what causes blackheads

What are Blackheads?

Blackheads are a type of acne that develop when pores become blocked with excess oil and dead skin. They are small, dark spots on the skin and can occur on the face, chest, back, neck, and arms. Blackheads are a common skin concern, especially for teenagers who are going through hormonal changes.

What Causes Blackheads?

There are several factors that can contribute to the development of blackheads.

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Oil & Dead Skin

Your skin naturally produces oil, called sebum, which can accumulate in the pores and become clogged. This, combined with dead skin cells, can form a plug, which appears as a blackhead on your skin.


Hormonal changes, such as what teens go through during puberty, can also cause an uptick in oil production, leading to more blackheads.


Bacteria, specifically propionibacterium acnes, can mix with sebum and oil in the pores and trigger the development of blackheads.


Certain medications, such as steroids, can lead to an increase in oil production, which in turn can cause blackheads.


Stress can also affect your body’s production of certain hormones, which can lead to an increase in sebum production and blackheads.

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Preventing Blackheads

Although blackheads cannot always be prevented, there are some steps you can take to reduce their development.

Cleanse Regularly

Washing your face with a gentle cleanser twice a day can help remove dirt, oil, and bacteria that may clog your pores and cause blackheads.


Exfoliation can help remove any dead skin cells and other buildup that can block your pores.


Using a moisturizer can help keep your skin hydrated and prevent your body from overproducing oil.

Avoid Overwashing

While it is important to wash your face, doing it too often can strip your skin of natural oils, leading to dryness, redness, and irritation.

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Change Your Pillowcase

Changing your pillowcase regularly can help reduce blackhead formation by preventing oils, dirt, and bacteria from accumulating on the fabric.


Blackheads can be brought on by a variety of factors, such as oil, dead skin, hormones, bacteria, medications, and stress. To help reduce the development of blackheads, you should practice good skincare habits, such as cleansing and exfoliating regularly, avoiding overwashing, and changing your pillowcase often.

Keywords: blackheads, acne, skin, excess oil, dead skin cells, hormones, bacteria, medications, sebum, oil, moisturizer, pillowcase.