Friday, July 17, 2009

How to block out Blackheads!

My most recent question was about blackheads from Tiffany. I replied with a few questions of my own and this is what she said: (I have her permission to post this dialogue.)

"I stumbled across you blog and I thought I would ask a few questions of my own. I have never been huge into taking care of my skin {don't cringe ;) I know it's bad} until now. I just turned 30. I have TONS of black heads, and I am constantly picking at them. I wash my face every day. I don't do it so much at night {I know, that's bad too!} but it's washed every single day. What can I do to help eliminate these ugly things. They are on my nose, chin and around my lips. I HATE THEM. What would you suggest?

I do NOT smoke
I am Caucasian, to be politically correct.
i have combination skin and I use Cetaphil products on my face.
I hope that helps. I can't wait to see what you have to say. Thanks so much!! "

Tiffany,  you've asked a fabulous question regarding blackheads.  They do seem a bit pesty and are hard to get rid of.  Knowing that you don't smoke, your blackheads around your lips aren't caused by the tar from smoking, so I venture to guess you use a fatty type of lip balm or lip gloss.  Such as carmex, chapstick or some lip gloss. If you overapply the fat from the product will eventually clog your pores outlining your lips. 

 The blackheads on your chin make me wonder if you touch your chin a lot without your awareness or could be because you're combination/ t-Zone skin type (only on the forehead, nose, cheeks and chin forming an invisible lower case t).  Blackheads in the nose is very, very common, and can also spread into the cheek area, but that isn't as common, again the t-Zone for the cheek problem.

Cetaphil is a wonderful product.  That's great you wash your face in the morning.  Something to think about though, you know the grimy feeling your teeth have at the end of the night, your face is the same way.  All day it's been exposed dust, pollution, sweat, free radicals and sun damage.  If you knew your face was as filthy as your teeth are at the end of the night, you'd be washing your face just as faithfully as you brush your teeth.

By not washing your face at night you're  leaving all the day's dirt and dead skin cells get absorbed back into your skin.  You see Tiffany, at night is when the skin gets to rejuvenate.  Skin is the largest organ and it gets fed when you're sleeping.  Every day your skin is sluffing hundreds of skin cells, but if not washed away then stay in your pores and over time those pores will expand to accommodate the dirt collection you're accruing.  The oil and dirt eventually turn dark or "black" due to exposure to the air, it oxidizes.  

What I recommend is wash your face at night.  No exceptions. Continue with your Cetaphil and add an exfoliating scrub and use it three times a week.  I like the Neutrogena Facial Scrub that mimics a microdermabrasion.  Works great.  My favorite skincare line is ROC.  I love it and it's at Walgreens, CVS, Walmart...etc.  Use products that contain antioxidants, or an alpha hydroxy.  Your greatest bet is to get a facial and have your pores cleaned out.  Use a moisturizer every morning.  It creates a barrier between your face and the environment which helps your skin stay protected better.  You won't get rid of every single blackhead, but they will decrease significantly by following the few suggestions I've stated above.  

Okay Tiffany, this should be a springboard for you.  I hope to have not overwhelmed you.  Please get back to me and the other readers in two week's time and let us know how your skin has responded.  We all look forward to hearing your progress!!

Thanks again, 

The Wax Doll


  1. Tiffany's emailed reply to this posting.

    "That totally made sense!! I was a dental assistant for 5 years. I brush my teeth faithfully morning and night, so using that as a comparison hit home!! I for sure will be washing my face every night. I will let you know how it's going."

  2. Where do you recommend going for a reasonably priced facial?