You wake up in the morning and see one ugly bump on your face. It may be a whitehead, inflamed pustule (pus-filled) or just a modest blackhead. Either way, you search for the simplest, fastest way to get rid of it and the first tool you reach out for is your hands. You either want to pop it, squeeze it, squish it, prick it, scratch it, scrape it….
However, before you do that, take note of this:
The reason you’re not supposed to pop pimples is that anytime you deliberately break skin, you risk creating a scar or getting an infection. Popping pimples also in the long term damages skin.
According to some dermatologists, you should only pop a Whitehead and not a Blackhead. Whitehead pimples have usually been around for a few days, and they have a white tip where pus has collected underneath the skin. These pimples are easy to pop, and when treated with care they can be safely removed without causing an infection or scarring.
However doing it right is difficult for most people that is why it is generally advised to avoid it. As tempting as it may be to pop that pimple, you may regret it later if it scars. If you squeeze a whitehead wrongly:
- you inflame it and the tissue around it
- it bleeds and scabs over, making it harder to cover up
- it ends up lasting a week instead of a few days
- you might even damage the skin, leaving you with a scar
Still, there are many people who just can’t resist attacking a pimple. It can be an irresistible impulse, much like scratching a mosquito bite or picking a scab. So, if you insist on attending to it right away, here’s what you can do instead. I found this on TheBeautyDepartment
- Run hot water that is pretty hot but not so hot that you can’t touch it with your finger. Place a corner of a clean washcloth under the hot water to soak it.
- Wring it out so it’s no longer dripping.
- Immediately hold the corner with your finger directly on top of the blemish. This is bringing all of the fluid to the surface (where the phrase “bringing it to a head” comes from).
- Watch TV or chill for a few minutes until the cloth is no longer warm. While holding your finger still directly on top of it, gently slide your finger 1 millimeter in any direction. The whitehead should slide right off with the cloth.
- If not, no worries, you just need to repeat steps 1-4 again until it’s ready and it works.
Whatever you do, make sure you never use your nails to pop a piimple. Also, don’t pop the pimple if you don’t think it’s ready to pop. If it’s something little and you try and mess with it, it’ll make it look worse.
A final caution: There are types of pimples you should never try to pop, no matter how great the urge — cysts and nodules, which are firm, painful pimples that form deep in your skin. The treatment for these pimples is more complex than that for regular acne, and they should be treated by a doctor only.
What are your thoughts on these tips? How do you resist the urge to pop a pimple anytime you feel like? Do you know of any other ‘proper’ way to pop a pimple? Let’s share!