of the body. The overproduction of excess sebum may be influenced by several factors; the factors are likely to be linked to body chemistry, environmental factors e.t.c.
The facial blackheads may be because of excess sebum clumping together with dead skin cells to block the hair follicles.
2. Taking certain medicines
Some medications can escalate the chances of developing them. In this context, medications such as corticosteroids, lithium, androgens and birth control pills may lead to various skin disorders since they can potentially interfere with one’s body chemistry.
3. Hormonal variation
Why acne more prevalent in individuals during adolescence, pregnancies, menopause and periods? Well, such prevalence is due to hormonal changes during the mentioned periods.
Remember sebum secretion are triggered by a hormone known as androgen whose level tend to rise during pregnancies, puberty, periods and even during menopause. Therefore excess androgen can trigger the development various forms of acne including blackheads among the individuals undergoing the listed periods.
4. Excessive application of cosmetics and skin products
Blackheads on face can also show up after excessive application of cosmetic and certain skin products that tend to block your skin pores. This may lead to their formation forehead, cheeks, chin, jawline and on lips. Some of the natural oils such as coconut oil and cocoa butter are known to clog pores hence hastening the chance of them developing.
5. Wearing helmets and cap
Wearing helmets and caps are very important I agree, but do you know that they can initiate the occurrence of foreheads blackheads? They can lead to excess sweating and even infections if the hygiene is not considered.
Therefore, the most appropriate solution is to make sure that we cover our heads and foreheads using a clean cotton cloth before wearing helmets and even some caps. This will help users protect our heads from dirt that may cause black pores on the forehead.
6. Environmental Factors
Environmental factors such as excess pollution, dirt and small particles in the air have a greater influence development of these black headed zits. The can find their way to your facial pores hence clog them especially when they combine with sebum leading to blackheads outbreaks.
Below are more factors that can as well lead to the formation include:
- Buildup of the p. acne bacteria (Propionibacterium acnes) on the skin genetics
- Blackheads after shaving– Razor Bumps
- Too much humidity
- Sleeping habit (sleeping on one side)
- Excessive smoking
- Excessive consumption of alcohol
- Excessive intake of Caffeine or Chocolate
When on nose
Blackheads tend to be more prevalent in the nose than the other parts of your face because your nose can be oilier because it has a high concentration of oil glands.
Furthermore, intense application of facial creams may just sum up to excess pores blocking oils in your nose. Livestrong.com explains this, “Makeup and skin products with artificial colors or fragrances can also clog up the hair follicles on your nose, causing blackheads to form.” Below are the factors promoting their development on nose:
- Improper cleansing
- Blockage of skin pores
- Environmental pollution
- Oily and combination skin
- Too much humidity
- Hormonal changes
- Excessive use of cosmetics
- Excessive use of oil-based creams
- Excessive consumption of caffeine or chocolate
- Too much-drinking alcohol
The best way to treat those will involve having a prior knowing the cause. The treatments will involve the home remedies, over the counter products and prescribed drugs. Scroll below to get more insight on the best way to remove them from the nose and other parts of the body.
How to get rid of blackheads on face?
Before starting to think about any remedy or treatment, it would be wiser know what causes them. The kind of treatment or remedy will depend on the underlying causes and the mildness or severity. Common treatments include:
Below are the common medications for this type of acne?
a. Benzoyl peroxide
This is the most effective cure. It works by fighting the bacteria that leads to the development of acne. It normally triggers an exfoliating effect the might lead to some mild peeing. This is very suitable for blackheads ( a mild form of acne and it is normally available without a prescription.
b. Salicylic acid
This kind of acid help in drying out the skin and help exfoliate it to make dead skin cells to shed off. This will help to destroy the sum-up of excess sebum with dead skin cells that from this type of acne. It is also suitable for cases of less severe acne. Just like benzoyl peroxide, it is available without a prescription.
c. Topical antibiotics
These works by killing the bacteria that trigger the development of acne. It also reduces inflammation, especially in the hair follicles. It is very advisable that one use topical antibiotics alongside oral antibiotics. Examples of topical antibiotics include erythromycin and clindamycin. Unlike salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, topical antibiotics are only available with a prescription.
d. Oral antibiotics
This is the best blackhead treatment for moderate to severe acne. The most commonly used oral antibiotics are tetracycline and erythromycin. It is very important to note that all kinds of antibiotics can cause yeast infections and should not be used along with birth control pills. Try not to use another form of birth control medication while using antibiotics. Antibiotics are prescribed kind of medication.
This is an acid originating from vitamin A. As a blackhead product, is used to help unclog the pores and reduce the bacteria that cause acne. A common type is Retin-A. This is a prescribed medication is also effective for whiteheads.
This is another best product to get rid of severe cases of acne when other medications are barely effective. Though this kind of medication works well, it can accompany many side effects such as dry skin, eyes, and lips. It can also lead to depression and birth defects. It is only available with a prescription.
There many blackheads removal masks available at home. These are the most effective and safe natural treatment to get rid of facial blackheads. In some occasions, you will also find these masks helping in reducing the signs of aging and also improve the skin texture. For sure blackheads mask always makes skin clear and glowing. The following are some of the most effective facial masks:
- Yogurt and Oatmeal facial mask
- Lemon juice facial mask
- Egg white facial mask
- Baking soda facial mask
- Papaya facial mask
For further reading about facial mask click here Best 5 Homemade facial masks for Blackheads _ THEINDIANSPOT.html
In some mild cases, mild breakouts manually using a special instrument rather than popping them physically. Popping or squeezing can lead to infections so the manual removal should be performed using a special tool called round loop extractor. The process will involve making a small opening in the plug then applying little pressure to remove the clog.
Light and Laser therapy
Laser and light therapy usually help in managing blackheads since they reduce the rate of body oil production and kill acne bacteria. The procedure involves the use of tiny beams of intense light. They are very healthy as they only deal with underneath acne without affecting or damaging the top layer of the skin.
This method involves the use of special tool that has rough surface to sand the top layer of the affected skin hence getting rid of clogs that may lead to formation of the these black headed bumps on your face
Apart from natural home products that can be used to make masks, there are other more home products that can help heal the breakouts. The effectiveness of these home remedies will solely depend on the underlying causes. The common home products are Aloe Vera, radish seeds, honey, milk, lemon juice, toothpaste, Garlic juice, aspirin paste, ginger juice, salt soaks among others.
When blackheads do not respond to the above home products, seek an appointment with your doctor for further treatment.
How to avoid or prevent them
Are facial blackheads preventable? Yes, some cases can be prevented. Although controlling their occurrence during puberty, pregnancies and periods may hard, try applying some of these techniques to reduce the chances of suffering from blackheads:
1. Wash your face regularly
Make sure you wash your face regularly, this will help in removing oil, sweat or dead skin cells build-up that may trigger blackheads. Always use a gentle cleanser that does not irritate your skin. Remember over washing your face can also lead to skin irritation.
2. Use Oil-free products
Try to use oil-free products i.e. oil-free makeup, lotions, and sunscreens to reduce your chances of them developing.
Below are more tips that can as well help prevent the formation of blackheads on your face:
- Moderate the use dairy products that contain some hormones that can stimulate oils gland leading to excess oil productions
- Try to limit the consumption of processed foods and sugary drinks that can trigger the surge in insulin level that can induce certain acne producing hormones
- Take regular shower to avoid accumulation of sebum, germs, and bacteria in your body
- Slightly exfoliate the dead layer the top layer of the skin to limit their incidences
- Get enough of rest
- Avoid much tension and stress in your life
- Do regular exercise as this is a therapy for many skin disorders
Because blackheads are just forms of mild acne, they should not worry you much. However, we must treat them in time because if they are infected, they might develop to pimples and boils that may be very severe. Again, when you are convinced that they are not responding to the homes products and over-the-counter products, please see your doctor!