Blackheads : Causes, Picture, Symptoms and Home Remedies

Blackheads are a kind of acne. Almost everyone gets blackheads at some point in life. It is a natural process which happens within the skin. To prevent blackheads, you need to understand blackheads.

What are blackheads?

Blackheads are clogged pores or hair follicles. The human body contains millions of hair follicles including the face. Every follicle contains one hair and one sebaceous gland which produce natural oil to keep moisture in your face skin.

When skin grows dead cells in the skin, they can enter the follicle and combine with sebum which results in the formation of a plug. This plug inside of the skin pushes the surface and develop a bump, which describes as comedones.

When a bump on the clogged pore stays closed is described as the white head.

A blackhead happens when the skin around a bump stay opens and exposed to air. Due to air exposure, the sebum (moisturizing oil) turns black or gray, that’s why it describes as a blackhead.

Blackheads are mild kind of acne which usually occur on the face, but apart from face blackheads occur on other body parts such as

  • Arms
  • Chest
  • Neck
  • Shoulder

Blackhead Myth

To eliminate blackheads, you must know the blackheads properly. There are some common myth and misunderstanding related to blackheads.

Blackhead doesn’t occur due to dirty skin. Therefore, frequently washing your face will not remove the blackheads.

Deep cleansing roots blackheads and remove extra oil from the skin surface.

You can not scrub the blackheads because scrub can only remove the upper portion of blackheads. Scrub can reach to the roots of the blackhead. That’s blackheads appear even after doing a nice scrub.

Apart from oily skin, people with dry skin can also get blackheads, especially on the nose. In entire face skin nose having more oil glands.

You can experience the blackhead without getting acne. Individuals with acne also develop blackheads, but it may occur without any breakout.

Causes of Blackheads

Here are the main causes of developing blackheads.

Oily skin

Oily skin refers to a type of skin in which sebaceous glands in the skin produce excess sebum.

Sebum is a wax kind of natural oil substance which helps skin to stay hydrated and protect it. It is necessary to maintain healthy skin to prevent blackheads.

Some people naturally have oily skin due to excess hormone which describes as dihydrotestosterone. These hormones are responsible for inducing the sebaceous gland to create sebum. The higher you have these androgenic hormones there are more chances of more oil production in the skin.

Dihydrotestosterone hormones occur during the puberty stage in both boys and girls. In women, menstrual cycle causes to affect dihydrotestosterone hormone and increase progesterone. Often, you may have noticed why your skin is oily before your menstruation. The increasing levels of progesterone are things to blame.

However, excess sebum can cause the plugged pore, oily skin, blackheads. Maintaining proper skin care can help to overcome the more sebum production and blackheads. When you have oily skin, you will see the following symptoms.

  • Greasy or shiny skin appearance
  • Large Pores
  • Rough skins
  • Frequent pimple occurrence
  • clogged pores

Hormonal changes

Hormonal change occurs due to many factors such as puberty, menopause, and pregnancy. The hormonal change activates the sebaceous gland to generate more sebum. Extra oil in the skin leads pore clogging and cause bumps.

Hormonal changes also happen due to certain medicines such as corticosteroids. Even androgen hormones induce huge sebum production in skin cells which cause blackheads.


Propionibacterium can contribute to blackheads. The gram-positive bacteria found in sebum and fatty acids in the follicles. Excess sebum production increases these bacterial growths. It can spread through your hands and cell phones.

According to research these bacteria live in skin and cause infections after surgery. It can also spread in the brain and cause infection.

A professor of microbiology Peter Lambert from Birmingham England – Aston University said, these bacteria spread and become cancerous.

While Propionibacterium is generally harmless, but frequent occurrence of blackheads requires more attention to prevent potential pathogen.

Dietary factors and diseases

Poor nutrition and dieting can affect your hormonal balance. Certain dairy products and foods cause to increase blood sugar levels which result in increased insulin production. This condition triggers the oil creation process in the skin which clogs your skin pores.

A disease like diabetes causes changes in hormones. It causes to raise the insulin levels and IGF – 1 hormones. It also affects the sebum production levels and results in fast cell growth which can create pore clogs.


Smoking cause blackheads problem because cigarette smoke contains particles such as chemicals, ash, and tar. These particles cause to block the skin pores. It leads to damage of skin cells directly or indirectly and causes dead skin.

Due to smoking women experience non-inflammatory acne which describes as large blackheads and blocked pores but these are less inflamed than normal acne. A study found, 1000 women who are a smoker and they developed acne and blackhead four times more than non – smokers.


Stress doesn’t directly cause blackheads, but it triggers many factors which contribute to blackheads indirectly.

Day to day stress can affect adrenal glands which are responsible for regulating stress. Whenever you get a stressful situation, your adrenal glands stimulate sebaceous gland and produce oil. The more oil production because of adrenal glands causes blackheads.

Skin allergies

Sensitive skin complexion causes to produce more sebum to protect itself. You will notice skin inflammation accompanied by blackheads and whiteheads. The skincare fragrance is a common issue which causes skin allergies. People with reactive skin should consider sensitive skin care product to prevent allergies and blackheads.

Dry skin

In some cases, dry skin also causes blackheads. The dehydration in the skin causes to skin overreaction by producing more sebum to hydrate the skin. The excess sebum gets trapped in the pores with dead cells which causes blackheads and flaky skin. This condition happens due to the following reasons.

  • Sun exposure
  • Harsh skin products
  • less effective moisturizer


Dirt mixed with sweat, oil and dead skin forms blackheads. If you don’t clean your skin or face properly, then your pores get plugged due to dirtiness. Not removing makeup during sleep contribute to blackheads because your makeup gets mixed with sweat and other pollutants.

Squeezing Blackheads

It’s true that squeezing blackheads causes bacteria to spread in healthy skin and leads to blackheads and another type of acne. When you squeeze a blackhead or a pimple, it will blast out the inside water kind of pus stick to surrounding skin pores and generate new blackheads. Bacteria is the main cause of spreading blackheads. Therefore, you need to use medicated soap, which contains benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid for cleaning the pores safely.

Caffeine and Alcohol

Caffeine intake causes to increase the oil production in the skin. Alcohol intake cause to decrease the pores size which makes it more likely to get clogged with dead skin cell and low amount of oil to create a blackhead.


Certain foods such as oily food, fatty foods, and high sugar content foods cause pore clogging. Initial whiteheads and blackheads are an indication on the skin. Eventually, this type of food causes to develop pus-filled acne and small pimples due to unhealthy diets.

Symptoms of Blackheads

Generally, everyone knows about how the blackheads appear. Its main symptom is small black pimple occur.

The blackheads may occur with other acne also.

Since blackheads don’t have any inflammation, it will not cause pain.

If blackheads have an infection with bacteria and dust, they will cause inflammation and pain same like pustules and pimple.

There will be raised surface, but blackheads appear flatter than other pimples.

Due to the abnormal appearance of blackheads, the person may feel psychological and social embarrassment.

Blackheads Home Remedies

Here are the wondrous home remedies to shed blackheads.


Honey is a popular ancient home remedy for the medicinal purpose. Its advantages are many, and its antibacterial quality provides amazing benefits for treating clogged pores. You can mix it with sugar and lemon. Lemon juice lighten your skin and sugar is an incredible exfoliator.

Remedy Ingredient

  • Organic raw honey – 1 tablespoon
  • Lemon juice – 1 tablespoon
  • Sugar – 1 tablespoon

How to use?

  • Mix honey, sugar, and lemon all together and scrub the blackheads gently.
  • Leave this application for 15 minutes and wash with warm water.
  • You can use the honey scrub every day.
  • All type of skin can use this remedy.

Egg White

You can apply egg white face pack to stop blackheads. It also prevents greasy texture of skin. It helps to tighten your skin pores by removing blackheads.

Egg white contains an ingredient called as albumin which helps to tighten the pore and helps skin to glow. The egg white remedy is suitable for oily skin combination.

Remedy Ingredients

  • One egg white
  • One teaspoon honey

How to use?

  • Apply the blend of egg white and honey on your face as well as other body parts with blackheads.
  • Let the face pack get dry and then wash your face with warm water.
  • Do this remedy twice a week.


Apart from cooking use, you can utilize cinnamon on skin also. It helps to increase blood circulation and improve skin glow. When it mixed with lemon, work as a wonder to bind the skin pores. Lemon’s antibacterial quality helps to tackle the blackheads. It is suitable for the normal and oily skin.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Cinnamon powder – one tablespoon
  • Lemon juice – one tablespoon

How to use?

  • Combine cinnamon powder and lemon juice and make a solid paste.
  • Do a patch test to check any reaction and know whether this remedy works for you or not.
  • If your skin doesn’t show any reaction in patch test, then use the cinnamon paste on blackhead space and wash it after twenty minutes.
  • Continue this remedy three to four times a week.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera calms the skin, flushes pores, and furthermore controls abundance oil formation. It helps to remove blackheads, skin break out, and numerous other skin issues.

Remedy Ingredient

  • Fresh aloe vera gel

How to use?

  • Take a fresh gel from an aloe vera leaf and directly apply on the face and other body parts with blackheads.
  • Keep it for around 10 minutes and wash with lukewarm water.
  • You can apply it every day to get an acne free and softer skin.

Tumeric and mint

Turmeric recognized as an extraordinary healing ingredient. Its key component, curcumin, antimicrobial in nature and eliminates the microorganisms existing in the skin’s pores. Turmeric likewise contains calming and cell reinforcement properties, which additionally enhance the surface and strengthen your skin. Mint juice relieves the skin with its extremely cooling qualities. It is most appropriate for all skin type.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Turmeric powder – One tablespoon
  • Fresh mint juice – Two tablespoon

How to use?

  • Blend the turmeric with the mint juice to make a paste.
  • Apply this paste on the blackhead spots and let it dry for 10-15 minutes.
  • Wash with lukewarm water. Bear in mind to moisturize the affected area.
  • Do this remedy once every week.



It is a considerably significant home remedy for skin problems. You can use it by topical application or consume orally. It comprises cell reinforcements (antioxidant) and calming (anti-inflammation) qualities. It productively removes blackheads from your skin.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Fresh fenugreek (one cup)
  • Water

How to use?

  • Make a creamy paste of fenugreek leaves with enough water.
  • Apply a light layer of the paste on the blackheads parts.
  • Wash after ten minutes with lukewarm water.
  • Pat dry and then apply moisturizing lotion.
  • Use fenugreek face pack for blackheads one to two times a week.


Tomato has special antibacterial qualities which help to remove blackheads. It additionally comprises lycopene uses powerful antioxidant which influences the skin and eliminates all the harmful free radicals.

Remedy Ingredients

  • A tomato (depend on how many parts you have blackheads)

How to use?

  • Take a tomato, peel and crush it, and apply it over the clogged pores before sleep.
  • Keep it the whole night and wash in the morning.
  • Do this remedy every night.
  • This remedy is most appropriate for all skin types.
  • If your sensitive skin, then mixes water in tomato juice.

Green Tea


Green tea is an amazing anti-oxidant which helps to prevent blackheads and make skin to glow. It retains the pollutions and clears blackheads rapidly.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Dry green tea leaves – One teaspoon
  • Water

How to use?

  • Blend the tea leaves with water to make a paste.
  • Apply this paste all over and keep it for 15-20 minutes.
  • Wash the paste from the face with lukewarm water, pat dry and apply moisturizing cream.
  • Continue with this remedy one time a week.
  • This remedy work for all type of skin.

Clay Mask


You can use bentonite clay which helps to absorb the skin impurities and clean the pores. Naturally, it contains antibacterial qualities. Its regular usage will help to remove the blackheads from their roots. It is good for all skin types.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Bentonite clay – one tablespoon
  • Water

How to use?

  • Combine sufficient water into the clay powder to make a paste of medium consistency.
  • Apply clay mask on affected parts to remove the blackheads.
  • Let it dry for some time.
  • Wash the area with lukewarm water. Pat dry and moisturize the skin.
  • Use clay remedy once or twice every week.
  • If you have delicate or dry skin, substitute water with raw milk.


Activated charcoal is normal charcoal which exposed to a gas in the lab to make it more absorbent. This extended porosity influences it to ingest more of contaminations from the environment and confine them inside.

Applying activated charcoal helps to absorb pollutants and remove the blackheads.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Activated charcoal – 2 capsules
  • Bentonite clay – Ā½ teaspoon
  • Water

How to use?

  • Extract the activated charcoal from the capsules and combine bentonite clay.
  • Mix enough water to make a medium consistency paste.
  • Apply it on face and blackhead spots.
  • Let this mask get dry and wash with warm water. Don’t forget to moisturize your skin.
  • Apply charcoal pack two times every week.
  • This remedy is helpful for oily skin which is more likely to get acne.



Strawberries can also remove clogged pores. It is one of the safest home treatments for blackheads. The alkalinity of strawberries lowers the swelling and cleanse the blocked pores. Strawberries contain plenty of vitamin C which helps to boost skin dryness and moisture.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Strawberry – one
  • Honey – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Lemon Juice – 1/2 teaspoon

How to use?

  • Crush the strawberry and mix with honey and lemon juice then make a paste.
  • Apply the strawberry paste on blackhead affected parts and keep it for 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Later wash with cold water.
  • You can follow this remedy every week for one time.
  • This remedy work for all skin types.

Baking Soda


Baking Soda contains antibacterial and antifungal qualities plus it is a great exfoliator for skin problems. It is a powerful and efficient home remedy for removing clogged pores and even pimples.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Baking soda – 1 tablespoon
  • Water – 2 tablespoons

How to use?

  • Prepare an application of baking soda by mixing water into it.
  • Use this paste on the clogged pore spots.
  • Rinse the affected part with lukewarm water after twenty minutes.
  • For quick results, use this remedy every day.
  • Baking soda remedy work for combination and oily skin.
  • You can add toothpaste or lemon drops to enhance the advantages.

Coconut Oil


Coconut oil also a home remedy for removing blackheads. It contains lauric acid which is a widely tested antimicrobial agent which helps to nourish the skin and excrete the dead skin cells. This remedy is suitable for dry skin combination.

Remedy Ingredient

  • Organic virgin coconut oil

How to use?

  • Apply organic coconut oil on blackhead affected spots and gently massage.
  • Leave it without washing the skin, and it will get absorbed in the skin.
  • Do this remedy every day before sleeping.



Lemon combined with yogurt is an amazing home remedy for eliminating blackheads. It helps to remove the skin pollutants, brighten the skin and tighten the pores.

Yogurt in this remedy acts as a natural moisturizer and prevent dry skin.

Mixing salt in this remedy can be a great exfoliator.

Remedy ingredients

  • Lemon juice – One tablespoon
  • Yogurt – One tablespoon
  • Salt – half tablespoon

How to use?

  • Make an application by mixing all ingredients.
  • Apply the lemon application generally in circular motion.
  • Wash it after 10 – 20 minutes with warm water.
  • You can follow this remedy every alternate day.
  • Do not scrub harshly.
  • This remedy work for all type skin.
  • Milk

Milk is a home remedy for blackheads. It comprises lactic acid which helps to excrete blackheads and dead skin.

Remedy ingredients

  • Raw milk
  • One teaspoon Nutmeg powder (optional)

How to use?

  • Apply raw milk on blackheads part and gently scrub.
  • Wash applied milk after 10 minutes with warm water.
  • Continue milk remedy every day till you see the change in blackheads affected parts.

Do not use milk remedy if you have allergies to dairy products.

Castor oil

Castor oil is popular in India and Africa for its cleansing qualities. It helps to absorb skin contamination and removes dead skin and blackheads.

Remedy Ingredients

  • Castor oil

How to use?

  • Lightly apply castor oil on clean face and massage your skin for 2 minutes.
  • Leave it without washing. If you feel greasy, then wipe the extra oil from your face skin with cotton after 15 to 20 minutes.

Jojoba Oil

You can get rid of the blackheads with essential oil of jojoba that intently resembles natural oil in the skin. When you apply jojoba oil, it diminishes the generation of excess sebum that was causing clogged pores. The unclogged pores help to remove the blackheads. Jojoba oil remedy is best for dry skin combination.

Remedy ingredient

  • Jojoba oil

How to use?

  • By using the warm water rinse your face and pat dry.
  • For a couple of minutes massage your skin with jojoba oil. Then keep the oil in your skin for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Using warm water wash your face again to remove oil.
  • You can also mix tea tree oil in this remedy.
  • Follow jojoba oil remedy every day two times.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple juice vinegar is a multipurpose and intense solution which can be utilized to treat various skin issues. Its antibacterial properties help to remove every harmful contamination present on your skin. Moreover, it will help to remove blackheads and cleanse pores. This home remedy work for all skin types.

Remedy ingredients

  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Cotton ball

How to use?

  • Apply Apple Cider Vinegar by using a cotton ball and then let it get dry.
  • Wash your face using warm water.
  • Continue this remedy to remove skin-related issues.
  • If your skin is sensitive to apple vinegar, then mix equal amount of water in it.


Taking steam to your face or body opens up clogged pores which can help extract the blackheads easily as steam is an amazing exfoliator. It removes toxins and boosts blood circulation. Steaming is the best simple home remedy for getting rid of blackheads.

Remedy ingredients

How to use?

  • Pour hot water into the bowl or tub. Cover your face with a towel but keep some distance so that the hotness should not burn your skin.
  • Take steam for 2 to 3 minutes and repeat at least 3 to 4 times.
  • You can also use sea salt or brown sugar in this remedy.
  • You can also use sea salt or brown sugar in this remedy.

Other Home Remedy


You can use mint toothpaste to remove blackheads. The mint from toothpaste helps to kill bacteria and open up the clogged pores. In the end, you need to rub ice cube gently which helps to close the pore and limit further blackheads.

Remedy ingredients

  • Mint toothpaste
  • Water
  • An ice cube

How to use?

  • Apply toothpaste on the blackhead affected parts such as nose or chin.
  • When toothpaste gets dry, massage the affected skin in a circular motion by applying some water.
  • Then wash it and gently rub the ice cube over the affected parts.
  • Continue toothpaste remedy every day.
  • Don’t forget to moisturize your skin in the end.


Makeup removing is important to avoid pores clogging. Make sure to remove makeup before going to bed because oil build-up can result in blackheads. You can use oil-free cleanser to remove the bacteria. Keep your face moisturized to prevent dry skin which often causes blackheads and breakouts. Skin cleansing remedy work for all type of skins.

Remedy Ingredients

  • An oil-free cleanser (antibacterial)
  • Moisturizer

How to use?

  • Remove makeup and apply antibacterial oil-free cleanser.
  • Cleanse gently and use circular motions.
  • Wash it and pat dry and apply moisturizer.
  • Continue this remedy two times a day.

Blackheads Treatment

When your skin condition becomes severe with lots of blackhead and infection, then it requires medical professional cosmetic treatment help. Here are blackheads removal options.

Over-The-Counter (OTC) Medicines

There are some over the counter medicine such as topical retinoid and salicylic. It helps to remove the skin debris and exfoliating skin and prevent bacteria.

Another option is nose strip which requires to apply on the nose and peel to remove blackheads.

Some dermatologist suggests oral medication which contains adapalene and tazarotene. It helps to treat internal skin.

Blackheads manual removal

Dermatologist removes blackheads manually with a round loop extractor. Initially blocked pore gets unplugged and blackheads extracted by applying more pressure. This method requires a special technique to remove blackheads with scaring on the skin.


In this method, the dermatologist uses equipment with the rough surface on the top skin layer. Then the top layer gets rubbed to unplug the blackheads.

Chemical Peels

A chemical solution applied to the skin which exfoliates the skin from roots. It also cleanses the pores thoroughly and removes blackhead. This method depends on the sever condition of the patient.

Laser Therapy

Laser or light therapy depends on the cause of getting frequent blackheads. Your dermatologist uses light beams or laser in roots layer to regulate the sebum production. It also removes bacteria from inner skin layers and prevents pore infection.

Cost of Blackhead Removal

In India blackhead removal cost range between INR 1500 to INR 2500 per session. Increasing cost depends on the expertise of dermatologist, skin type and other skin conditions.

In the last, I would like to suggest you maintain a healthy lifestyle and care your skin. Even after removal of blackheads with home remedy or treatment, there are chances of getting it back. Whenever some change happens in health or hormone, it will affect the sebum (skin oil) production. Therefore eat healthy food and stay stress-free.

One Comment

  1. I have blackheads all over my nose and some on my cheeks. They are very deep. I do squeeze my nose because I continually get this yellowish thick crap out of many of these pores. I figure it’s old sunscreen/moisterizer clogging the pores.
    I am 60 years old. I have always had very very oily skin,but no ache.

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