We already know how to extract blackheads at home, but we have to ask: is there a gentler alternative to squeezing your way to clearer pores? We spoke with Dr. Amy Wechsler, dermatologist and Chanel skincare advisor, and asked for her tips on banishing pesky blackheads using only all-natural ingredients. Turns out, your kitchen pantry is filled with pore-cleaning ingredients—you just have to know where to look.
Click through the slideshow above for five all-natural fixes for your blackhead problem!
Photo courtesy of Tom Schirmacher for Harper's Bazaar Mexico
“First, be sure to always clean your face thoroughly in the evenings,” Wechsler says. “This will cut down on any buildup from makeup, oils, and other toxins that accumulate on your face throughout the day.”
After cleansing, she suggests applying an exfoliating oatmeal mask. “Start by grinding the oatmeal down with a mortar and pestle or food processor,” she says. Then she suggests adding a tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of water to the oatmeal, and mixing together to create a paste. Apply it to your skin and allow it to sit for 20 to 30 minutes until it hardens, then remove it gently with warm water—you may have to scrub a bit to remove it, which makes it a great stand-in exfoliator. Plus, oats are filled with natural cleansers called saponins, which help remove dirt and oil from your pores. Less oil, less blackheads!
“A whole milk compress can help slough away dry, dead skin, and loosen any dirt particles that may be trapped in your pores,” Wechsler says. First, soak a washcloth in whole milk and apply it to your face for 10 minutes. Then she says to gently rub the cloth over your face to loosen dead skin cells and exfoliate. Finish by washing your face with warm water and cleanser, and finish with a moisturizer to seal in hydration.
Honey has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties—when it’s applied to your skin, it can draw out impurities, reduce redness, and calm inflammation. For this method, start with clean, dry skin. Place a small amount of honey on your fingers, then pat it gently over the areas where your blackhead problem is most rampant. The honey will draw out oils and leave your complexion clearer!
Out of pore strips? DIY your own with egg whites—they’re a natural astringent that can tighten pores and benefit anyone with oily or acne-prone skin.
Whisk your egg whites in a bowl and apply to your face using any type of foundation brush. Once your face is covered, break up strips of tissue paper and lay them over your face. Apply one more layer of egg whites over the tissue paper, and wait 15 to 20 minutes for the “peel” to dry. Slowly peel away the dried tissue paper, wash your face, and rinse with warm water.
You know the tightening, brightening vitamin C in your favorite eye cream and skin serum? It’s naturally abundant in lemons, which makes it the perfect all-natural way to brighten your complexion.
To create your lemon scrub, cut a lemon in half and apply three to four drops of honey. (Tip: You can sprinkle brown sugar on top to add exfoliating benefits!) Then, just rub the lemon over your face, focusing on blackhead-prone areas. Wait for five minutes, then wash the residue off with warm water. The honey will soften and soothe, and the lemon will brighten and draw out pore-clogging oils!
Have you tried any of these DIY blackhead-busting remedies? How do you get rid of blackheads? Sound off in the comments!