Using a blackhead extractor tool is one of the easiest, quickest ways to remove those annoying blockages. Find out exactly how to use one the right way in this article.
These cheap small metal tools are such an easy thing to add to your “blackhead eliminating” routine. They’re often used in facials to quickly extract a large area and can be less damaging than squeezing.
Particularly good for nose blackheads—the metal loop can be pressed into the side of the nose where no finger can get to. There’s less pressure needed so you won’t end up with a misshapen nose at the end.
(See the video after these instructions for a visual demonstration)
Jump ahead to:
How to Use a Blackhead Extractor
Remember: be gentle…
Steps to extract blackheads:
- Cleanse your face with warm water, and hold a warm face cloth to the area for a few seconds to open up the pores. Steam your face if possible over a bowl of hot water, or do so after a shower.
- Place the loop end of the extractor over the blackhead you want to extract.
- Gently press down on one side of the blackhead—move the tool across the top (think of spreading icing on a cake…ew!) The loop isn’t there to press straight down, but to use gentle pressure from one side to ease the blackhead out—which should come out as a satisfying “plug.”
- Cleanse your skin again, then apply toner and moisturizer.
- Wash the tool in hot soapy water and allow to air dry, or wipe with alcohol (easy!)
Here is a good demonstration video (starts at 18secs):
How to Use a Blackhead Remover for Nose Blackheads
First, use on cleansed skin. A glycolic acid exfoliator can help dissolve surface oil and dead skin cells, and help “open” the pore for easier removal.
To use the extractor for nose blackheads, you will need to adjust the angle.
You might not be able to get the whole loop over blockages right in the side of your nose. Instead, use the edge of the loop and ease it out, again “scraping” across the top.
Always clean the tool after every use to prevent bacteria from growing on it. Remove any gunk with a tissue, then wash it in hot soapy water and allow to air dry.
You can also rub hand sanitizer on it once dry for further anti bacterial protection.
A Fast Way to Remove Blackheads
It can be slightly addicting… once you get the hang of using one you’ll wonder how you managed with out it. There’s a reason why they are used so much in professional facials!
Blackhead Extractor FAQs
Do blackhead vacuums work?
If only! Blackheads are sticky plugs of dead skin cells and sebum—trying to suck them out with a vacuum might work for a few loose ones but otherwise there are far more successful and cheaper ways to get rid of them!
Using a blackhead extractor left dents in my skin, is this permanent damage?
A blackhead remover can leave loop shaped dents on your skin. These are temporary. However it is really important to be gentle; you don’t need a lot of pressure.
If you need to really press down on one particular blackhead…. stop. Carry on with cleansing and exfoliating for a few days and come back to that one!
These tools are metal after all and do have the potential to make a bigger dent than intended.
Why do I have holes in my skin after extracting blackheads?
These little holes do look strange! What you’re looking at is the clear pore.
These pin holes can be obvious especially if the former blackhead was “old” and large. It makes sense when you think about it: a plug has been sitting in that pore and it might not instantly shrink (or refill).
Don’t worry—these holes are temporary and by using an astringent after cleansing (witch hazel or toner) you can help to shrink them.
If you have larger pores naturally they may not disappear, but if they are kept clear then can “shrink” to their normal size. Blockages can stretch a pore if they sit in too long.
So, in the meantime you can hide these holes by applying concealer (just it off thoroughly later!). And see this article about how to minimize pores in the long run.
Can I use a comedone extractor on pimples too?
Absolutely—these tools can be used on sort of skin blockage. Using one on a whitehead pimple can help get rid of the gunk inside without doing extra damage.
It is extra important to only these tools on pimples that are not inflamed. Trying to squeeze new, red pimple is not only painful, it causes a bigger mess. See this article for important tips on popping a pimple.