What are closed comedones?

Closed comedones, otherwise called whiteheads, are essentially obstructed pores covered by skin. Each pore all over is home to a hair follicle and your body normally delivers something many refer to as sebum to keep that hair follicle saturated and sound.

However, assuming the sebum, dead skin cells or microscopic organisms obstructs that pore, the blockage can cause skin inflammation. Here’s beginning and end you really want to know about closed comedones, open comedones, and everything in the middle.

This article discusses closed comedones and why you have them on your skin. It also discusses how you can get rid of them.

How do comedones structure?

Each and every pore in your skin is really home to a singular hair follicle. Regularly, our bodies produce a characteristic cream called sebum to keep the hair follicle sound.

Yet, once in a while, abundance sebum, soil, or dead skin cells can hinder this initial causing the arrangement of comedones and skin break out.


Closed comedones
Closed comedones



Closed comedones look like little bumps across the skin’s surface. They’re not red and inflamed like your typical pimple, and they don’t hurt.

A closed comedo develops when a plug of skin cells and oil becomes trapped within the hair follicle, the tunnel-like structure that hair grows from. The plug fills the follicle, causing it to swell and creating that bump you see on your skin.

Closed comedones can happen anywhere on the skin. But they most often pop up on the face, neck, chest, and back.

Some comedones are open. They are also known as blackheads. But in closed comedones, the pore openings are blocked. The oil plug is not exposed to air, so it doesn’t turn a brown or black color.

In fact, some closed comedones develop a very obvious white head.1 If bacteria invade or the follicle wall ruptures, closed comedones can develop into inflamed pimples.





Some people are more likely to develop comedones than others. Everyone gets closed comedones every now and then. But if you have a lot of them, and they’re fairly constant, you probably have a type of acne called comedonal acne.

Closed comedones are really common during the tween and teen years. This is because when you are a pre-teen or a teenager, the skin’s sebaceous glands (also known as oil glands) speed up production.With all that extra oil, comedones are more likely to form.

Teens aren’t the only people who get these blemishes. They’re also common in adults with oily skin. Some studies suggest that smokers are more likely to develop closed comedones, too.

Certain products that you put on your skin might be contributing to these blemishes. Heavy creams and lotions often clog pores and cause skin problems. Makeup, especially oil-based products, can also do it.

If your breakouts are mostly around the hairline, you might want to take a closer look at your hair products. They might be triggering your blemishes.

Work on your skincare schedule

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Certain individuals appreciate child smooth skin from the day they’re brought into the world with just a periodic pimple, while others are tormented with skin inflammation from pubescence straight through to adulthood and on.

So what’s the arrangement? There are certain things that increment your possibility creating skin break out :

Skin type: Some individuals normally produce more sebum, making it more probable for pores to get stopped up.

Chemicals: High levels of specific chemicals, similar to testosterone, can build how much sebum your body produces, making it more probable for you to have a break out.

Changes in chemicals, which are more normal in pubescence, pregnancy and when you get your period, can likewise prompt breakouts.

Inflammation: some people experience additional irritation from the normal microorganisms on their skin, making skin inflammation structure.


What are the treatment choices for comedones?

The most effective way to treat comedones is with topical treatments (applied straight forwardly to the skin) containing benzoyl peroxide or a skin retinoid. Decide on a chemical, lotion, and treatment cream for spot treatment.

There are a lot of fantastic over-the-counter choices that work for mild to direct acne or infrequent flare-ups accessible at any neighborhood pharmacy or drug store. The most common side effects are skin dryness and disturbance, related regularly with abuse.


Effective retinoids (adapalene or tretinoin)

Skin retinoids are the suggested first-line treatment for comedones. Gotten from vitamin A, these medicines keep the skin clear by advancing normal peeling, getting out dead skin cells, and keeping your pores clean.

They additionally assist with battling irritation and quiet the skin. Protected and successful, effective retinoids are the go-to proposal of dermatologists for whiteheads .

While utilizing these medicines, your skin might be more touchy to daylight. Consider restricting these items to evening time utilization and applying sunscreen during the day (regardless of whether you burn through a large portion of the day inside).


Benzoyl peroxide

Benzoyl peroxide is another viable treatment for whiteheads, pimples, and all out acne alike. It works by separating dead skin cells and hindering the development of microbes.

Certain brands have recipes that join benzoyl peroxide with an effective retinoid or anti-microbial, as clindamycin, for more compelling outcomes (Zaenglein, 2016).

Azelaic acid

Azelaic acid is an elective skin break out treatment, frequently utilized for pimples that have become excited and irritated.

Azelaic acid may also help treat dull patches known as hyperpigmentation which can show up in individuals who have customary flare-ups (Davis, 2010).

Would it be advisable for me to pop them?

It’s enticing, however do whatever it takes not to. Crushing whiteheads can aggravate them by causing disease or scarring. Contacting your face additionally builds the possibility growing more episodes.

In any case, in the event that you should press them (and we’ve all been there), the following are a couple of tips to remember:


Mature whiteheads are more straightforward to fly, as they are nearer to the skin. You can determine whether a whitehead has developed by its white tip.

As the whitehead develops, the tip becomes white as your body’s insusceptible cells assault and kill the microorganisms caught in the pore.

Assuming that the whitehead looks furious and red, let it be. It’s not prepared at this point to pop. On the off chance that you attempt to pop a juvenile whitehead, you can make harm the skin, expanding the possibility fostering a contamination or scarring .

Hot and cold

Applying warm packs to the whitehead can help its development, as hotness further develops flow to the area. Applying cold packs or ice subsequent to pressing the whitehead can assist with decreasing aggravation and bothering nearby.

Spotless and dry

Keep up with legitimate hand cleanliness prior to contacting your face. You should utilize sterile gloves, which can be bought at drug stores. After you pop the whitehead, keep the region perfect and dry.

Decently well, try not to contact the region subsequently to assist with limiting the possibilities of disease and scarring.

How else might I forestall and treat comedones?

Beauty care products

Beauty care products can be a famous offender with regards to stopping up pores. While buying beauty care products, search for brands that are named “non-comedogenic,” meaning they are liberated from overabundance oil or pore-stopping up fixings.


The relationship between diet and acne has been fervently challenged for a very long time. We’ve presumably totally found out about greasy food varieties and chocolate causing breakouts. However, the jury is still out.

The latest proof has been for avoiding cow’s milk and sugary food varieties, which appear to cause breakouts for specific individuals . Eating dark chocolate may deteriorate existing skin break out .

How treats this eventually mean? There isn’t sufficient exploration yet to make routine dietary proposals for everybody. What you may view as supportive, in any case, is keeping a log of your eating routine and checking whether any food sources aggravate your skin inflammation.

Solution medicines

On the off chance that your skin break out will not disappear or has deteriorated, original potency skin break out medicines might help. These can incorporate oral anti-microbials, anti-toxin salves, oral prophylactic pills for ladies, and isotretinoin.

Effective anti-toxins

Skin anti-toxins are applied straightforwardly to the skin and come in gels, balms, and creams. The standard effective anti-toxin is clindamycin . For ideal outcomes, effective clindamycin is normally joined with benzoyl peroxide.

Oral anti-toxins

Oral anti-toxins are more grounded than their skin cousins and are powerful in the treatment of aggravated skin inflammation. Normal anti-toxins endorsed for skin inflammation include doxycycline and azithromycin.

Oral anti-infection agents are typically given in blend with skin medicines. Subsequent to beginning anti-toxins, it’s really smart to check in with your medical care supplier after around 90 days. Assuming your skin break out has improved, they might suggest halting the anti-infection.

From that point on, skin medicines alone are powerful in keeping your skin clear after an underlying time of anti-microbials.

Remaining on anti-infection agents for quite a while is certifiably not a smart thought, as microbes can become impervious to the medicine.

Anti-toxins additionally have side effects: doxycycline, for instance, can make your skin more delicate to light, cause stomach hurts, and that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

Joined oral contraceptives

Joined oral contraceptives, or birth control pills, are a compelling skin break out treatment for certain individuals. These prescriptions contain the chemicals estrogen and progesterone and help regulate chemical changes in your body that add to breakouts.

A few ladies ought not take consolidated oral contraceptives, particularly ladies with a background marked by blood clumps, stroke, coronary illness, current bosom malignant growth, or ladies who are pregnant .


Oral isotretinoin is a drug utilized for the most serious skin inflammation cases with difficult pimples and scarring. In any case, it can have a few genuine aftereffects, which incorporate dry skin, nosebleeds, muscle torment, and vision changes.

Isotretinoin can likewise cause premature delivery and serious birth surrenders in pregnant ladies .

Therefore, your medical services supplier will necessitate that you utilize some structure of birth control while taking the medicine.

Like skin retinoids, isotretinoin can likewise make your skin more delicate to daylight and you should utilize sunscreen generously to ensure your skin while taking this prescription.

Prior to recommending isotretinoin, your medical services supplier will examine the iPledge risk decrease program with you. They may likewise suggest routine blood tests like cholesterol testing to screen for incidental effects while you are taking isotretinoin .

Others Treatments

Closed comedones can be super annoying, but you can treat them. If you have mild bumpiness and minor breakouts, you can first try an over-the-counter (OTC) acne treatment product.


Over-the-Counter Treatments

Over-the-counter salicylic acid or glycolic acid are ingredients that speed up the shedding of dead skin cells, and they help keep pores from getting clogged.

Over-the-counter products take some time to work. Try them for at least eight weeks before expecting to see improvement in the way your skin looks.


Prescription Medications

If you have more than just a few closed comedones, or if you’ve been battling these bumps for a long time, you’ll want to see a dermatologist (skin doctor) for prescription medication.

Topical retinoids are a great choice and most likely what your dermatologist will have you try first.5 These medications include:

  • Retin-A
    Retin-A Micro

They help clear out existing pore blockages and keep new ones from forming. They also have the added benefit of smoothing and softening the skin.

Other treatments that your dermatologist might suggest are azelaic acid or benzoyl peroxide. For women, birth control pills (when used along with topical treatments) can also help keep those closed comedones from showing up on their skin.



Blemish extractions can also be helpful. This is where a dermatologist or esthetician uses their fingers or a special tool called a comedone extractor to remove the plug causing the blemish.

Extractions don’t keep closed comedones from forming. You’ll still need a treatment to prevent them from coming back. But they can help jump-start your treatment. They also may make the skin look better while you’re waiting for your comedonal acne treatments to work.



Closed comedones are tiny bumps that show up on your skin. They’re a type of acne blemish that is common in tweens, teens, and adults with oily skin.

If you have a mild case of closed comedones, you can use an over-the-counter treatment. If it’s more severe, you may need to see your doctor. Doctors may prescribe topical creams to help get rid of your closed comedones and keep them from coming back.

A dermatologist or esthetician can also manually extract those tiny bumps to help your skin look smoother while you wait for
the topical treatments to work.

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