Is It Safe To Extract Blackheads At Home?

Have you ever looked at your skin in the mirror and come across multiple blackheads spread across your otherwise perfectly clear skin? We know that the urge to start pressing, squeezing, and digging to get rid of these unwelcome guests may be strong for many. But before waging war on your skin, there are some things you should know.

Now, first things first. Before you start evicting these terrible tenants, it would help to understand why they are there in the first place. According to Healthline, blackheads are small bumps that appear when hair follicles become clogged with dead skin cells and oil. If the skin over the bump stays closed, it is referred to as a whitehead. If the skin over the bump opens up and is exposed to air, the dead skin cells and oil will appear black in color — hence the name blackhead.

Now that you know what you are dealing with, we can reveal the good news: It can be safe to extract blackheads at home. But seriously, be careful!

How to extract blackheads safely

To start, wash your face with a gentle cleanser and have a pair of tweezers nearby. Once you have a clean surface to work with, it's time to hit it with some moisturizer and steam. Renée Rouleau, celebrity esthetician and CEO of Renée Rouleau Skin, told Glamour, "Moisturizer will create a temporary occlusive seal to keep the heat trapped in your skin, which makes extractions more seamless." She continued, saying, "For safe extractions and the easiest removal, it's important to have your skin as soft as possible." 

If you don't have a facial steamer, Rouleau suggests placing a warm washcloth over the affected area. Remove the cloth after a few minutes and with clean hands, gently press the blackhead on each side. Once it starts to come up from under the skin, then take the tweezers and carefully remove what's left.

If you don't have the patience or just don't feel comfortable removing blackheads yourself, leave them be until you can meet with a dermatologist or skincare professional. Healthline revealed that skincare professionals can remove blackheads manually or use more advanced techniques such as microdermabrasion or chemical peels. Whichever route you choose, we support your quest for a clear complexion. And most importantly, we want you to be careful when looking after your skin.