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Blackheads: Causes + Solutions

Blackheads: causes and solutions / congestion / exfoliation / green beauty

So what are blackheads?

Blackheads may make skin look dirty, but they are unrelated to dirt. They are actually created before the oils in your skin have even reached the other layer!

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 The Causes: Where do they come from?
Blackheads are formed when:
  1. hormones cause too much oil to be produced
  2. dead skin cells get in the way of oil trying to exit the pore
  3. the pore is impaired or misshapen
 These 3 things cause the exit where oil leaves the pore, to be blocked… and voila! A clog is created! As this clog nears the surface of the skin, the mixture of oil and debris oxidizes and turns, you guessed it: black.
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So what can we do to get rid of them?

  • You cannot scrub away blackheads, at least not completely. Using a topical scrub removes the top portion of the blackhead, but does nothing to address the underlying cause, so they’re back again before too long.
  • The best way to deal with blackheads is to combine several strategies to address all the reasons that they crop up!
    • Remember from the info we learned above, that they come from hormones causing too much oil (sebum), a build-up of dead skin cells, and damaged or misshapen pores. 
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The Solutions: Strategies to avoid & clear up blackheads

Addressing Cause #1: Hormones & excess Oil

Hydrate + moisturize to balance your skin. When these two steps are skipped, your body tries to make up for the lack of balance with more oil.

  • Start taking internal actions to balance your hormones. Check out this post, this post, and this post for a detailed plan of action.

Addressing Cause #2: Build up of dead skin cells

Daily Detox Facial Moisturizer made with natural ingredients / green beauty / eco beauty / oily skin / facial primer

Check out this detailed post on tackling congestion.

  • Let your makeup do some work: wear a primer with natural detoxifying clays.
  • Introduce your skin to a detoxing clay mask and follow up with a facial cleanser that has fruit enzymes (like this one or this one). This process will pull up some of those clogs to the surface of your skin where they can be easily washed off thanks to those fruit enzymes.
  • Switch to mineral makeup – it’s less likely to enter and clog your pores (and if it ever does enter the pore, it’s easily pushed out)
  • Change your pillowcase frequently – oils from your hair & face, plus dead skin cells and other debris hang out on your pillow case and that’s just asking for problems! Keep your pillowcase clean so your face can stay clear!

Addressing Cause #3: Impaired or misshapen pore

  • This one is the trickiest to deal with because our options are so limited!
  • The two best actions you can take is:
    1. Address the first two causes to reduce the likelihood of blackheads
    2. Balance your skin with a gentle + soothing routine to reduce the cause of any further damage to pores. You can use these quizzes to help you cover your bases.
Until next time, stay radiant!
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Blackheads: causes and solutions / congestion / exfoliation / green beauty

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