What Are the Best Tips for Popping Whiteheads?

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  • Written By: Lainie Petersen
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 05 December 2019
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The best tips for popping whiteheads include making sure that the blemish is actually ready to be popped, cleansing and drying the affected area before treatment, and using appropriate tools, such as a comedome extractor. Another option is to visit a professional, such as an aesthetician or dermatologist, who is an expert in popping whiteheads. Finally, to prevent further breakouts, it is always a good idea to apply an acne medication to the skin after popping the pimples.

Some types of acne cannot and should not be popped or squeezed, so it is important for acne sufferers to carefully examine their blemishes before popping them. The first thing that they should look for is the actual whitehead, which looks like a small, white bump. If the blemish does not have this bump, it should not be popped. Instead, the acne sufferer should use an over-the-counter acne medication to treat it or consult with his or her physician.

Prior to popping whiteheads, it's important to gently clean the skin. This can help the process along by sloughing off dead cells. The cleaning should be gentle, however, as one doesn't want to irritate the blemish. After cleansing, the skin should be dried thoroughly, but gently, with a clean towel.


There are two different tools that can be used for popping whiteheads. The first is a commercial comedome extractor, sometimes known as a blackhead remover. These can typically be purchased in drugstores and may be found in the skincare and cosmetics department. The other option is to simply use two cotton swabs, one placed on each side of the whitehead, for the extraction.

The acne sufferer should use very gentle pressure when popping whiteheads. If the whitehead does not burst after a few attempts, it is simply not ready for extraction. The use of topical acne medication after the extraction can help encourage healing. As there may be some skin redness after the extraction, some people may also decide to use a concealer on the area to minimize its appearance.

In cases where whiteheads do not appear on acne blemishes, it is very important to not pop or squeeze the affected area. Doing this can make matters worse by increasing redness and the risk of infection. Other problems can include creating scars and scabs that can negatively affect the skin's appearance. A physician should treat stubborn acne that does not respond to a good skincare regimen and over-the-counter blemish treatments.


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