Those of us who have experienced acne outbreaks and regular blemishes probably have also come across blackheads, at least from time to time. These stubborn spots are follicles that have a wider than normal opening, allowing them to fill up with dead skin and other bacteria that forms on our faces. These holes can be difficult to treat, but they’re not from lack of hygiene- the black color they form is cause by melanin that enters the blackhead, giving it its color.
Causes of blackheads vary, and typically they’re not because of a lack of hygiene or not washing your face enough- some of these might surprise you.
- Hormones: A major cause of blackheads is hormone production- fluctuations in your body’s hormones cause acne and other skin problems. Higher concentrations of certain hormones incite skin to become more oily, clogging pores and making acne run rampant- as well as blackheads.
- Smoking: Cigarette smoke contains many particles that get trapped in your skin, causing acne and blackheads. Smoking also blocks your pores, clogging them and allowing trapped in dirt and other particles to cause your blackheads. Smoking also inhibits effective treatment of blackheads and other skin problems, so not only are you causing the problem, but you’re preventing it from ever going away.
- Makeup: Everyone should know by now that sleeping with your makeup on is a major no-no. This leads to blocked pores, the major cause of blackheads. Always wash your face in the morning and before bed, and never sleep with makeup on.
- Alcohol & Caffeine: Caffeine kick-starts your oil glands and alcohol greatly affects sleeping patterns- ultimately affecting your skin. Alcohol even reduces the size of your pores, which may sound like a benefit but it’s not- it leaves them even more susceptible to clogging and makes it tougher to clean them out.
- What You Eat: You are what you eat- fried, sugary, and high carb foods have a direct impact on your skin. Watch for when your blackheads flare up- what have you been eating lately? You’ll quickly learn what to cut down.
Practicing good skin care habits and a healthy diet are the best ways to keep skin happy and blemish-free. If you’re having blemish problems and need to see a dermatologist, Zimmet Vein & Dermatology is here to help. Contact us today to make an appointment.