What Causes Whiteheads? What To Do To Prevent Future Breakouts?

by GorgeousGirl Staff, Updated December 18, 2022
What Causes Whiteheads? What To Do To Prevent Future Breakouts?

What causes whiteheads? Annoying as it may be, there are plenty of reasons for the growth of blackheads, and some of them are our own fault! Ouch! I know this may sting a little, but, we have some unnoticed habits that sabotage our beauty!

To better understand how to get rid of them and prevent them from coming back, let’s get to know how they are formed.


How Whiteheads Form


How Whiteheads Form


Comedo or blocked hair follicle is the root of whiteheads and blackheads. When the skin pore is blocked by skin debris (keratin, dead skin cells), and sebum, a comedo is formed. When the blockage reaches the opening of the skin pore, the sebum mixed with skin debris is exposed to oxygen and gets oxidized. This oxidation turns the blockage black, thus, black heads (open comedo).

When the blockage remains encapsulated by a thin layer of skin, the sebum beneath will not be oxidized and retain its original white color, thus, whiteheads (closed comedo).

Whatever their color is, they are both annoying and aesthetically displeasing. The blockage is not at all that threatening aside from its distasteful appearance. But, it’s presence invites acne and pimples! When these blocked hair follicles get infected, acne and pimples take place!


Factors That Cause Whitehead


Wouldn’t it be awesome if we can control the growth of whiteheads and blackheads at will? Right? I bet you would never have them come back, ever! Unfortunately, there are factors that are out of our control. We could influence them a bit, but we can’t command them!






The most common cause of whitehead formation is puberty. Puberty is something we have all been through, and we can’t do anything about it. At this stage of life, our body is transitioning from childhood to young adulthood. Our bodies are not yet adept in regulating our hormones and tend to over produce some.

The result, emotional teens with oily faces, acne, and anxiety! Whiteheads grow too quick because of the increase in oil production which leads to acne and pimples! Yikes! If you have been through your puberty without experiencing this, I envy you!



Menstruation, Pregnancy, and Menopause


No wonder the female species are more prone to whiteheads, blackheads, acnes, and pimples. Menstruation, pregnancy, and menopausal are three phases in a woman’s life where hormones spike in all direction. After puberty, these conditions may trigger Whitehead and acne formation!
For some fortunate others, these conditions have regulated their hormones to optimum and eventually had the best skin conditions of their lives.






Aside from the unstable hormones, genetics play an important (and unavoidable) role in Whitehead formation. Some people have this gene that makes them produce oil more than average. If you do possess this gene, you may need extra skin care to prevent your pores from getting clogged!




Finally, this is a factor that you can take full control of. Our skin is full of tiny pores. If you are living or working in a dusty environment, chances are, you may grow more whiteheads than most people do. Get these dust off, and you have eliminated one factor!


Failing To Wash the Face as Needed


Failing To Wash The Face As Needed


If you are naturally oily, you are more prone to having whiteheads! The oil you produce, mixed with dust, and skin debris can easily clog your pores! Washing as needed can reduce the oil in the face and essentially reduce the chances of blocking the hair follicles.


Sleeping with Make-up On


I know some of you girls are guilty with this. And yeah, you would say you were so tired, and you have no time to take it off before going to sleep. I understand that you are hardworking, but leaving your make up on would cost you expensive skin treatment in the future!

Save up by taking good care of your skin now! Prevent clogging your pores by taking off your make-up before you sleep! The chemicals in these, beauty products can block your skin pores and may even lead to infection!



How to Prevent Acne and Pimples


How To Prevent Acne And Pimples


Obviously, the straight answer to preventing acne and pimples from ever coming back is to prevent your pores from getting clogged. Well, it’s a bit more complicated in the actual application. But, you can do it!

If you already have an acne breakout, the best acne treatment can be prescribed by a licensed dermatologist. Do seek an expert for the best solution. You may need some acne scar treatment or acne scar removal afterward to bring your skin to its previous radiant glow.


Now, to prevent them, here are a few tricks


  • Do not deprive yourself of sleep: Lack of sleep sabotages your hormonal equilibrium. Get enough sleep, and soon you will notice your whiteheads decrease and eventually go away.
  • Wash your face as needed.: Oil is the number one cause of clogged skin pore. If you can regularly wash your face, you can prevent them oil from building up. In case there is no available washroom all the time, an oil blotting paper can do a good job too!
  • Get rid of the dust in the environment!: It would be impossible to get rid of all the dust. But taking most away with a vacuum cleaner can make a huge difference. If you have allergies, you can use a damp cloth to wipe dusty surfaces! Your skin (and your nose!) will surely thank you for that!
  • Avoid oil based products: The reason behind that Whitehead is oil blockage. If you are using products that contain high amounts of oil, you are aggravating the situation! Avoid using oil based lotions and moisturizers as much as you can.



Now that you know which things can be modified and which things cannot, you are now one step ahead of the game! Do keep in mind that regular visit to the dermatologists’ clinic will help you understand how to best take care of your skin!

Do not hesitate to leave the difficult questions to the experts! They have spent a huge number of hours in their trade so they could cater your unique needs!

Hope you find the post helpful and we excited to hear what you think of it!

By Gorgeousgirl Staff

At GorgeousGirl, our staff is a collection of highly skilled cosmetologists, estheticians, and higher education professionals. Our personnel works together to satisfy your fancies.