For a lot of people just the thought of blackheads sends shudders down their spine. And if you suffer with them on a regular basis then you know exactly how annoying and frustrating they can be.
It’s like you’re fighting a constant battle and how often has it happened that you get a breakout just before a big day out. Those frantic moments to try and get rid of them on time while trying not to leave you skin marked and full of red blotches.
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If this sounds all too familiar then you have probably been fighting this battle alone for far too long. You’ve probably also picked up some random products that line the shelves at drug stores only to end up throwing them out. While there are plenty of products out there, most of them tend to have one thing I common: they tend to just camouflage the effects.
To help you find the ideal product once and for all, we have put together this guide which contains 5 of the most effective products for removing and preventing blackheads. You’ll find out exactly how they work and why they do such a great job at making your life easier.
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Table of Contents
- What Causes Blackheads
- Best Facemasks and Cleansers for Blackheads
- Best Scrubs for Blackheads
- Best Blackhead Strips
- 11. Aveeno Daily Blackhead Cleansing Pads
- 12. Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads
- 13. Noxzema Ultimate Clear Pads Anti-Blemish
- 14. Biore Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore Strips
- 15. OXY Maximum Action Rapid 3-In-1 Treatment Pads
- 16. Clearasil Ultra Acne Medication Rapid Action Pads
- New Addition: Biore Deep Cleansing Pore Strips Ultra
- Over to You
What Causes Blackheads
Blackheads occur when a clog forms inside your hair follicles giving rise to oil and dead cell buildup inside your skin. This oil buildup is actually sebum, a protective oily substance produced by the sebaceous glands in the skin. These develop into a bump giving you horrible blackheads.
Some of the basic causes of blackheads include the following:
- Blocking or clogging of pores by cosmetic products.
- Heavy sweating due to high humidity or pollution.
- Health conditions such as stress, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
- Using steroid-based drugs such as the corticosteroids.
Always use non-comedogenic cosmetic products and visit a doctor if you are suffering from blackheads because of before mentioned health conditions. Below is a list of best products for blackheads:
Best Facemasks and Cleansers for Blackheads
Facemasks and cleansers can work wonders for your blackheads if applied in the right manner. A cleanser acts as an emulsifier and helps in removing dead skin cells, excess sebum and make-up traces from your skin.
Face masks on the other hand, refines skin pores from the metabolic wastes, increases skin hydration, diminishes fine lines and gives you an even skin tone. This not only helps in clearing blackheads but also prevents future blackhead aggravation.
Misumi’s AHA 10% Skin Perfecting Cleanser is an excellent antidote for banishing blackheads. This product uses Glycolic Acid as the active ingredient. Glycolic Acid is one of the best exfoliators out there, due to the minuscule size of its molecules. The tiny size of the molecules enables it to penetrate deeply into the skin to remove dead skin cells, impurities, and excess oil that clog up the pores and hair follicles that cause blackheads.
Suitable for Normal, Acne-prone, and oily skin
- Contains Glycolic Acid, which is one of the best and most powerful exfoliating ingredients
- Provides a deep and refreshing cleanse
- Deals with blackheads at the root of the problem
- Contains wonderful natural ingredients with soothing and acne-fighting properties such as Seaweed Extract, Rosehip Oil, Glycerin, Lemon, Grapefruit, and Chamomile
- Generous product size
- 60 Day Money Back Guarantee
- Doesn’t offer a complete acne-fighting kit. You have to buy products individually
For maximum effects and fastest results, pair the Skin Perfecting Cleanser with their Pore Purifying Toner. The two work miracles together. They are the ultimate blackhead fighting duo. The toner will tighten and shrink your pores, control oily skin, and add a layer of protection to your skin.
Exposed Clarifying Mask efficiently removes impurities and excess oil from your skin and prevents blackheads and pimples. It is recommended to use this mask 1-2 times per week to eliminate blackheads and acne.
- This clarifying mask contains Sulfur as its active ingredient and Sulfur kills the bacteria and clears clogged pores reducing your blackheads.
- It also contains Resorcinol as its active ingredient that helps your skin to rid of rough, scaly and hardened cells.
- The presence of Glycerin helps in oil control and fills your pores reducing the chances of sebum to accumulate in it.
- It includes charcoal powder which has a porous nature that provides it an incredible absorption rate and hence, it easily sucks out all the impurities from your pores.
- Bentonite clay is used in this mask; when it comes in contact with water it becomes negatively charged and detoxifies your skin.
- This face mask might overly dry your skin making your sebaceous glands produce more sebum than normal as a counter function resulting in more oily skin.
- In very rare cases this product has caused breakouts.
Pure Body Naturals Dead Sea Mud Mask is formulated using Dead Sea Mud that is known to be an ancient skin care solution due to its richness in salts and minerals.
- The Dead Sea Mud tightens pores and removes toxins from your skin to help drive inessential minerals such as sodium, chloride, magnesium, potassium, iron and calcium.
- It contains skin nourishment oils including Jojoba Seed Oil, Shea Butter Extract, Calendula Flower Oil and Sunflower Seed Oil.
- The presence of Allantoin helps in loosening dead skin and holds anti-inflammatory properties that soothe your skin and relieve dryness.
- It includes anti-oxidants such as Vitamin E, Beeswax and Aloe Vera Extract.
- Since this formula contains alcohol this might cause skin sensitivity.
- If you have oily skin this might give you breakouts due to the abundance of essential oils in this mask.
Murad Blackhead and Pore Cleaning Duo is a two-step skin cleaning regimen that features Oxidation Reversal Complex to provide you a blackhead free skin!
- The blackhead remover contains bentonite clay that extracts blackheads from your skin due to its immense detoxification power.
- It also includes various herbal extracts that help in eliminating your blackheads without being harsh on your skin.
- The presence of Benzoic Acid in the blackhead remover provides protection from bacteria that reduces your chances of any breakouts.
- The Pore Refining Sealer comprises mainly of Salicylic Acid that helps in cell turnover and eliminates all the oil and dirt buildup from your pores.
- The amino acids in the pore refining sealer stimulate the production of collagen and elastin that provide you a younger and radiant skin.
- It is alcohol-free.
- The blackhead remover contains a huge amount of preservatives that might irritate your sensitive skin.
- It also includes Parfum and might not be suitable if you have sensitive skin.
Biore Warming Anti-Blackhead Cleanser is a self-heating formula that clears your skin from blackheads and provides you a soothing effect.
- This cleanser helps in treating blemishes and specifically targets blackheads due to the Salicylic Acid present in it.
- It removes all the excess oil and bacteria trapped in the pores of your skin.
- The presence of cellulose in this cleanser maintains the hydration of your skin and balances skin moisture level.
- It consists of zeolite that readily absorbs, stores and neutralizes toxins present on your skin.
- This is a non-comedogenic product.
- It contains BHT that is used as an anti-oxidant that improves the appearance of your skin.
- This cleanser contains alcohol which might be abrasive for your skin.
- It contains fragrance and might not be suitable for you if your skin is allergic to Parfum.
Click here for an in-depth list of tried-and-true blackhead peel-off masks.
Best Scrubs for Blackheads
Scrubs have always been a significant part of a healthy skin care regimen. Scrubs gently exfoliate the skin. Exfoliation is the removal of dry and dull skin that has formed due to the dead cell layer on the surface of the epidermis. This exfoliation leads to unclogging of pores and minimize the appearance of your pores unveiling a radiant skin.
The effective way of applying a scrub includes:
- Dampen the skin with luke warm water to soften skin as it is ideal for exfoliation.
- Place a small amount of scrub on your fingers and massage in circular motions creating a fine lather.
- Gently rinse off with cold water and follow with a moisturizer after drying.
Caution: Do not scrub with harsh strokes as it might irritate your skin or cause an allergic effect.
6. Exposed Skin Care Microderm Scrub for Blackheads
Exposed Skin Care Microderm Scrub uses micro-sized corundum crystals to banish hard-to-go blackheads and leaves your skin radiant and smooth.
- This scrub comprises Chamomile extract that acts as an anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-septic and anti-inflammatory agent that prevents your skin from getting blemishes and blackheads.
- Aluminum Oxide being the major component in unclogging pores promotes exfoliation and resurfacing of the skin, eliminating blackheads.
- Aloe Vera extract added in this scrub provides you anti-inflammatory properties and soothes your skin by neutralizing the effect of other potentially harsh ingredients.
- This scrub is rich in anti-oxidants that include Sun flower seed oil, Vitamin E, mango seed butter and grape seed oil.
- It is free from alcohol and does not contain synthetic fragrances.
- This Microderm Scrub has no reported side effects except that it is quite expensive. But the price is worth it.
7. Neutrogena Blackhead Eliminating Daily Scrub
Neutrogena Blackhead Eliminating Daily Scrub seems to be the best blackhead remover when it comes to the scrub family as it specifically targets blackheads.
- This scrub contains Salicylic Acid that causes your skin to shed dead cells and regenerates them eliminating blackheads.
- This scrub comprises Cellulose that helps in maintaining the right moisture level and repairs skin tissues making this product suitable for dry skin.
- It contains Glycerin that effectively controls oiliness and diminishes your whiteheads and blemishes alongside providing a soothing effect.
- This scrub is safe to apply daily and no extra topical acne medication is needed.
- It is paraben-free.
- This scrub contains Sodium Hydroxide and Iron oxides that are known irritants and are not safe for sensitive skin.
- It contains alcohol and fragrances that might be abrasive for your skin.
- If you have dry skin this scrub might further dry it resulting in poor blackhead extraction.
8. Garnier Blackhead Eliminating Scrub for Oily Skin
Garnier Clean+Blackhead Eliminating Scrub is a light-weight gel that draws out blackheads with its gentle micro beads after deeply penetrating your pores revealing a clearer skin.
- Combined with the power of charcoal this scrub plucks out all your blackheads giving you a clean refreshing skin.
- It contains Salicylic Acid as an active ingredient that helps in unclogging pores and stimulating the cell turnover process to get rid of dead cells.
- Since, it is essenced with Citric Acid it promotes collagen elastin production to regenerate your skin and to give it a smoother texture.
- It also treats acne and prevents future blackheads and break outs.
- It is alcohol-free and does not contain paraben.
- It contains fragrance so it might be abrasive on your skin if you are allergic to Parfum.
- If dryness or bothersome peeling occurs reduce the frequency of application.
9. Clean & Clear Blackhead Eraser Face Scrub
Clean and Clear Blackhead Eraser Face Scrub is specifically designed to unclog your pores and claims to diminish your blackheads and revitalize your skin within two days.
- Clean & Clear Scrub contains 2% Salicylic Acid that effectively eliminates blackheads and provides relief from acne.
- The Microcrystalline wax beads gently exfoliate your skin and remove the dirt and sebum trapped in your pores.
- It contains Jojoba Esters that acts as an emollient and hydrates your skin to keep you away from dryness and irritation.
- It is a non-comedogenic product and does not make your skin feel greasy.
- The massaging time for this scrub is 20-30 seconds which means it has a lesser application time then other scrubs.
- Since this scrub contains alcohol it might cause irritation and dryness if you have sensitive skin.
- It does not show efficient results when applied on oily skin because the hydrating agents in this scrub neutralize the effect of alcohol that reduces oiliness.
- It contains Fragrance and might cause skin sensitivity.
10. St. Ives Acne Control Apricot Scrub
- This Apricot Scrub contains Salicylic Acid for the treatment of acne and blemishes through its cell loosening capability.
- It comprises of all the natural exfoliants to remove dead cells from your skin, unblock pores and wipe out all the excess sebum and oil.
- It includes kernel meal from dried corn that penetrates your skin and promotes new cell growth for improved complexion.
- The walnut shell powder acts as a lightening agent and gives your skin a natural glow.
- It contains Glycerin to combat the dry effect persisting due to exfoliation as it attracts moisture.
- It includes alcohol as an inactive ingredient but it might pose a threat to your sensitive skin.
- It also contains fragrance that might overly dry your skin.
- Since it contains Glycerin your skin might run oily sometime after application.
Best Blackhead Strips
Although it’s true that blackhead strips effectively remove blackheads from your skin they do not prevent them from happening again.
According to Dr. Jessica Wu, “The popular blackhead removers that look a bit like nose bandages do work. When you pull off the strip, you’re removing the top layers of dead skin cells as well as oxidized (black) oil. They won’t prevent blackheads because they have nothing to do with your skin’s oil production, but they can temporarily make your pores look smaller.”
Blackhead strips and pads help a great deal if you want to get rid of blackheads instantly. But the working of the strip depends more on how you apply it. The right application method includes:
- Wash and clean the area of application.
- Take 2-3 minutes steam to open up your pores.
- Wet your skin to set the grip of the pore strip and press the strip on your skin.
- Immediately pull the strip.
Caution: Make sure you set a perfect crease while pressing the strip otherwise it won’t be effective and will irritate your skin.
While choosing cleansing pads also ensure that they contain Salicylic Acid or any Alpha-Hydroxy or Beta-Hydroxy acids as they help you in the prevention of blackheads and do not irritate your skin.
11. Aveeno Daily Blackhead Cleansing Pads
Aveeno Clear Complexion Cleansing Pads are dual-textured pads pre-moistened with moisture-rich soy extracts. Gently removes the blackheads and blemishes without over-drying your skin.
- Aveeno Cleansing Pads are essenced with Salicylic Acid that makes the blackhead extraction easier due to its cell turnover phenomena and prevents future blemishes.
- It uses Citric Acid that promotes skin peeling and also prevents over-drying.
- Glycerin included prevents the pores from drying and irritation after the peeling of skin.
- It provides an instant face lift due to the presence of moisture-rich soy extract.
- It is a non-comedogenic, alcohol-free and hypoallergenic formula.
- Gentle enough for daily use and the jar lasts a month.
- It contains parabens and might cause you redness and itching if you are allergic to it.
- It includes fragrance and cause irritation or peeling of skin. Reduce application if bothersome peeling occurs.
12. Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads
Nib+Fab Glycolic Fix Daily Cleansing Pads are exfoliating facial pads that retexture your skin with the power of Glycolic Acid and reveal a younger-looking clearer skin.
- These cleansing pads are formulated with Glycolic Acid that removes dead skin cells and promotes a healthy skin, reducing your chances of developing blackheads.
- The moisturizing formula of Hyaluronic Acid helps in maintaining skin hydration levels and protects from dryness.
- It is fused with Witch Hazel Extract that perfectly tones your skin.
- The presence of Glycerin treats all the conditions caused by oiliness and also prevents blackheads and whiteheads.
- It contains soothing blue daisy essence that shows anti-inflammatory properties and calms all the tightness and irritation.
- These pads are immersed in alcohol and there are chances of causing irritation and redness.
- It contains fragrance that might be abrasive for your skin.
13. Noxzema Ultimate Clear Pads Anti-Blemish
Noxzema Ultimate Anti-Blemish pads detoxify pores by plunging out excess oil along with stubborn blackheads alongside preventing future blemishes and break outs.
- These Anti-Blemish Pads contain salicylic Acid as their active ingredient that help in the shedding of dead cells clearing your skin pores.
- The presence of Salicylic Acid also provides protection from the P.acnes bacteria and prevents any blemishes.
- It contains Limonene (a naturally occurring substance in the rind of Citrus Fruit) that possesses strong anti-oxidant benefits and also calms your skin.
- The chemical component Sodium Benzoate helps in controlling oil levels that balance the sebum production and reduce your chances of getting blackheads again.
- It also helps in clearing your acne as well as removing blackheads.
- When Limonene gets oxidized due to sun exposure it has a tendency of acting as a skin irritant, hence, these Anti-Blemish Pads need to be stored at a right temperature.
- It contains fragrance and different synthetic aromas that include Cinnamal, Linalool and Geraniol.
- It is not alcohol-free and might be abrasive for sensitive skin.
14. Biore Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore Strips
Biore Deep Cleansing Charcoal Pore Strips instantly lock on the pores and penetrate into your skin to draw out the blackheads along with all the sebum and dirt buildup.
- These strips are formulated with Charcoal powder which holds a great tendency to absorb blackheads and open clogged pores.
- Silica is a skin conditioning agent and maintains the moisture level of your skin after the removal of blackheads.
- It contains Glycerin which acts as a humectant and deals with the dryness caused due to the application of the strips and provides a soothing effect.
- The presence of menthol gives a refreshing and cooling effect.
- It is alcohol-free and does not contain fragrance.
- Forceful removal of the strips might cause skin abrasions.
- If applied on excessively dry skin severe irritation might occur.
15. OXY Maximum Action Rapid 3-In-1 Treatment Pads
OXY Maximum Action Rapid Treatment Pads provide 3-in-1 Treatment that unblocks your pores, prevents blemishes and provides you a clearer and smother complexion.
- These pads are essenced with Salicylic Acid that fights acne and prevent future blemishes.
- Salicylic Acid also unclogs pores as it stimulates the shedding of dead skin cells eliminating the blackheads and whiteheads from the roots.
- It includes Allantoin that stimulates cell turnover and prevents dry, itchy and irritated skin.
- The Phytic Acid reverses damage to your skin and diminishes signs of aging. It is also great for sensitive skin.
- Jojoba Wax is an anti-oxidant that tames inflammation and controls acne break outs. It readily absorbs all the excess oil from your skin.
- Might cause bothersome peeling of the skin so avoid use if you have dry skin.
- It contains alcohol and fragrance which might irritate your sensitive skin.
16. Clearasil Ultra Acne Medication Rapid Action Pads
Clearasil Ultra Acne Medication Rapid Action Pads are formulated to provide maximum-strength against acne and blackheads and claims to visibly reduce your pimple size in as little as four hours.
- Clearasil Pads open up blocked pores which lead to blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and acne with the help of Salicylic Acid.
- It gently cleanses and exfoliates to remove any dirt or bacteria building up inside your skin after eliminating blackheads.
- It is drenched with Glycerin that locks moisture in your skin after exfoliation and curbs dryness.
- It includes essential oils from Lavendar, Helichrysum and Cistus Monspeliensis Extract that act as anti-inflammatory agents.
- It is paraben-free.
- It contains denatured alcohol that might develop a rash on your skin.
- These medicated pads are fragrant and might irritate your sensitive skin.
New Addition: Biore Deep Cleansing Pore Strips Ultra
- Fused with Witch Hazel extract that acts as an astringent these strips tighten your pores for making the extraction of blackheads easier.
- It includes Tea Tree oil which is efficient in removing blackheads from the roots and its anti-bacterial properties eliminate the chances of having break outs and blackheads in future.
- It uses Glycerin to deal with oiliness and sebum build-up inside your skin without making your skin dry.
- Menthol provides a refreshing effect, purifies and tightens pores to reduce chances of future blackheads and whiteheads.
- Menthol also soothes itchiness and redness that might occur due to forceful removal of these strips.
- These Pore Strips come in a longer size than others to provide you twice the cleansing and to adapt according to your need.
- These strips might be aggressive for skin that is sensitive to bandages or peel-off masks.
- Using these strips more than once in three days might cause irritation on your skin.
Over to You
How much do you agree with this list of the best products for blackheads? Do you want some good product you’ve used to be included in it? What have been your struggles in blackhead removal? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!