What are Blackheads?

Have you ever noticed black marks on your face and wondered what they are and how to take care of them? Those marks are known as blackheads.

What are blackheads?
According to Dr. Giacomo Maggiolino, board-certified dermatologist with Forefront Dermatology, “Blackheads are bumps found on the skin that appear when a hair follicle becomes clogged with oil and debris. They are a mild form of acne that commonly appear on the face, but can also appear on the back, shoulders, neck, chest and arms. Unlike pimples, blackheads are not painful because there is less inflammation than normal acne.”

Why are blackheads black?
Blackheads get their name from the dark hue that characterizes this form of acne. The name is deceiving though as it can form in a range of colors including gray, yellow, brown and black. The color is not from dirt, but actually from melanin pigment which oxidizes after coming in contact with air.

How to prevent blackheads?
Blackheads are easy to self-diagnose, and on their own, are not usually a cause for concern. “Many are tempted to remove blackheads, but the key is preventing them. Preventing blackheads are as easy as maintaining a regular face-washing regimen.

Washing your face once in the morning and evening, as well as after a workout, can help your skin prevent oil buildup that results in clogged pores.

If your blackheads have been impossible to prevent, or continue to come back, your board-certified dermatologist will be able to provide treatment plans,” added Dr. Maggiolino.

How to get rid of blackheads?
There are a wide array of dermatologist-provided treatments for getting rid of blackheads that have proven effective. Contact your local dermatologist to find out which of the below treatments is best for your condition.

• Topical application
• Manual removal
• Light therapy
Laser therapy
Chemical peels

Skin Struggles?
At Forefront Dermatology, we know that life is all about the moments when you don’t need us. That’s why we’re here for all the moments when you do. We offer comprehensive and compassionate care for all skin conditions and create customized treatment plans for all ages – even the tiniest of patients! Find a location near you today.