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To Pick Or Not To Pick?

I get this question a lot, should I pick at my breakouts at home? Most estheticians you will talk to will most definitely say- no! Why is that so? There are a few reasons it is not recommended. 

  • It is not sanitary. Because of the potential bacteria on the hands before you begin to pick and also from the extracting of the pore, it is easy to spread it to other areas on the skin. Now you have another breakout, yay! 
  • You can create a scar. When you are popping a pimple or even trying to extract a black head which is simply bacteria and dirt trapped underneath the skin in a pore, you can damage the skin and it can lead to scarring. This can be permanent! I have a client who tried to extract a pore on her nose and the pore was damaged and literally doubled in size. 
  • You could leave part of the debris in the pore. If you do not know fully how to extract chances are you will not be able to extract the full amount. This can lead to more infection and longer healing time. So overall you basically are just making it worse. 

Not all breakouts on our skin are pimples. Pimples are what happen when we have trapped oil/sebum, bacteria that leads to infection and includes pus under the skin. Blackheads are not infections but trapped debris as well, these are safe to extract with a skin care professional. Milia/whiteheads usually need to be extracted with a needle to remove it from the skin because it is blocked. When extracted it looks like a tiny grain of sand. 

The reasons listed above include why we shouldn't pick at home but what is different in a skin care setting? 
  1. The therapist has a magnifying glass to really see what is going on.
  2. They have been trained on how to properly extract. 
  3. The skin is prepped, usually exfoliation to help soften the pores and make it easier to get the extractions handled and often steam. 
  4. The proper sanitation protocol is in place. 
  5. Estheticians live for this stuff, it's like the best part. 

What you can do at home:

EXFOLIATE! This should be done on a weekly basis depending on what product you are using. Exfoliating helps with the process of sloughing off dead skin and helps prevent the buildup of oil and bacteria. 

Use a spot treatment. Use a product you can sleep in at night, skin is regenerating faster at night so its the best time for a targeted treatment. It will help draw out impurities without agitation if you have the right one.

Do not dry it out. The problem with drying out the skin through using harsh ingredients while you have breakouts is the skin will want to produce more oil and cause more problems.

​Remember pimples can be very agitated and need to be treated with calming ingredients as well. Using something like UNDO serum is amazing for soothing and hydrating without adding oil and heavy ingredients to block the pore. Because of the inflammation in the pore, ingredients like Aloe Vera and Arnica help soothe the skin. 

So spill the beans, are you a picker?? Picture

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