Open comedones or blackheads are a type of acne lesion that generally occur on the nose, forehead and chin. They make an appearance when the hair follicles become clogged with oil, dead skin cells and bacteria. When I noticed them, I tried to squeeze the dark-coloured gunk-filled stubborn spots. But I couldn’t eliminate the blackheads, so my mom suggested a face pack made of coriander leaves and turmeric powder. She says this combination of kitchen ingredients can help to do away with blackheads.
The distinguishing factor of blackheads is their open surface, which reacts with air and turns the clog dark, giving them a black appearance. They are primarily caused by the overproduction of sebum (skin oil), which can combine with dead skin cells and become trapped in hair follicles, says dermatologist and cosmetologist Dr Kisalay Saurav.
Factors that can lead to formation of blackheads include hormonal changes, excessive oil production and use of comedogenic (pore-clogging) skin care products.
Coriander and turmeric are two popular kitchen ingredients when it comes to skin care. Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, while coriander is believed to have cleansing properties. This powerful combination may help to reduce inflammation while killing bacteria and cleansing the skin, says the expert.
You can make a face pack by blending coriander leaves and turmeric powder.
• Take a few coriander leaves and combine it with two teaspoons of turmeric powder.
• Pour some water to it to make a fine paste.
• Apply this DIY face pack on your face, especially your chin, nose and forehead before going off to sleep.
• Once you wake up the next morning, wash it off with water.
The antimicrobial properties of turmeric and the cleansing properties of coriander may contribute to reducing blackheads. All you have to do this is wear the pack two times a week.
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People with allergies to coriander or turmeric should avoid this remedy. Also, anyone with sensitive skin should perform a patch test before applying the mixture to the entire face, as these ingredients may cause irritation in some cases.
There are other natural ways to get rid of blackheads. Some of them are:
Take baking soda and put some water to it to make a paste then gently exfoliate your skin. It can help to clear blackheads and stops them from popping up again by neutralising the pH in your skin.
A mixture of honey and cinnamon can be applied as a face mask, suggests Dr Saurav. Honey is antibacterial, and cinnamon is an antiseptic which will help to reduce the bacteria on your skin to aid in the prevention of blackheads.
Create a scrub by mixing oatmeal and yogurt to exfoliate and soothe the skin.
Oatmeal is an ingredient that helps in exfoliating your skin. It cleanses out dirt and impurities from your pores. Yogurt, on the other hand, regulates oil production and reduces inflammation in the skin.
Use a cooled bag of green tea, which has anti-inflammatory properties, as a compress or incorporate it into a face mask.
Remember, it’s important to be cautious with home remedies and discontinue use if any irritation occurs. If blackheads worsen, check with a dermatologist.