Acne treatment Acne treatment

Dermatological Treatments for Blackhead Removal

Dermatological Treatments for Blackhead Removal Dermatological Treatments for Blackhead Removal

A blackhead, also known as a comedone, is a form of acne that can occur anywhere on the body in proximity to a sebaceous gland. Sebaceous glands produce an oil called sebum. When excess sebum is produced and combines with sloughed skin cells in a hair follicle, a soft plug can form called a comedone. When the comedone forms deep inside the follicle, it is called a whitehead. When the comedone forms towards the outer layers of skin and is exposed to the outside air, it oxidizes and creates a blackhead. When blackheads occur it is important not to try to squeeze or extract it yourself. Instead, you should leave the comedone alone, or talk to your dermatologist about treatment options.

Salicylic Acid

For mild comedones, your dermatologist may recommend an over-the-counter product called salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is a keratolytic substance. This means that it can break down a protein called keratin. The skin cells that make up a comedone are largely made up of keratin. According to the New Zealand Dermatological Society, as the salicylic acid breaks down the keratin, it also breaks up the blackhead, clearing the follicle.

Benzoyl Peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide may also be reccomended or prescribed by your dermatologist for blackheads. Benzoyl peroxide works in two ways on blackheads. First, it removes dead skin cells from the follicles, helping to reduce the acne plug. Benzyol peroxide also kills off the acne-related bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes), which can progress a blackhead into more serious cases of acne such as pustules, cysts or nodules.


Your dermatologist may also prescribe a topical retinoid, such as adapalene, tazarotene or tretinoin. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, retinoids help treat blackheads and other forms of acne by unclogging pores and preventing whiteheads and blackheads from forming in the future. Due to potentially serious side effects, it is not recommended that women who are pregnant use topical retinoids for blackheads.


Your dermatologist may also manually extract blackheads from your face. To remove a blackhead your dermatologist will use a surgical tool to extract the blackhead from your skin tissue. Your dermatologist may also combine manual extraction with a chemical peel to help in the extraction process. Chemical peels use specialized chemicals (such as hydroxy acids) to detach the outer layer of dead skin cells from the body so that they can peel away from new cells beneath.

Related Articles

Removing Blackheads With Wax
Overview Acne and blackheads affect an estimated 17 million men and women in the United States, acco...
How to Remove Blackheads Instantly
Overview Blackheads are a type of acne known as open comedones. Contrary to popular belief that acne...
How Do I Make My Own Nose Strips to Remove Blackheads?
Overview If your nose is covered in small black specks even after you wash your face, you have black...
Blackhead Removal
Overview Blackheads refer to a type of acne also known as open comedones. Blackheads occur when oil ...
Blackhead Removal Antibiotics
Overview Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting between 40 million a...
How to Remove Blackheads From the Back
Overview Blackheads on the back are not only unsightly, but can become irritated if a shirt or backp...

Comment «Dermatological Treatments for Blackhead Removal»