5 blackhead myths busted!
Blackheads are caused by dirt stuck in my pores.
Blackheads are formed when the oil your skin produces mixes with dead skin cells and forms a blockage in the pore. The surface of these blockages turns black as the air oxidises the normally colourless oil.
Blackheads are not from having dirty skin but more to do with the oil your skin produces being too thick and sticky. The key is to improve the quality of your skin’s oil and keep it flowing which prevents it from getting stuck in the first place. To do this you need to replace foods that degrade the quality of your oil like cheese and chocolate with more supportive alternatives (see our list). It is also important to include the Bestow Beauty Oil in your diet as this has been formulated to improve the quality of your oil and help prevent it blocking. BUT remember this needs to be in conjunction with reducing your intake of congesting foods! (read more about congesting foods here!)
Having blackheads means I have oily skin.
Anyone can develop blackheads regardless of how oily their skin is. It is not about the amount of oil your skin produces but more about the thickness of that oil and/or the tightness of the pore. The thicker the oil or the tighter the pore, the more likely it is that it will block, and a blackhead will form.
So the key is to make sure you have really good quality oil that flows well. Taking the Bestow Beauty Oil supports this. It is also important to avoid congesting foods which can thicken the oil in your skin, making it more likely to block the pore. Topical hydration is also very important to reduce the occurrence of blackheads. You skincare routine needs to support hydration to keep your skin soft and supple, allowing the flow of oil naturally out onto the skins surface.
I get lots of tiny blackheads on my nose and in the crease of my chin.
Chances are these aren’t blackheads. We all have slightly larger pores on the nose and some parts of the chin. The inner walls of our pores are constantly sheading skin cells and this helps protect us from infection. If harmful bacteria find their way into our pores, chances are they will find themselves on a very unstable surface. As helpful as this is, it does mean that larger pores, combined with a little bit of oil and shedding cells leaves you with slightly darker pores. You can squeeze something out of if you try but honestly, don’t try! It will be back within a few days and you risk permanently damaging the pore opening. Remember these are not blackheads, which are actual blockages in the skin.
To help minimise the look of these slightly larger pores, work on keeping your skin hydrated. However, drinking water is not enough! You need a topical approach to hydrating the skin. We recommend bathing the skin with a Bestow soaking cloth before locking in that precious moisture by applying a good quality oil or moisturiser, depending on your skins needs. This will help refine your pores AND prevent your skin cells from building up.
It doesn’t matter what I do, I’m just more prone to blackheads.
Good news! There are definitely things you can do to prevent yourself getting blackheads. It is a two-way approach of treating the skin, looking at what you are feeding your skin (or not feeding it!) and also what you are putting on it.
The oil produced by the skin needs to be of good quality and of the right consistency to be able to flow naturally onto the skins surface where it acts as a barrier. To do this you need to make sure you’re consuming an essential fatty acid supplement such as Bestow Beauty Oil. Bestow Beauty Oil is blended to meet your skin’s needs for EFA’s. Unfortunately, relying on food to provide this doesn’t cut it these days. Alongside EFA’s we always recommend a vitamin B supplement as this helps support the EFA’s to do their job. We recommend the Bestow Beauty From Beneath which has been formulated with your skin in mind, giving you the correct balance of B vitamins it needs.
There are also certain foods that contribute to blackheads by degrading the quality of the skins oil and therefore causing it to block. See the list of these below and how to replace them with skin friendly alternatives.
Topically the key is to keep the skin hydrated. This can easily be done with a good skin care routine which includes bathing the skin and then the application of good quality products. The Bestow Soaking cloth is a great tool for bathing the skin. Following this step we encourage you to apply a very hydrating gel or serum and then immediately locking all that precious moisture with a quality moisturiser or oil. Doing this skin care routine religiously morning and night will keep your skin hydrated and healthy.
Having blackheads means I am not cleansing or exfoliating enough.
It’s the exact opposite! You may be over cleansing and over exfoliating your skin which causes dehydration. Many of us feel when we get blackheads that our skin needs a good clean and we approach this in a variety of ways. Firstly, we are tempted to cleanse morning and night or double cleanse at night. The skin only needs cleansing at the end of the day to remove makeup, chemicals and pollutants and it usually requires this to be done only once. When we cleanse the skin twice, we risk removing the protective barrier of the skin leaving it open to all those nasties we are trying to protect it from and causing it to become dehydrated.
You can also want to give the skin a good scrub, convincing ourselves that the harder we scrub and the harsher the exfoliant the cleaner our skin will be. FALSE! Over exfoliating the skin will strip the protective barrier away and can leave it feeling dehydrated and tight – trust us, not a good thing!
A skin that is dehydrated from over cleansing or over exfoliating is more likely to experience tightening of the pores and therefore blackheads. Instead we recommend cleansing once in the evening with a gentle lotion or cream cleanser and using a gentle exfoliant every few days.