woman removing blackheads from her nose

How to Remove Blackheads

It is not just what we put on our skin that counts - it's the food we eat too. With these tips for how to get rid of blackheads, you'll be well on track to enjoying clear skin.

How to Remove Blackheads

How to Remove Blackheads: What Are Blackheads?

In order to know exactly how to remove blackheads it helps to understand what they are and how they are formed. Blackheads are what occurs when hair follicles become blocked with dead skin cells - and not dirt, which is a common misconception. They are characterised as small, dark bumps that are most common on the face but can also be found elsewhere on the body.

How to Remove Blackheads

What Causes Blackheads?

As is similar with a lot skin issues, one of the best treatment of how to get rid of blackheads is prevention. By preventing them forming, there is less need for blackhead removal care. To know how to prevent blackheads, it helps to know what causes them to form.

Blackheads occur when an open hair follicle becomes clogged with dead skin cells. Once the follicle is clogged, a bump called a comedo is formed. When the skin over the bump remains closed a whitehead forms and when the skin over the bump is open a blackhead forms as exposure to air darkens the colour.

5 things that can cause blackheads to form include:

  1. Excess Sebum
    Sebum is perfectly natural and is our body's natural mechanism of keeping skin hydrated and protected. Without sebum we would have very dry skin, but too much of it can cause our pores & hair follicles to become clogged - leading to skin issues such as acne and blackheads.
  2. Fluctuations in Hormones
    Fluctuations in our hormone levels can cause our skin to produce excess oil which can clog pores and lead to blackheads. This is common in adolescent teenagers, during menstruation or when taking birth control pills.
  3. Not Regularly Exfoliating Your Face
    Exfoliating your face serves a different purpose to just washing. The purpose of washing your face is to remove day-to-day dirt to keep skin clean whereas exfoliating helps to clear away dead skin cells that clog pores. To help with blackhead removal and prevention, make sure you are exfoliating every 2-3 days.
  4. A Poor Diet
    Although no strong connection has been proven that a poor diet can increase the likelihood of blackheads, research does suggest that certain food products that increase blood sugar levels can play a part in worsening the condition of our skin. Eating a well balanced diet of fruit and veg that contains vitamins, minerals and antioxidants can help to keep skin clear.
  5. Leaving Makeup on Overnight
    This is a big skincare no no as it can cause all sorts of skin issues, one of which is clogged pores than can result in blackheads. Make sure you thoroughly remove makeup each night before bed, to learn how, follow our in-depth guide on how to remove makeup.

How to Remove Blackheads

Bye-bye blackheads – say hello to clear, healthy-looking skin

There are a number of ways of how to get rid of blackheads on nose and face. Although it is tempting to squeeze them, doing so as a method of blackhead removal is likely to introduce bacteria into the open follicle and encourage a breakout.

Use skincare products that suit your skin type to make sure you are giving your skin exactly what it needs. If you have oily skin, go for a light face cream that moisturises without blocking the pores such as NIVEA 24h Mattifying Day Cream. For dry skin, use a more hydrating moisturiser such as NIVEA Nourishing 24h Moisture Day Cream SPF 15. Learn more about different skin types here.

No matter what your skin type is, for how to remove blackheads, it is important to exfoliate and use face masks regularly. Because blackheads are caused by blocked follicles, you want to pay special attention to "trouble areas" on the forehead, nose and chin. When using an exfoliating face scrub such as NIVEA Daily Essentials Gentle Exfoliating Scrub, gently massage it into the skin in circular motions.

nivea peel-off urban skin detox mask

How to Get Rid of Blackheads on Nose & Face: Peel-Off Face Mask

As well as using face scrubs, for how to get rid of blackheads on nose and face you can use a peel-off face mask such as NIVEA Peel-Off Urban skin Detox Mask. These help to go deep into the follicles and extract blackheads and dead skin cells. For an immediately visible result.

how to remove blackheads

How to Remove Blackheads and Banish Them from Returning

Follow these skincare tips for blackhead extraction from the nose and face so you can feel more confident about your skin:

how to remove blackheads

7 Tips for How to Remove Blackheads & Keep Them Away

  1. Always remove your makeup before going to bed
  2. Use a face mask once a week such as NIVEA Peel-Off Urban Skin Detox Mask with Black Rice and Green Tea Extract to thoroughly cleanse and remove dead skin cells for a fresh look and deep blackhead extraction
  3. Wash your face twice a day with a daily face wash such as NIVEA Daily Essentials Refreshing Facial Wash Gel to keep your skin gently cleansed, as well as exfoliating 2-3 times a week with a face scrub.
  4. Keep hydrated - drink plenty of water and unsweetened teas
  5. Treat yourself to a facial every now and then to keep your skin bright and clear
  6. Wash your face well after exercise to remove any sweat and excess oils
  7. Use a daily cleanser that helps skin to retain its moisture balance such as NIVEA Naturally Good Milky Face Cleanser to ensure you thoroughly remove impurities and makeup from your face at the end of the day

how to remove blackheads

Soothing Your Skin After Blackhead Removal

Once you have got all the build up out of your follicles and completed your blackhead removal routine, it is imperative to close your pores again to help prevent more skin debris from blocking them.

To make sure there is no residual oil or removed blackheads sitting on your skin, wash and cleanse your face, following with a toner such as NIVEA Daily Essentials Refreshing Toner.

Just as heat helps to open pores, cold and cool water can help to close them. Finish off your blackhead skincare routine by splashing cold water on your face.

Pat your face dry with a towel and apply a moisturiser that is suitable to your skin needs and type. If you're not sure which moisturiser is best for you, have a read of our best moisturiser for your skin type article which will help you understand what to look for in a moisturiser.


Moisturise from the inside

Drinking plenty of water or unsweetened tea nourishes the body with essential minerals and vitamins.

Enjoy vitamin A!

For clear skin make sure spinach, carrots, kale, papaya, honeydew melon and sweet potato feature regularly in your diet.

The power of antioxidants

Cacao contains numerous active ingredients, such as antioxidative polyphenols that can neutralise harmful free radicals in your body. Dark chocolate can protect your skin from harmful substances – so snack on!

For your overall wellbeing: Vitamin C

Vitamin C is essential to produce collagen. The result is a bright complexion. Citrus fruit, broccoli and soya bean sprouts are particularly rich in vitamin C. These foods also have a low glycemic load.

Unsaturated fatty acids

Omega-3 and omega-6 are unsaturated fatty acids that keep your skin smooth and healthy. Salmon, nuts and olive oil contain particularly high amounts of unsaturated fatty acids.



  • Blackheads can occur on your ears and chest but are most common on your face and nose
  • Blackheads are the result of your hair follicles or pores getting blocked with skin cells and oil
  • The occurrence of blackheads depends on your age, skin type and the skincare products you use
  • Blackheads are also linked to your lifestyle habits such as eating, drinking and exercising 


  • Squeezing blackheads is an effective way of removing them
  • Blackheads are a result of poor hygiene
  • Blackheads are always black in colour
  • Blackheads are caused by bacteria

The best cleansing and skincare products to combat blackheads