How to Get Rid of Blackheads—5 Tips for Guys
Struggling to get rid of blackheads? Try these five expert tips to help banish blackheads for good.
As one of the mildest forms of acne, blackheads generally aren’t too difficult to treat. Even so, they can be frustrating in their own special way.
A lot of guys struggle with blackheads for two simple reasons: One, their pores are larger and, thus, trap more oil and debris; and two, their skin tends to be oilier, which doesn’t help the situation.
While you might be tempted to squeeze all your blackheads to get the dark gunk out of your pores, resist the urge. There are far safer and more efficient ways of treating your pesky blackheads.
Here are three things you should know about blackheads:
- Though they may seem harmless, blackheads can have a negative impact on a guy’s self-esteem.
- The key to getting rid of blackheads is by getting on a regular skin care routine.
- Avoiding pore-blocking oils and using Salicylic Acid treatments can improve the appearance of blackheads.
The Problem with Blackheads
While they may be relatively harmless, blackheads are still a form of acne that can take its toll on a guy’s self-esteem. According to a 2004 study published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, people with acne have an increased risk of anxiety and depression, regardless of acne severity (see claim: “Irrespective of the degree of severity, patients with acne are at increased risk for anxiety and depression compared to the normal population.”)
Another problem with blackheads is their potential to turn into severe types of acne that are deep and painful. By treating your blackheads early, you can save yourself a lot of frustration by avoiding the dreaded cystic acne.
5 Tips to Get Rid of Blackheads
The most effective way to eliminate stubborn blackheads is to establish a skin care routine and stick to it. Once you’ve accomplished that, follow these expert tips for getting rid of blackheads:
Tip #1: Do Not Squeeze Your Blackheads
One of the worst things you can do to your blackheads—or any type of acne, for that matter—is to squeeze or pop them. This will only inflame the hair follicle and make your skin look worse.
Besides, squeezing and popping your pimples can result in acne scars that can end up being permanent. Your best bet is to leave your face alone, no matter how tempting it may be to pop your blackheads.
Tip #2: Avoid Products with Comedogenic Oils
If you struggle with acne-prone skin, there is a long list of skin care ingredients you should avoid. At the top of this list are comedogenic oils or oils that block the pores (check out our helpful skin care glossary for the definition).
Comedogenic oils, such as coconut oil, have a strong tendency to clog pores and can make blackheads worse. If you’re trying to keep your pores free of debris, stick to low comedogenic oils such as Jojoba Oil and Kukui Nut Oil.
Tip #3: Use a Gentle Exfoliator
Exfoliating with a gentle face scrub once or twice a week can help slough off dead skin cells that plug the hair follicles in your skin and cause blackheads. Just be careful not to scrub too much or too hard, as this can make your blackheads worse.
Tip #4: Treat Blackheads with Salicylic Acid
When your blackheads are being stubborn, you may need to bring out the heavy hitters. We’re talking specifically about Salicylic Acid, a beta-hydroxy acid (BHA) derived from the bark of a willow tree.
Salicylic Acid is particularly effective for guys because it can penetrate deep into their thick skin, exfoliating dead skin cells and eliminating blackheads. The research doesn’t lie. According to a 2018 study published in Biomedical Dermatology, acne patients reduced nearly 89 percent of their comedones after just six sessions with a Salicylic Acid peel (see claim: “After six sessions with commercially available SA peel, reduction in average number of comedones was 88.45% (P = 0.002)…”)
Tip #5: Don’t Skip Your Moisturizer
Many guys stop using their moisturizer once their blackheads start getting out of control. Though it may sound counterintuitive, applying a daily moisturizer to your face may be key to getting rid of blackheads.
When you stop using your moisturizer, your skin produces more oil to compensate for the sudden loss of moisture. This can lead to more acne breakouts, especially blackheads and whiteheads.
Banishing Blackheads for Good
For some guys, blackheads can be particularly stubborn. If your regular skin care system just isn’t getting the job done, consider switching to an acne treatment system that will keep your blackheads at bay. After just a few weeks, you should start to see a noticeable improvement in your skin.