Pimples, Blackheads and Whiteheads: Skin Blemishes 101

Zit popping may be trending on YouTube of late, but take our advice: Don’t do it! Your face blemishes deserves much more TLC. From pimples to blackheads, here’s how to get clear skin:


Why Do Face Blemishes Form


It’s a no-brainer that clogged pores cause our faces to breakout with everything from blackheads to pimples. But what causes our pores to clog in the first place? In a nutshell, it’s a ripple effect. The sebaceous glands produce oil (that’s a good thing: otherwise, our skin would be extremely dry). When the body produces too much oil, the sebaceous glands fill up and trap both dead skin cells and the grime of the day. The result is like a plug, or the official term, a whitehead. The air can oxidize it and turn it into a blackhead. Or the clogged pore becomes ripe for bacteria and forms a bumpy, pus-filled pimple.  Acne is actually a spectrum disorder with mild acne referring to blackheads, whiteheads and spot pimples and severe acne referring to conditions like cystic acne, in which bacteria goes deep under the skin and causes infection.


How To Prevent Blemishes


The first line of defense for clear skin is prevention, which means including the following in your skin care routine:


  • Wash your face gently. And the keyword is gently. People often equate scrubbing with prevention. But overly harsh scrubbing can actually increase skin cell turnover and further clog your pores.


  • Be cautious of sweat. When you exert yourself and sweat, it can sit on the surface of your skin. Use face wipes to give your skin a chance to breathe.


  • Get a monthly facial. A professional facial is designed to exfoliate and cleanse the skin and leave your face fresh and toned.


  • Invest in a topical skincare product with Salicylic Acid, which can prevent pimples and blemishes by getting rid of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin.


How to Get Rid of Pimples


Once you have face blemishes, you can clear your skin by:


  • Considering a Topical Retinoid. Skincare products with Vitamin A unclog pores and reduce inflammation. But be careful the first time you use a retinoid, though. They are not well tolerated on sensitive skin. So start slowly and in small amounts. It’s also advised to avoid the sun when using a topical retinoid.


  • Spot Treating with Benzoyl Peroxide or a product that contains Alpha-Hydroxy Acid (AHA) to reduce inflammation.


  • Adding a Chemical Peel  to your professional facial. It will help the skin shed dead skin cells, temporarily reduce oil secretions and have an anti-inflammatory effect on the face.


Should You Pop Your Pimples


And, back to our original premise…No! Zit popping may be tempting, but it can lead to further inflammation, infection and even scarring. Leave extractions to a professional esthetician, who is trained in both preparing the skin for extractions and the proper techniques to prevent damage to the skin and restore the healthy, clear complexion you desire.


Smooth Synergy offers a comprehensive menu of treatments designed to treat and clear acneic and/or congested skin and return the skin’s smooth, natural glow. Call us at 212-397-0111 to speak with an expert in beauty about which treatment option is right for you.


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