There’s plenty going on in and on your skin that you’re not privy to at any given time. Admittedly, a large part of this has to do with the fact that your skin is its own microbiome. The helpful bacteria living all across your skin go about their daily lives helping to defend and clean your skin while repelling invaders. You never really see or know this. There are other things too. Most of of the time what we actually see are things like blackheads where the symptoms of missed care begin to manifest in obvious ways. They tend to get our attention quickly and get an immediate response. This doesn’t always stop when it should. You can manage to get rid of blackheads and yet end up still obsessively trying to perform extraction on pores that you think are just a bit too large. The common response in this case is to get a small off-white “thread” from the pore and feel validated. Unfortunately, that’s not a baby blackhead. That’s a sebaceous filament and it has a place in your skin’s health. Let’s take a closer look.

Sebaceous Filaments
Your skin has always formed and will always form sebaceous filaments. They’re actually part of how you know your skin is healthy. These formations are composed of many of the same things as blackheads, skin oils and dead skin cells, but are actually an important part of how your skin keeps itself healthy. How healthy our relationship is with our skin’s natural oils tends to vary by person. Even when they’re frustrating, your skin’s oils are actually there to help moisturize your face and trap any extra moisture close to your skin to help it remain healthy. This oil comes out of your pores are a fairly reliable rate to spread across your skin. Sebaceous filaments are actually what helps to those oils to the surface. The filaments form around the hair follicle in a pore and offer an easy route to the immediate surface of the skin for your natural oils that doesn’t end up matting the small hairs of your body to your skin with oil. Without sebaceous filaments, your skin would probably be just that much more unhealthy for no real reason. You want to leave filaments alone as they are almost always entirely invisible unlike blackheads.

Blackheads
These are, more often than not, our sworn enemies when we’ve dedicated ourselves to skincare. Not only are blackheads particularly visible, but they are often the heralds of further skin issues to come. Most of the time we’ll see them in advance of or alongside acne and similar conditions. They don’t look good, they don’t feel good, and they can be troublesome to treat if you don’t pause your normal routine and look into ways to properly settle the matter. Blackheads are place where your pores have gotten blocked by an amalgamation of your skin’s natural oils, dead skin cells, and various bits of outside debris. They get compacted into a pore and the top ends up oxidizing to create the particular look that is at odds with the rest of your skin. Unlike sebaceous filaments, blackheads are an unhealthy problem that needs fixing. They hurt your skin’s health instead of being a normal part of your skin’s various systems. That’s why you should always leap to treating them when you seem them.

Woman having facial

Quick Fixes
One of the best things you can do for yourself when you start seeing blackheads is to go get a facial. Try to make sure that the particular treatment you’ll be getting includes extraction. This process is perfect for helping to unclog pores and remove blackheads. Most professionals will use the majority of the facial to clean your skin while loosening anything stuck in your pores with various substances and steam. That makes it comparatively easy and safe to remove the blackheads and other things that could plug up your pores by the time they get to it. Not all of us have the time in our schedules to set aside for a facial though. You can do a lot towards helping banish blackheads by emphasizing oil control for a little while. This will help reduce the ease with which your body accidentally renews some elements of the blackhead and allow your cleansing and exfoliating products to work towards slow removal of the offending plug. It will take a few weeks in this latter case, but your skin will only be healthier for the attention.

Blackheads and sebaceous filaments aren’t the same thing. Being dedicated to caring for your skin is important, yes, but you need to remember that there is such a thing as being too zealous. Blackheads are obvious and can be spotted early on without any extra work, but are hard to remove without work. Sebaceous filaments are more or less invisible until your force them out of your pores with physical pressure. In short, if your skin looks healthy you should try to trust that you’ve done a good job instead of trying to find something wrong. You might just end up hurting your skin accidentally.

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