Should You Pop Your Pimples?
No! Resist the urge and leave your skin alone. Popping pimples can backfire, and cause scars, hyperpigmentation and infection.
Acne is formed when the openings of hair follicles become clogged and blocked with oil and dead skin cells. If the clogged pore becomes infected with bacteria, it forms a pimple, a small bump with pus at its tip. Blockages and inflammation deep inside hair follicles produce cyst-like lumps beneath the surface of your skin.
Many of the ways you prevent pimples can also help you manage them. For instance, washing your face with mild soap in the morning and at night, limiting sun exposure, drinking lots of water, avoiding touching your face, eating right, reducing stress, and not popping pimples may help contain them and reduce how long they stay around.
If you have bad acne despite taking steps to prevent it, you may need a prescription-strength treatment such as:
- topical retinoids (derived from vitamin A) to help prevent clogged pores
- oral contraceptives or antiandrogen agents to reduce hormones that increase sebum production
- oral isotretinoin (Accutane), a retinoid that helps prevent clogged pores, and reduces sebum production, inflammation, and skin bacteria
Prescription-strength treatments may cause serious side effects. Your dermatologist can help you weigh the pros and cons and determine which treatment is right for you.