Blackheads are a bane to our skin's existence. They litter the surface of our otherwise clear complexion, making it look dirty and greasy. These little dots are usually caused by hair follicles that get clogged with grime, dirt, dead skin cells, sebum and germs - resulting in a kind of plug. They're black because any excess oil in the pores goes through a process of oxidation. This is most common on the cheeks and, as you've probably noticed, the nose. However, they can - and will - pop up anywhere.
But you don't have to live with them, or buy all kinds of chemicals and sticky bandages that don't always work. You can solve your blackhead problem right at home, and here are six easy way to do so.
This is one of the best, safest and fastest ways to remove blackheads. This works by loosening them up, so they come out of your skin naturally. This is the recommended first step when getting rid of blackheads. All you need is a pot, four cups worth of water, a lemon rind to put in the pot and a large towel.
Boil the water and remove the pot from the stove before it starts steaming, to avoid getting a nasty burn. Place the pot on a flat surface and move your face carefully over the pot (without touching it, of course). Cover your head with the towel - so the steam stays around your face - and stay that way for about 3 to 5 minutes. After the allotted time has passed, wash your face with a mild cleanser and pat it until it's dry. You'll find that many of your blackheads have come out of your enlarged pores.
Egg White Mask
Egg whites help tighten our pores so blackheads don't appear to begin with. However, they also help treat your current black intruders. Mix some honey and lemon juice with the egg white. Lemons are natural astringents and honey is naturally antibacterial. The addition will create a deeper level of cleaning to the already powerful effect of the egg white. This combination will make your skin tighter, provide deeper cleaning of your pores and get rid of excess oil on your face. It will also slough off dead skin cells.
Mix 1 teaspoon of honey, 1 egg white and a 1/4 teaspoon of lemon juice. Remember not to exceed this amount of lemon juice as too much can cause skin irritation and redness.
Start with the steaming session I proposed in the previous suggestion. This will open up the pores, loosen some of the blackheads already and allow the ingredients in this mix to really get deep into the pores for cleaning. Then pat your skin dry, apply the mask to it in a circular motion and allow it to stay for 15 minutes. It may feel tight but that is normal.
After 15 minutes, rinse it off with warm water and then use cold water to close the pores up. Pat your skin dry again and apply a bit of moisturizer to return some of the moisture that you lost.
Baking Soda Facial Scrub
Baking soda is used for many things. It is also a natural exfoliator that can be used to get rid of impurities, deeply cleanse our pores and remove dead skin.
Take 1 tablespoon of baking soda and mix it with 3 teaspoons of (clean) water and a 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice. You'll know the mix is ready when the texture becomes a little thicker than milk. Clean your hands thoroughly and use a circular motion to gently scrub your face. Make sure you get it deep into the pores. Then apply warm water to wash it away, pat your skin dry and apply moisturizer.
As many know, honey is both an antiseptic and an antibacterial substance. As such, it can cleanse your skin from the dirt and oil that cause blackheads. The stickiness of the honey actually helps it cling to the gunk in your pores and draw it out.
All you'll need is 1 tablespoon of organic honey and about 2 minutes to wash it off. Use the circular motion we discussed to gently scrub your face, paying extra attention to areas with many blackheads. Then wash it all away with warm water and pat your face dry.
Green Tea Face Mask
Green tea has an incredibly high antioxidant content. They purify the skin, allowing the blackheads to come out.
Mix together 3 teaspoons of green tea, 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and 1/2 a teaspoon of lemon juice. Apply this mask to your skin, spreading it thickest on the areas where most of the blackheads are. Let the mask stay for about 15 minutes, then use warm water to rinse your face. Pat it dry and wash with cold water to close the pores before patting it dry again.
Strawberry Face Scrub
Strawberries are full of a substance called 'alpha hydroxy acid'. These acids are wonderful for removing blackheads because they control oil production, as well as rid your face of dead skin. This scrub not only eliminates your current blackheads but prevents new ones from forming.
Create a scrub mask with 1 teaspoon of honey, 3 ripe strawberries and 1/2 a teaspoon of lemon juice. For the next 3 minutes, gently scrub your facial skin in a circular motion, then rinse it away with warm water, pat, and then rinse again with cold water and pat to dry.