The Best Acne Treatments for Blackhead Removal

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As tempting as it might be to squeeze those pesky blackheads, it's critical to fight the urge. Resulting from oil and dirt clogging your pores, blackheads can be successfully treated with a range of products available from your local drugstore. Nab the right treatment and follow a few simple protocols for a smooth, blackhead-free complexion.

Exfoliate Regularly

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Scrubbing your skin a few times per week with an exfoliating cleanser is a preventative measure that removes dirt, oil and dead skin cells from the surface of your skin. This prevents these irritants from building up and settling in your pores, creating blackheads. Store-bought products that contain exfoliating beads can even help to break up blackheads that have already formed, making their appearance less visible. For an at-home solution, mix 4 teaspoons of baking soda and 1 teaspoon of warm water to create a paste that can be used to exfoliate your face.

Use Pore Cleansing Strips

To extract blackheads that are deeply embedded, adhere a pore strip to wet skin and allow it to dry. After a few minutes, peel it off to remove the dirt clogging your pores. Pore strips gently lift out the oil and dead skin cells buried in your pores. These strips can be purchased in most drug stores; be sure to follow the directions on the box for proper application and use.

Use Retinoids

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Retinoids are topical creams derived from Vitamin A. These high-strength creams help your skin shed dead cells more efficiently, which clears pores and prevents acne and blackheads from forming. Retinoids can be purchased over-the-counter in many stores, but a more powerful formula requires a prescription from your dermatologist. It is not uncommon for skin to become dry and lightly peel during your first few weeks using a retinoid.

Invest in Microdermabrasion

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For persistent blackheads that cannot be removed by using pore strips or retinoid creams, consult a dermatologist about an in-office microdermabrasion treatment. Microdermabrasion uses powerful suction and gentle mechanical abrasion to remove the outermost layers of dead skin with tiny crystal-like particles. The process helps to extract deeply embedded dirt, oil and bacteria and helps reveal a brighter, smoother complexion.