A blind pimple is a disaster waiting to happen if not treated right (been there, done that)…
Luckily this page has everything you need to know to avoid that fate, plus how to get rid of it as fast and as smoothly as possible!
- The best treatment for a blind pimple depends on the stage you’ve found it at: early when it is still developing, or later when it is closer to the surface
- The number one thing you can do is to ice it
- Drawing it to a head helps, and sometimes you can squeeze it
- If you determine the causes, you can help prevent them from forming
- Details about all of the above and more below!
They are “blind pimples” because they have no head.
More painful and larger than your average pimple because the inflammation is so deep in the pore, closer to the nerves. At least in the beginning they are usually just a big brewing bump under the skin.
A little whitehead close to the surface can be squeezed, but blind pimples require a different approach…
This page will show you how to get rid of pimples under the skin, without causing a bigger mess.
When Treating a Blind Pimple There Are Two Stages to Know About:
1) The early stage – developing as a red, sore lump deep in the skin – the best time to treat it!
2) The later stage – if it’s forming a head, the aim is to draw it to a head and treat it on the surface
Treatment Requires Patience and a Careful Approach…
– Trying to squeeze one will result in a big, painful mess
– Drying one out will simply dry out the surrounding skin and cause irritation
It will usually make its way to the surface of the skin and eventually and form a head, where it then behaves like a normal whitehead.
The best treatment for a blind pimple depends on the stage it’s at.
Let’s get to it…
1. The Early Stage – Still Forming
First, a deep red spot develops, usually painful and you just know something is brewing beneath your skin.
If this is the stage you’ve noticed it, there’s a good chance you can stop it in its tracks, reducing its intensity or making it disappear altogether. So…
As Soon As You Notice One Developing:
- ICE IT. This is the single best tip for treating a deep pimple. Ice reduces blood flow to the area, inhibits swelling and reduces pain—one of the best natural skin care tips to keep in your arsenal
- Persistence is key. Ice the pimple for 5mins on, 10mins off for at least an hour. Time consuming, but it really does help
- Up your water and fresh fruit, breathe deeply and get adequate rest. Any extra steps to flush out toxins and provide anti-inflammatory action helps
Remember, if you want to really know how to get rid of a pimple, the answer is: ice. The more ice, the less inflammation.
The less inflammation, the less pain, redness, and duration!
Reduce Inflammation with a Clay Mask
Apply a topical clay mask directly to the spot. This can reduce redness, pain and life span.
If you can leave it on overnight, even better!
Plus if the pimple is further along than the beginning stages, icing may not be able to stop it. A good clay mask will draw it to the surface of the skin while reducing inflammation.
This can result in a smaller pimple on the surface which is much easier to deal with.
Applied overnight, a clay mask is an easy spot treatment for any type of pimple.
A simple and affordable product is Freeman’s Feeling Beautiful Clay Mask. This has kaolin and bentonite clay as the top ingredients – both good for acne treatment.
2. The Later Stage – Developing a Head
It is still deep, red and painful, but it’s further along and starting to develop a whitehead.
The only way is up from now on, so draw it to the surface and treat it there:
- Gently clean your skin with your usual cleanser
- Use a warm cotton ball or cloth as a warm compress—as hot as you can stand without burning your skin
- Hold it on the top of the spot for a few minutes, keeping the warm compress as hot as you can, on and off a few times to draw the pimple out
Once it is drawn to a head, use your better judgement for the best treatment. Often they are still too tender and inflamed to be squeezed at this stage.
(Err on the side of caution, usually a blind pimple should never be squeezed at all as it is more likely to scar due to the inflammation).
Use Salicylic Acid
Salicylic acid is one of the best ingredients for acne. This BHAs small molecules are able to get into the pores and provide a deep exfoliation.
It is also slightly drying and anti-bacterial—a perfect pimple-fighting combination.
Apply salicylic acid directly to the pimple up to three times a day. This will help shrink and “soften” it if you decide to pop it.
Another Option: Benzoyl Peroxide
Benzoyl peroxide is a great short term treatment for pimples and acne. Short term because it works by drying out your skin and can therefore make it worse over the long term.
Apply some BP directly to the pimple. This should help shorten its lifespan.
Apply Tea Tree Oil
Dab some diluted tea tree oil on top of the pimple (add one to two drops to a carrier oil such as almond or jojoba).
You can do this twice a day, and if you have attempted a squeeze it is even more important. Tea tree oil is naturally anti-biotic, and the carrier oil helps prevent too much drying which can cause scars.
What About a Cortisone Injection?
You might think getting an emergency pimple injection is something only done for actresses before the Oscars. But no, this is an option for all of us (money aside).
Your dermatologist can inject cortisone into the spot, which helps greatly reduce the inflammation, swelling and lifespan.
This is probably not something you want to do all the time, but is an option if you can feel one brewing before an important event.
What Causes Deep Blind Pimples?
Knowing how to treat a blind pimple is great, but if you get them frequently you will benefit from trying to understand the cause.
Pimples form when sebum and dead skin cells mix with bacteria on the surface if skin. The inflammation you see and feel is your body fighting that infection.
Simple “surface” pimples are often caused by blockages on the skin, like makeup or dead skin cells (this is why exfoliation can work so well!) But blind pimples usually form deeper, from a reaction rather than a blockage.
What does this mean?
- If a product you are using is too rich it may cause your skin to react
- Hormones can cause blind pimples, formed from “within”. These usually appear along your jawline or chin, sometimes on a regular schedule in the same place, every month!
- The cause of blind pimples can be harder to deal with since there are so many possibilities. The good news is you can narrow things down (how to below)
- The really good news is no matter what causes yours, the treatments on this page all work!
Where is it? Location Matters
Is it on your chin, jawline, or cheeks? This can give you important clues!
Blind pimples just love to form on the chin. Often you are dealing with one that appears in the same place, as if there is an “x marks the spot” where it just keeps coming back on the regular.
Start tracking it: make a note of the day you start to feel it brewing under your skin. Also note how long it lasts and when it finally goes away or stops hurting – which is usually when it is finished and just needs to disappear.
(By the way, taking simple notes is a great way to get the most out of your skin care in general!)
After a month or two you should notice a pattern. For example:
- A blind pimple forms within two days of a sugar overload
- Stress from work, exams, life…. results in an eruption. Stress pimples are usually the ones that form in the same place on your chin, this might be your “stress spot”
- Women may notice the pimple(s) forming within a few days of starting their period (this is usually like clockwork)
- Product reaction. Sometimes a topical product is just wrong for your skin. It’s usually obvious— if you’ve just started a new product, stop using it and see if your skin clears up.
What to do about it:
Based on any pattern you observe, adjust. Sugar is okay to eat but if you notice a pattern try to avoid eating a lot in a short amount of time. In all cases, drink a lot of water during and after.
Dealing with stress can be trickier. Get the support you need and look after your body, but sometimes it is a matter of waiting the circumstance out.
If you notice your chin erupts like clockwork around your period, you are not alone!
Around this time increase your water intake, get a lot of sleep, and use ice as soon as you notice any sign of that familiar feeling. If the blind pimples are large and painful, see your doctor as he/she may suggest the contraceptive pill or another treatment.
If you get blind pimples along your jawline, you know how painful they are. There is less “padding” in this area, so these ones are extra difficult. They can also distort your jawline as they swell and cause bumps. Not a happy look 🙁
- A common cause of jawline pimples in women is a hormonal imbalance. This is the “male area” (think beard). It can be associated with certain contraceptives like the hormonal IUD.
CHEEKS AND FOREHEAD:
Deep pimples under the skin aren’t as common on the forehead as this area is thin. However, large ones on the cheeks are common, and can be very painful and really hard to cover up.
The causes in this area are less defined. However in my experience it is often due to either hormones or products. See the advice above to deal with these.
A word of warning about blind pimples on the cheek: these inflame easily. Try your hardest to avoid squeezing them, otherwise you can end up with a lump that is twice the size and incredibly sore. Take some Ibuprofen or other anti inflammatory if needed (ask your doc).
Use the ice and warm compresses. Cover it up with concealer and powder, and know it will be gone in a few days!
What is the Best Blind Pimple Treatment for you?
- If you’ve successfully drawn it to a head, the white will appear closer to the surface of the skin
- Squeeze it – very carefully and only if the inflammation has completely reduced. You can usually tell as it looks like it’s about to pop on its own!
- Remember: ice is your friend. It is often better to prevent the “spot with no head” from ever forming a head. Stop it in its tracks!
- If you get these often, especially on the chin and along the jawline, consider a hormonal cause and see your doc.