Blackheads are a result of clogged pores, usually from a build-up of dead skin cells and excess oil on the skin.
Whiteheads are caused by clogs in a closed pore, while blackheads are clogs in an open pore. The exposure to air causes the clog to turn black.
Thankfully, there are some simple home remedies that can help remove blackheads and even prevent them from appearing again in the future.
Fun fact: Washing your face too much can actually bring about more blackheads.
This is because blackheads are caused by oil in the skin, not dirt or debris. Skin that has been over-washed can dry out and cause sebaceous glands in the skin to produce even more oil to compensate.
According to Wellness Mama, some other causes of blackheads include:
Excess bacteria on the skin
Irritation of the pore
Hormonal changes (which can trigger excess oil production)
The best ways to reduce blackheads on the skin are to:
- Stop over-cleansing
- Use the Oil Cleansing Method. Oil cleansing removes build-up and moisturises skin so it doesn’t need to overcompensate and produce a heck of a lot of oil
- Finish cleansing with cool water (this closes pores)
- Use an apple cider vinegar toner (which helps to rebalance the skin’s pH). If you have dry skin, jojoba oil works better.
- Wear less makeup
- Use alcohol-free skin products
- Avoid using comedogenic products on skin (products which block pores). Coconut oil is a known comedogenic.
Natural Remedies for Removing Blackheads
Squeezing blackheads (while tempting) can spread bacteria and possibly result in a small infection, or produce more pimples in that area.
Instead, some effective natural remedies that help remove blackheads include:
A Honey Mask
Raw honey contains antiseptic properties that make it effective at removing dead skin cells and killing bacteria.
- Dab some raw honey onto blackheads and let it to soak in for about 10 minutes. Remove the honey with a warm, damp cloth.
- Alternatively, you can make a paste with honey and ground turmeric. Simply add a ratio of two parts honey to one part turmeric, mix that together, then dab on blackheads. Turmeric is a wonderful anti-inflammatory and may help to soothe skin and tighten pores.
5-Minute DIY Pore Strips
These pore strips by Natural Living Ideas help to clear deep-set blackheads using a mix of natural ingredients (nothing artificial or chemical-based!).
A Salty Lemon Scrub
The salt and lemon work together to help cleanse away bacteria from pores.
- Mix together one tablespoon of sea salt, 1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice and one teaspoon of water.
- Gently massage this mixture into skin for a few minutes, then rinse away with warm water. If you find your skin becomes too dry after using this scrub, moisturise with some jojoba oil at the end.
Bentonite Clay Face Mask
When wet, bentonite clay develops an electrical charge that helps draw out toxins from the body. It’s best used on normal to oily skin types, as it can dry out skin.
- Mix together (using non-metal utensils, like wood) the bentonite clay and water until a paste forms.
- Spread this paste onto skin and allow it to dry for 15-20 minutes.
- Once dry, wet the clay mask to rehydrate it. You can do this with a washcloth; rest the damp cloth gently against your skin until the clay becomes wet again.
- Once rehydrated, gently wash away the mask with the washcloth.
Green Tea Paste
Green tea can help reduce oil production on skin, and is a wonderful antioxidant.
- Mix one teaspoon of dried green tea leaves with one teaspoon of water until a paste forms.
- Gently massage the mixture into the skin for 3 minutes or so.
- Rinse away with warm water and apply some jojoba oil as a moisturiser. Do this 2-3 times a week.
Egg White Face Mask
Once dried, the mask binds to the gunk in your pores, helping to draw it out. While it may sound simple, it’s really effective.
- Separate the yolk and the whites from one egg, then whisk the whites together.
- On a clean face, spread the egg whites over any blackheads. Start with one thin layer and let it dry briefly. Then spread a second layer, let it dry, then a third layer, and let the whole thing dry completely.
- Allow this mask to dry for 15 minutes. Your skin will start to feel tight and pull a little, but this is a good sign.
- Gently scrub the egg white mask away using a warm, wet washcloth.
DIY Natural Exfoliator
Exfoliating skin is an important part of a healthy skincare routine. However, conventional exfoliators often use plastic microbeads to scrub skin (made from synthetic polymers including polyethylene, polylactic acid (PLA), polypropylene, polystyrene, or polyethylene terephthalate).
These are very harmful for the environment and can also damage your skin. Some natural alternatives that work to clean skin include:
- Nutmeg and milk
- Coffee grounds and jojoba oil
- Ground oats and water
- Honey and cinnamon
- Turmeric, chickpea flour and water
- Honey and baking soda
- Mix the ingredients together in a small bowl until a wet-sand consistency forms.
- Gently massage the mixture into skin for a few minutes, then rinse it off with warm water.
As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor before trying or using any new products. I am not a doctor. All opinions expressed are my own personal thoughts and feelings of the products mentioned. Check with your doctor or health practitioner if you are uncertain about trying out any of the products, recipes or tips mentioned in this post.
Have you tried any of these natural blackhead removal remedies before? Do you have any other tips for blackheads? Share in the comments below.
Lots of love,
Wells, Katie. (January 8, 2019). Natural Ways to Get Rid of Blackheads. Wellness Mama. Retrieved from https://wellnessmama.com/347042/blackhead-removal/
Crunchy Betty. (August 2, 2017). 5 Natural Ways to Remove Blackheads. Crunchy Betty. Retrieved from https://crunchybetty.com/remove-blackheads/
Nelson, Brooke. (January 9, 2018). The secret to getting rid of blackheads might already be in your kitchen. Business Insider. Retrieved from https://www.businessinsider.com/egg-white-masks-blackheads-2018-1?r=AU&IR=T
Wolfe, Debbie. (Updated: October 16, 2019). 5 Minute DIY Pore Strips to Remove Blackheads. Natural Living Ideas. Retrieved from https://www.naturallivingideas.com/diy-pore-strips/
Xu, Elizabeth. (Updated: February 19, 2021). 8 Home Remedies to Make Blackheads Vanish. The Healthy. Retrieved from https://www.thehealthy.com/skin-health/acne/home-remedies-blackheads/
Potter, Alison. (Updated: August 25, 2017). Microbeads in personal care products. Choice. Retrieved from https://www.choice.com.au/health-and-body/beauty-and-personal-care/skin-care-and-cosmetics/articles/microplastics-and-microbeads-in-toothpaste-facial-body-scrubs
Ranjan, Richa. (November 30). How To Get Rid of Blackheads Naturally. Femina. Retrieved from https://www.femina.in/beauty/skin/get-rid-of-blackheads-naturally-69949.html
Nall, Rachel, MSN, CRNA. (June 5, 2020). 7 natural ways to get rid of blackheads. Medical News Today. Retrieved from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/how-to-get-rid-of-blackheads
Spahn, Isabel. (December 20, 2018). Turmeric for Acne. Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/turmeric-for-acne#anti-inflammatory-properties