If you want to pop, just say “Stop!” It is never a good idea to pop pimples. Popping pimples only causes acne scars—and sometimes you won’t even be able to pop the pimple, you will miss. Getting rid of pimples takes time. This article tells you why popping pimples is a bad idea and what you need to do instead.
Popping pimples forces bacteria into surrounding tissues under the skin. When the skin grows over them, the result is an even worse acne problem known as a cyst.
The best way to get rid of pimples is to treat them with benzoyl peroxide or tea tree oil gels and creams.
If you can stop the production of whiteheads and blackheads, you won’t have worry about pimples.
Why Popping Pimples Is a Bad Idea
A pimple is an inflamed pore. The bacteria that cause acne ordinarily live just inside the pore, consuming excess sebum. Their metabolisms slow down when they are exposed to oxygen.
Acne causes the skin around the opening of a pore to tighten. This traps acne inside. The acne continue to feed on sebum, growing and multiplying, but they do not flow out to the surface of the skin. They release chemicals that make skin cells very sensitive to immune system attacks, but they do not inflame the skin. Actually, it is the immune system that does that. As long as the walls of the pore are intact, the chemical messengers that tell the immune system “Kill! Destroy!” do not reach the bloodstream.
When you squeeze a pimple, however, you injure the wall of the pore. The inflammation signals produced by the acne bacteria reach the bloodstream, and the immune system creates more inflammation, not less. If you squeeze out what looks like pus and oil, your skin will grow over the wound, trapping the bacteria inside. With no pore wall to separate them from the bloodstream, they send out constant signals calling for immune destruction. Instead of a nasty pimple on your skin, you soon have a nasty cyst or nodule in your skin. Popping pimples is never a good idea.
What to Do Instead
Don’t try to get rid of pimples. Let your skin take care of that on its own. Instead, aim to eliminate inflammation. If you are short on cash and need to zap a zit fast, there is always MOM.
MOM, however, is milk of magnesia. This common white liquid laxative can be dabbed on a pimple to take the red out right away. Your pimple will be less visible from about 5 seconds after you apply the MOM until something washes the milk of magnesia off your skin, but you can easily reapply this simple home remedy. It also makes pimples less itchy
Probably, however, you want something that does more than paint over your pimple. There are two good choices for about $10. One is benzoyl peroxide. The other tea tree oil. Both are applied as creams or gels.
Benzoyl peroxide is the world’s most frequently purchased antiseptic for the skin. A chemical product, it foams and fizzes and kills acne bacteria in two different ways. One of the components of benzoyl peroxide is hydrogen peroxide. It releases oxygen, which slows down or even kills acne bacteria.
The other component of benzoyl peroxide is a substance called benzoic acid. This acid makes it impossible for acne bacteria to use glucose as their cellular fuel. Even if they survive, they have to go into a dormant state.
Benzoyl peroxide is great for killing bacteria. It’s not so great for clearing up your face. It does not remove redness from pimples. Most people get dry, flaky skin, at least for the first week they use it. And some people who use benzoyl peroxide actually have worse redness and inflammation due to the chemical than they do from their acne.
Tea tree oil is an herbal extract that also kills acne bacteria, although it takes about a day longer to do the job. Unlike benzoyl peroxide, it also makes pimples lighter and less noticeable right away. Because tea tree oil is a plant product, however, some people will be allergic to it. And neither benzoyl peroxide nor tea tree oil does anything for whiteheads or blackheads.
Stopping Pimples Before They Start
If you want to stop pimples before they start, you will need to stop the formation of the whiteheads and blackheads that trap the infection that becomes a pimple. To do this you need to keep pores open, but how?
You can’t scrub your acne away. In fact, scrubbing your face to get rid of whiteheads and blackheads is almost as bad for your skin as popping pimples. But you can stop the accumulation of sebum.
To prevent the buildup of oily sebum, you need the right cleanser to remove excess oil from your pores. You also need the right exfoliant to loosen up your skin around pores, removing dead skin and debris that can keep skin tight and wrinkly. You will also need a moisturizer to lock moisture in your skin so it does not accumulate too much oil on your skin.
The one thing you can know for sure about your cleanser is that it won’t lather up like bubble bath. The bigger the bubble, the more it can dry out your skin. Drying out your the moisture in (not on) your skin shrinks pores and traps oil and bacteria.
Good cleansers don’t look all that impressive on your face. They form a creamy lather of tiny bubbles. They clean your face but they don’t leave it feeling tingly. In fact, any product that you can still feel on your face after you rinse it off has probably damaged your skin.
Benzoyl peroxide is an exfoliant, but you will get better results from using either alpha-hydroxy acids or beta-hydroxy acids. Alpha-hydroxy acids are natural compounds found in fruit or milk. They are desirable on fair, dry skin. The beta-hydroxy acid used in skin care is salicylic acid. It is the active ingredient in aspirin. It’s great for relieving redness and irritation, and it is desirable on darker, oilier skin. Then you will need to moisturize—even if you have oily skin. The objective of moisturizing is not to put water on your skin. Some of the most expensive moisturizers contain collagen, which plumps on your face and makes it look nice and moist, until the very first moment you sweat or wash them off.
The objective of moisturizing is to get water into your skin. The best ingredient to add water to your skin is, believe it or not, water. A lot of “moisturizers” contain alcohol, which actually makes skin dry.