DIY blackhead removal masks

These natural remedies will banish those pesky blackheads without stripping and damaging your skin.

Egg white and lemon juice pore strips
This is a popular tried-and-tested blackhead removal mask that gets the job done. The egg white, with its sticky texture, settles in easily and removes those stubborn blackheads as well as dead skin cells. A natural astringent, it tightens pores and skin helping keep blackheads at bay. Lemon juice is a natural bleaching agent, so it brightens and tones your skin, helping you achieve a spotless look.
Beat together 1 egg white with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice. Whisk it well. Now place tissue paper strips over the affected area and use a facial brush to apply the egg mix on the paper. Apply enough to paste the paper firmly onto the skin. Let this layer dry and then apply another layer of paper and egg mix. Keep this on for around 15 minutes. Peel the tissue paper mask when your skin starts to tighten. The blackheads, dead skin cells, and dirt will come off. Rinse the area with cold water and moisturise well.
Photograph: Jigsawstocker /

Baking soda and honey mask
This common kitchen item is a strong exfoliator helping remove oil, dirt, and dead skin cells, all of which result in blackheads. Honey, on the other hand, with its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties will clear out clogged pores and remove excess oil from your skin. If you have combination skin, we suggest you use this mask just on your T zone. But don’t use this mask if you have sensitive skin; baking soda can be a harsh ingredient.
Mix 2 tablespoons of baking soda with 2 tablespoons of honey to form a paste. Apply this mask onto the affected area. Keep it on for 15 minutes and then rinse off. Follow up with a moisturiser.
Photograph: Aqua Mechanical/Flickr

Turmeric and coconut oil mask
With its antibacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-inflammatory properties, turmeric is a great tool in your fight against blackheads. It also helps get rid of bacteria, reducing the chances of acne. And coconut with its antimicrobial protects skin, reduces inflammation, and keeps it moisturised.
Mix 1 tablespoon of turmeric with ½ a tablespoon coconut oil so as to form a paste. Apply on the affected area and let is sit for 10 – 15 minutes. Rinse off and don’t forget to moisturise.
Photograph: jigsawstocker/

Lemon, mint, and gelatin mask
Lemon juice is a powerful ingredient packed with vitamin C, a chemical exfoliate, which helps slough off dirt and dead skin, evens out skin tone, and adds brightness. The antibacterial property of the mint will help sooth your skin and shrink pores. The gelatin will help hold the mask together, but it’s also a natural protein rich in collagen, helping improve the skin’s elasticity, making it firmer and more youthful.
Boil a handful of mint leaves in a little water and then put them in a blender to make a thick paste. Let it cool. Add 1 tablespoon of gelatine powder to ½ cup of warm water. Keep stirring so that there are no lumps. Add the mint paste and 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Mix together and apply the mask on your face. Keep it on for 15 minutes, till it has completely dried. Peel it off and rinse with cold water. Pat on an oil-free moisturiser when you’re done.

Milk and honey pore strips
This is another easy pore strip that will save you a trip to the stores. Milk contains lactic acid, a mild natural exfoliator, which helps remove oil, dead skin cells and dirt, thus unclogging pores. Honey is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, great for cleaning out your skin, with the added benefit of moisturising as well.
To make this pore strip, mix 1 tablespoon of raw honey with 1½ tablespoon of whole milk. Microwave for a few seconds to help it mix well. Let the mixture cool. Then dip clean, thin cotton strips in the mixture and place them where you have blackheads. Leave the strips on for 15 minutes. Gently peel them off and rinse your face. Follow up with a moisturiser.

Lead photograph: jcomp /