Everyone may experience acne to varying degrees, but nobody wants to. Blackheads are particularly unpleasant, especially for those of fair complexion. Blackheads stand out and many people believe that they are indicative of dirty skin.
While that belief is completely untrue, blackheads are still a source of discomfort for many, even the point of impacting self esteem. That's why it's best to follow these 5 basic tips to help prevent them forming in the first place:
1. Clean problem areas regularlyNo, dirt is NOT one of the causes of blackheads (see above), but maintaining a reasonable degree of cleanliness can be helpful in preventing the buildup of dead skin cells that contribute in clogging up your hair follicles and forming blackheads.
In fact, in many minor cases, cleaning problem areas with a bit more frequency can be all that's needed to prevent most blackheads from forming. Without the dead skin cells getting into your follicles, the oils that also contribute to the formation of blackheads won't get trapped.
For others, a basic clean won't do the trick on its own. The next step to take is to exfoliate regularly. If you already exfoliate regularly, try increasing frequency by once or twice a week and see if you notice a difference. Exfoliation is basically a slightly more proactive approach to trying to keep dead skin cells away so your skin can breathe freely.
It should be noted, however, that neither regular cleaning or exfoliation will have any effect on removing existing blackheads. In fact, aggressive exfoliation may only irritate existing blackheads since it can only scratch at the surface of your skin, without digging deep to root out a blackhead as is generally required.
3. Keep the oil at bay
But dead skin cells aren't the only contributing factor that causes blackheads; excess oil in the skin is another major issue to consider. Human skin naturally creates oil and a certain level of oil production is necessary and healthy. However, if you have had blackheads and think overly-oily skin might be part of the reason, try to soak up extra oil with oil blotting papers or absorbant masks.
You should also try to limit the amount of oil your skin comes into contact with externally. Find an oil-free moisturizer and try to avoid touching problem areas with your hands. Pay attention to the ingredients of other cosmetic products you use on your skin and make sure to remove everything before you go to bed.
4. Wear loose clothing
If you find yourself getting blackheads in places other than your face, wearing looser clothing more often might be the simplest and most effective form of prevention available to you. Depending on the material, tight clothing in particular can trap heat and moisture, creating ideal conditions for blackheads to form.
Wash your clothing frequently to get rid of dead skin cells that may have stuck to them as well, but pay attention to the ingredients in your detergent well and choose one that matches the sensitivity of your skin to avoid irritation.
5. Watch your diet
Research has offered some weighty evidence that certain kinds of diet can impact the state of your skin and the likelihood of forming all kinds of acne, including blackheads. While it's best to consult a dietician and dermatologist to determine what diet is best for you, it's generally better to stay away from foods with high fat or sugar contents.
Fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, are considered overall to be a healthy choice of diet for skin problems. Drinking an adequate amount of water each day has also been linked to healthy skin.