Blackheads are common skin lesions that are caused by clogged pores, which get filled with excess oil and can be painful. Therefore, it is essential to know how to treat them correctly to avoid any further complications.

What are blackheads?

Blackheads are irregularities that appear on the skin. This occurs when hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. Blackheads can appear anywhere on the body but are most common on your face, neck, chest, back, and shoulders. Blackheads are commonly found on oily skin but can appear on any skin type.

Why do blackheads appear?

Blackheads appear when the hair follicles become clogged due to sebum and dead cells not being able to exit through the skin's surface, causing them to accumulate in the pilosebaceous canal. The accumulation of these can lead to the formation of comedones, i.e. minor irregularities that can be open (blackheads) or closed (blemishes).

This accumulation of sebum and dead cells leading to the appearance of lesions or comedones may be partly due to various causes, such as hormonal changes, genetic predisposition, certain medications and skincare products, stress, diet and lifestyle.

What is the difference between blemishes and blackheads?

Blackheads and blemishes are two types of skin lesions that can appear on the face, neck, chest, and back, and they are often confused. The main difference is that blemishes can be of different types and causes, while blackheads are a specific type of comedone.

Blemishes on the face are skin lesions that can be caused by a variety of factors, such as the accumulation of proteins and debris on the skin’s surface, excessive production of sebum (the skin's natural oil), the activity of the main acne-causing bacteria (Cutibacterium acnes), excessive sweating and hormonal changes, as well as lifestyle factors such as diet and stress.

On the other hand, blackheads are a specific type of blemish that form when a hair follicle becomes clogged with sebum and dead cells. The blockage creates an environment for bacteria to reproduce, resulting in a small bump that can be open (blackhead) or closed (whitehead).

Blackheads and their types

Blackheads, also known as open comedones, are a type of pimple with a characteristic dark colour due to oxidation of sebum and keratin and a flat appearance. They are common in oily skin and, although they are not usually painful, they can affect the appearance of clear skin and may contribute to other types of skin concerns.

Black and hard pimples

Hard blackheads are commonly known as blackheads. They are a type of non-inflammatory lesion and form when the skin’s pores become clogged with excess oil, dead skin cells, and other debris. Unlike whiteheads, blackheads do not have a coating to cover them, allowing excess sebum and dirt to oxidize and darken.



Whiteheads, also known as closed comedones, can be small and non-inflammatory and have no visible opening in the skin. Whiteheads appear as small white or yellowish bumps that rise above the skin's surface and usually appear on the forehead, nose, cheeks, and chin, which are the oiliest areas of the skin.

Whiteheads can be caused by various factors, such as excessive sebum production due to hormonal changes, genetics, using comedogenic (pore-clogging) skin products, excessive sun exposure, stress, and the ingestion of certain foods. Therefore, carrying out good skin care habits aew important, such as using cleansing your skin, using products suitable for your skin type and living a healthy lifestyle.

In addition to these, other types of imperfections can appear in oily or acne-prone skin, and their appearance and formation characterise each. For more information on these, please consult a dermatologist or a skincare specialist.

Removing blackheads correctly

It is important to note that the manual removal of blackheads can be harmful if done incorrectly. If you are unsure how to remove them correctly or have severe acne, it is advisable to consult a Dermatologist for proper advice and treatment.

Removing blackheads step by step

Knowing how to remove blackheads correctly is important to avoid serious injury and infection.

Here's how to remove blackheads in the right and healthy way for your skin:

  1. Skin cleansing: Wash your face with a mild cleanser and warm water to remove excess sebum, dirt, and impurities from the skin. It is important not to use hot water or scrub the skin too hard, as this can irritate the skin and worsen imperfections.
  2. Gentle exfoliation: Gentle exfoliation can help unclog pores and remove dead skin cells.
  3. Application of a warm compress: A warm compress can help open and unclog pores, facilitating the disappearance of blackheads.

It is not recommended to touch the blemishes or blackheads or try to remove them at home as this can cause the entry of more bacteria and dirt, which exacerbates the problem by leading to the appearance of more imperfections. In addition, touching pimples can cause an injury to the skin that generates marks and scars. If you want to remove acne lesions safely, it is advisable to visit a professional.

The targeting of blackheads requires specific products for acne-prone and oily skin, specially formulated to deeply cleanse the skin without drying it out, while unclogging pores to alleviate the problem.

At CeraVe, we know how important it is to take care of your skin. That's why we try to offer products adapted to each skin type and specific need so that you can enjoy effective and tailor-made dermatological care.

How to avoid and target blackheads

To avoid the appearance of blackheads and pimples, it is essential to lead a healthy lifestyle and use products suitable for your skin type to prevent dirt and oil from accumulating in your pores. Here are some good habits you can incorporate into your daily routine to help target blackheads:

  • Cleanse your skin regularly: Cleansing the skin with a product such as the CeraVe Blemish Control Cleanser can help to prevent new spots/breakouts. Wash your face with this and warm water often to help keep your skin clean and free of dirt and excess sebum.
  • Avoid touching your face: Avoid touching the skin on your face with dirty hands or resting your chin on your hands.
  • Use products for oily and/or blemish-prone skin: Many products for blemish-prone skin can help reduce the appearance of blemishes, such as topical creams, gels, or lotions containing salicylic acid, because they remove dead skin cells and excess oil from your skin.
  • Healthy lifestyle: A balanced diet including fruits and vegetables.

Tips for avoiding the appearance of blemishes

When it comes to preventing new blemishes from appearing, it is important to use the right products for both cleansing and treatment. Here are some of our top products to prevent blemishes on the face.

Micellar Cleansing Water

If you want to remove makeup properly and free your face from impurities and dirt, our Cleansing and Moisturising Micellar Water will be your best ally. In addition to removing makeup and deep cleansing, it moisturises your skin, helping to maintain the skin’s protective barrier. It is perfect for normal, normal to dry, and dry to very dry skin.


This formula, enriched with 3 essential ceramides and niacinamide, helps to moisturise your skin and cleanse it whilst maintaining the skin barrier function. It has non-comedogenic and soothing properties, helping to keep your skin cleaned to help prevent the appearance of new blemishes.

Blemish Control Cleanser

One of the most important steps in taking care of your skin and avoiding blackheads is to cleanse your skin properly every day. For this, you need a cleanser that deeply purifies while keeping the skin barrier intact.

For blemish-prone skin, our flagship cleanser is our Blemish Control Cleanser. It is a revolutionary cleanser developed to help reduce the appearance of blemishes and blackheads. Including salicylic acid and hectorite clay, it helps exfoliate whilst leaving your skin feeling purified. Thanks to this formula, it ensures a deep cleansing of the skin, eliminating excess sebum and dirt, helping you to reduce the appearance of blemishes in oily skin.

Thanks to its light texture, cleansing is much more pleasant and gentle on your skin. It offers deep cleansing while keeping your skin hydrated.

To apply, simply wet your face with a little water and apply the cleanser until it foams, before rinsing with water. Sun sensitivity may increase while using the product, so it is recommended to complete your routine with a sunscreen.

Blemish Control Gel Moisturiser

After cleansing, it is advisable to apply a specific product to reduce blackheads and facial imperfections. For this purpose, we recommend our Blemish Control Gel Moisturiser. This light-textured treatment deeply moisturises the skin while helping to eliminate imperfections, minimise pores, and it contains exfoliating salicylic acid, without affecting the skin's protective barrier.

In addition, it is formulated with salicylic acid, 3 essential ceramides and niacinamide. It helps to maintain and reinforce the skin’s natural barrier whilst leaving it feeling soothed. Furthermore, it helps to reduce the appearance of blemishes and new breakouts from appearing thanks to it’s exfoliating properties.

To use, apply a thin layer once a day to a clean, dry face. During treatment, sensitivity to the sun may increase, so the use of sunscreen is recommended. Our best option is the use of a moisturiser with ceramides, that also has SPF protection. It helps to protect the skin’s natural barrier, while providing long-lasting hydration for up to 24 hours and UV protection.

Resurfacing Retinol Serum

A must-have in your daily face care routine is our Resurfacing Retinol Serum. Formulated with three essential ceramides, encapsulated retinol, niacinamide, and licorice root extract, this serum gives your skin a brighter, smoother, more even-toned appearance, and helps strengthen the skin’s natural barrier, often weakened by blemishes and blackheads, and smooth skin’s texture and reduce pores.

With the application of this serum, your skin will achieve a more uniform appearance while helping to reduce the appearance of post-acne marks and imperfections. To apply, simply spread the product evenly over your face every day, preferably as part of your evening routine, avoiding contact with your eyes.

Blemishes can be annoying and uncomfortable if not treated properly. At CeraVe we offer a complete range of products so you can care for and protect your skin and reduce the appearance of blemishes and blackheads. In addition, they reinforce the skin's barrier function and retain moisture, which improves the skin's elasticity. We develop products with our best ingredients to help reduce the appearance of blemishes and restore your skin's healthy appearance.

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