No one likes waking up to a zit; and now that it’s common for acne to persist decades beyond the teenage years, it seems like more of us are. So what’s your first instinct when confronted with a white or black-headed monster? Well if you’re like most women, it’s to take matters into your own hands and pop it.
Even though most of us know better, picking at our blemishes is a popular method of treating acne because of its immediate results. Because truth, be told, who wants to wait around for days for a treatment to take effect when the date/event/presentation is only hours away? Well if you understood picking’s possible effects—and valued the long-term appearance of your skin—it would be clear that waiting is the best option.
Acne is the result of oil, bacteria, and dead cells becoming trapped within the skin’s pores. Overtime, this accumulation of buildup causes whiteheads, blackheads, papules (raised areas of skin), postules (pimples), cysts, and nodules. Nodules are the most difficult to treat because they are dense lesions located deep within the skin. For that reason, if you were to place pressure on these sensitive areas, you risk:
- Spreading the infection deeper within the skin’s tissue, which could lead to more breakouts
- Rupturing blood vessels, which could lead to bruising
- Damaging your skin’s cells, which could lead to scarring.
So how do you effectively banish breakouts without harming the integrity of your skin?
- Reduce the breakout’s size by applying a topical ointment that contains benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid as soon as possible
- Adjust your skincare regimen to focus on treating blemishes
- Learn how to camouflage acne to preserve your skin’s appearance as it heals
- Visit an aesthetician or dermatologist who can perform an extraction should your blemishes persist.