Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

How to Stop Blackheads

How to Stop Blackheads

Overview

Blackheads form when the oil and dead skin cells inside the pore oxidizes and turns black or brown. Bacteria are also found in blackhead pimples. While a blackhead can resemble dirt, it’s actually no different than a whitehead, except that the surface of the pore is open. Blackheads linger much longer than other pimples because the contents of the pore drain slowly.

Step 1

Wash your face with a gentle face wash. Be sure to remove all residues of makeup and moisturizer. You will also be washing away the oils on the surface of your skin that could prevent topical acne medications from penetrating.

Step 2

Apply a generous amount of 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide to the areas where you most often break out. Benzoyl peroxide oxygenates the skin, meaning that it allows oxygen to penetrate pores and hair follicles. The bacteria that cause blackheads and other pimples to form cannot live in an oxygenated environment. Benzoyl peroxide will also dry the top layers of skin and allow them to peel, further preventing pores from clogging.

Step 3

Moisturize your skin after using benzoyl peroxide. This topical medication can be very drying. Using an oil-free moisturizer will improve the appearance of your skin if it begins to flake.

Step 4

Wash your face before bed. The American Academy of Dermatology suggests that washing your face twice a day is sufficient.

Step 5

Talk to your doctor about using a prescription vitamin A treatment. Medications in this category, explains Audrey Kunin, M.D., assistant clinical instructor of dermatology at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, include Retin A, Retin-A Micro Gel, Tazorac, Ativa and Differen. These medications help loosen the choked pores that cause blackheads. They also medicinally peel the raised edge of the pore.

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