Blackheads, or open comedones, occur when a clogged pore opens to the skin's surface, causing the familiar black color. A common acne symptom, blackheads typically go away on their own over time, although home remedies may help expedite the process. In her book “Naturally Healthy Skin,” natural beauty expert and author Stephanie Tourles recommends using an oil-absorbing clay face mask at least once a week on acne-prone areas to treat and prevent blackheads, reduce excess oil and exfoliate dead skin cells.
Combine the green cosmetic clay and corn flour in a small mixing bowl. Transfer to an airtight storage container, and store in a cool, dry place when not in use. This mixture is the base for your blackhead face mask.
Add 1 tsp. water to 1 tbsp. of the clay mask mixture in a small mixing bowl. Stir the mixture vigorously until a smooth paste is formed and the ingredients are well combined.
Stir in the essential oil until thoroughly incorporated. The University of Maryland Medical Center suggests using tea tree essential oil to combat acne because it may help reduce bacteria and lessen inflammation. In her book “The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy,” Valerie Ann Worwood recommends chamomile, lavender, juniper and patchouli essential oils for treating blackheads.
Spread the clay mixture evenly over the affected area, leave on for 15 minutes, and then rinse thoroughly with warm water. Follow with an astringent toner, or splash your face with cold water to close the pores after rinsing.
Discard any unused portion. Make a new batch for each application to ensure maximum freshness and effectiveness.
Although acne is not considered a serious medical threat, you should still consult a doctor or dermatologist if your symptoms persist or worsen. In most cases, mild acne can be treated at home, but moderate to severe cases may require medical treatment.