Blackheads are little blemishes on the skin caused by clogged hair follicles. Blackheads are so-called because the surface of these pimples appears dark or black.
Blackheads are most common on the face, especially on the nose, chin, and forehead. But they can also form on the back, chest, neck, arms, and shoulders, among other places.
When a clog or plug forms in the opening of your skin's hair follicles, blackheads form. Each follicle contains one hair as well as an oil-producing sebaceous gland.
When the skin's sebaceous glands create too much oil, it combines with dead skin cells and plugs hair follicles, resulting in the creation of blackheads.
The Propionibacterium acnes bacteria is a natural resident of the skin, but when it accumulates in large quantities, it can cause inflammation and lead to the formation of blackheads.
When dead skin cells don't shed regularly, they can accumulate on the surface of the skin and mix with oils, leading to the formation of blackheads.
Hormonal changes during puberty, menstruation, or while taking certain medications can cause an increase in oil production, contributing to the formation of blackheads.
While dirt on the skin does not directly cause blackheads, it is crucial to clean the skin gently twice a day using a mild cleanser and apply a moisturiser. Also, one should avoid oily and heavy products that could worsen the condition.
Cleansers with salicylic acid help break down oil in pores. Daily use may irritate the skin, so use it only a few times a week.
Exfoliating scrubs remove dead skin cells that contribute to blackheads. Use a gentle scrub on wet skin once a week.
Retinoid creams help decrease oil production and improve skin appearance. Available both over the counter and by prescription.
Brushes help remove dead skin cells and prevent pore blockage. They can be used with cleansers.
Masks draw out impurities and reduce oiliness. Use it once a week, but avoid it if the skin becomes irritated.
Although the link between diet and skin health is unproven, a balanced diet can benefit overall health. High glycemic load, low zinc levels, and dairy may contribute to acne.