Best Blackhead Removers

Updated November 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

20 Models Considered
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best blackhead removers

Last Updated November 2019

Blackheads – we’ve all gotten them, and we all hate them. These unsightly clogged hair follicles are not always easy to get rid of either. Luckily, blackhead removers offer quick extraction for clear skin again. However, there are dozens of masks, pore strips, manual tools, and even electric blackhead removers on the market, each claiming to be the most effective, the fastest, the least painful. It can be difficult to sort out the truth from the fluffy marketing hype. How do you choose the best blackhead remover for your skin type?

If you’re ready to purchase a blackhead remover, take a look at our product recommendations. For everything you need to know to banish blackheads once and for all, keep reading.

You can do more harm than good if you use a blackhead remover improperly. Make sure you read all the instructions thoroughly, and follow them to the letter.

Types of blackhead removers

There’s more than one way to remove a blackhead. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of the different types of blackhead removers.

Masks

Face masks that target blackheads are usually peel-off masks. Apply the mask for the recommended time. When you peel off the mask, your blackheads come with it.

Pros

  • Easy to use

  • Painless

  • May have additional benefits for your skin
     

Cons

  • Can be messy

  • Limited number of uses

Activated charcoal is one of the most popular ingredients in blackhead remover masks. It draws impurities to the surface of your skin and absorbs them, so they are removed with the mask.

Pore strips

Pore strips are adhesive strips that stick to your face when wet. The pore strip pulls out the blackheads when you peel it off.

Pros

  • No mess

  • Easy to use

  • Works quickly
     

Cons

  • Can be painful

  • May irritate sensitive skin

  • Limited number of uses

Manual tools

You can use manual tools to open up your pores and scoop out the debris that’s causing the blackheads. These tools are often sold in blackhead remover tool kits.

Pros

  • Unlimited number of uses

  • No mess

  • Tools for tackling different areas
     

Cons

  • Can be painful

  • Can exacerbate the problem if you don’t know what you’re doing

Don’t drag manual blackhead remover tools across your skin. Instead, gently press down, and apply light pressure until the blackhead is removed.

Electric blackhead removers

Electric blackhead removers are fairly new to the market. They work by suctioning the blackheads from your pores.

Pros

  • No mess

  • Works quickly

  • Unlimited number of uses
     

Cons

  • Expensive

  • Painful if not used correctly

  • May irritate sensitive skin

CAUTION

Electric blackhead removers can cause bruising if used incorrectly, so make sure you read the directions carefully.

What to consider when choosing a blackhead remover

Ingredients

If you’re looking at masks or pore strips, read the ingredient list closely to make sure the product isn’t going to dry out your skin or irritate it further. This is especially important for those who have sensitive or acne-prone skin.

You want to avoid any ingredient that’s going to clog your pores or strip your skin. It might sound like a good idea to get rid of the oil that’s already on your face. But stripping away natural oil can trigger your body to produce even more, which just makes the problem worse.

Some ingredients you may want to watch out for are

  • Mineral Oil: Clogs pores.

  • Petrolatum: Clogs pores.

  • Glycerin: Dries out skin.

  • Alcohol: Dries out skin.

Don’t squeeze blackheads. This often causes more harm than good, including skin irritation, scarring, and possibly infection.

Tool kits

For a blackhead remover tool kit, look for one that has a number of different instruments to help you remove blackheads in hard-to-reach areas and keep your pores clean.

Blackhead remover tool kits often include these tools

  • Tweezers: Used to pinch and extract blackheads from your pores.

  • Lancet: Used to puncture mature blackheads to release the sebum trapped in your pores.

  • Scraper: Used to gently scrape mature blackheads from the surface of your skin.

  • Extractor: Fits over blackheads and gently punctures them to release the material inside.

Versatility

Consider what you need a blackhead remover to do, and select a product that meets all your needs. For example, a mask is a good choice if you’re looking for a product that will benefit your skin in other ways. Many face masks also exfoliate, hydrate, or have anti-aging properties.

Most blackhead remover tool kits come with a variety of instruments for tackling all types of blackheads, including those in hard-to-reach places.

Durability

This is a concern if you’re looking at manual tools or electric blackhead removers. Make sure the blackhead remover you choose is made of durable materials. For manual tools, stainless steel is best. With electric blackhead removers, consider the warranty. Many offer at least a one-year warranty.

Learning curve

Masks and pore strips are usually straightforward, but manual tools and electric blackhead removers can be tricky to operate. If you’ve never used them before, you could end up irritating your skin more than helping it. Make sure you read all the instructions that come with the product. And do some extra research to make sure you understand how to use the tool. If you have acne-prone skin, always consult with your dermatologist before using manual tools or an electric blackhead remover.

Make sure you’re only using a blackhead remover on blackheads. While sebaceous filaments may look similar to blackheads, they are often lighter in color and lie flat on your skin. They’re a normal part of your skin, and trying to extract them will just cause irritation.

Pain

Removing blackheads with sharp extracting tools and ripping off pore strips can be painful, especially if you have sensitive skin. If this is a concern for you, you may want to go with a product that is gentler on the skin, like a mask or an electric blackhead remover.

Time required

Pore strips and electric blackhead removers are good options if you’re looking for a product that’s going to do the job quickly. But if time is not a concern and you want a blackhead remover that’s going to be more thorough, a face mask or manual tools will enable you to cover a larger area with more precision.

Price

The amount you’ll pay depends on the type of blackhead remover. Most masks, pore strips and manual tool kits are under $30, and some may be as affordable as $5. Electric blackhead removers are the most expensive. These start at around $30 and can go up to $75 or more.

EXPERT TIP

Only use small blackhead remover tools on your face. Larger tools are designed for your back and other areas of your body.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips for using blackhead removers

  • Wash your face twice a day to prevent new blackheads. Always remove makeup before bed.

  • Don’t pick at your blackheads. This will just inflame them more.

  • Blackhead removers work best when your pores are open. Heat opens pores. Use your blackhead remover right after you get out of the shower for the best results.

  • After using a blackhead remover, apply your normal skincare.

  • Don’t use a blackhead remover more than once or twice a week to avoid skin irritation.

  • Wash your blackhead remover tools or wipe them down with alcohol after each use.

Don’t just remove blackheads. Be proactive. Prevent new ones from forming by washing your face twice a day and avoiding skincare products that clog your pores.

FAQ

Q. Which type of blackhead remover is best for sensitive skin?

A. That depends. Using a pore strip is similar to ripping off a Band-Aid, so pore strips can irritate sensitive skin. Some face masks work well, but check the ingredient list to be sure there is nothing that will irritate your skin. Your best option may be a manual tool kit or an electric blackhead remover, though make sure you know how to use these properly before you begin.

Q. Should I use a lot of force when using manual tools or an electric blackhead remover?

A. No. The skin on your face is delicate, and putting too much pressure on it could do more harm than good. Gently press down with the tool, using as little force as possible to get the job done.

Q. Is one type of blackhead remover more effective than the others?

A. Everyone’s skin is different, and what works well for you may not work for someone else. Go with the blackhead remover that best fits your skin type.

The team that worked on this review
  • Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Writer
  • Katherine
    Katherine
    Editor
  • Katie
    Katie
    Editorial Director

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