Pop Your Pimple

How to Pop a Pimple Without Leaving a Scar

Popping a pimple the right and safe way: Pimples always tend to show up at the wrong place and predominantly many individuals adopt extreme measures to eliminate it. People often tend to squeeze, pierce, and poke in the hope of getting rid of this unexpected blemish.

A general advice by the worldwide dermatologists is to avoid popping a pimple at home as this can lead to permanent scarring and infections. On the other hand, pimples hurt a lot and appear at times when we need to look our best. This alleviates the confidence levels.

What are the Commonly Experienced Pimple Types?

Predominantly there are four types of inflammatory acne or pimples commonly seen to infect people which includes

  1. Papules

The first type of inflammatory acne seen to affect the skin. Papules are small, solid, no pus containing pimples, they usually don’t possess a visible pore and are usually seen as red swollen inflamed tissue, that may be tender to touch.

  1. Pustules

These are pus-filled pimples that are noticeably white or yellow in the center. The presence of white blood cells distinguishes pustules from papules. The pus formation is seen when the immune system produces white blood cells as the immune system tries to destroy the microbes that enter the ruptured follicle.  The skin surrounding the pustules appear swollen and tender.

  1. Nodules

Usually seen to affect the skin in the severe cases of acne breakout. The nodules are large, tender bumps beneath the skin’s surface which are hard and stiff when touched and are seen to form a buildup of bacteria, skin cells, and sebum in the follicles rooted deeper in the skin. This deep buildup is seen to cause tissue damage and prompts the immune system to initiate an inflammatory response.

Nodules appear very similar to papules but are seen to be larger and painful. They usually do not contain any pus but are seen to be buried deep into the skin for a long time.

  1. Cystic pimples

Cystic inflammatory acne is one of the toughest acne types to treat. Cysts are large, swollen, red pus-filled lump that is seen to be buried deep in the skin and usually does not come to a head. They do not appear like a pimple but are the most painful of the inflammatory acne types. They are commonly manifested individually or in lumps.

What are the Pimples Types That Should not be Touched?

The inflammatory acne types that should not be touched include deep nodules and cysts. As making efforts to pop them will increase their healing time. It’s best to allow these acne types to self-heal. Alternatively, a dermatologist will prescribe injections that will aid in alleviating the swelling at a faster pace.

The removal of white and blackheads are also known as open and closed comedones should be ideally left to the professionals as they use comedones extractors that effectively aid in the cleaning up of pores.

Milia the white tiny bumps that are predominantly seen on babies are best popped by dermatologists or aestheticians.

What are The Acne or Pimple Types That Can be Popped at The Comforts of The Home?

The perfect inflammatory pimple that is safe to pop at home are the pustules by gently pressing the pimple to expel the pus out. If the pus is not extracted by applying gentle pressure on it immediately halt the procedure as a pimple is not attained the popping stage as this is seen to increase the pain and infection attacks.

How to Know When a Pimple is Ready to be Popped?

Consider popping a pimple when the pus is close to the skin surface and can be drained out without much effort. On the other hand, avoid popping a blind or a cystic pimple

What is the time to pop a pimple at home?

Dermatologists recommend the following times to for effective pimple popping

  • Pimple popping can usually be performed in the evening along with a nighttime skin cleaning routine as this is seen to allow the inflammation from the manipulated pimple to subside overnight.
  • Alternatively, it’s also a safe idea to pop a pimple post a shower as the skin is loose, clean, and soft.

What are the tools required to effectively pop a pimple?

The following tools aid in an effective pimple popping procedure

  1. Hand soap

Any soap that effectively aids sanitizing the hands can be used.

  1.  Face Wash

A suitable face wash that is beneficial in the removal of the makeup.

  1. Exfoliator (optional)

An exfoliator is seen to effectively remove the dead cells build up on the skin which helps to ease a pimple popping procedure by clearing the pore path. Any kind of acid exfoliating pads will serve the cause.

  1. Clean towels

A clean towel needs to be used as the microscopic pore clogger build up so quickly and easily, even if everything looks “clean.”

  1. Clean washcloth (optional)

A washcloth is necessary if you want to gently steam the face with hot water, to soften up a pimple. Alternatively, pimple extraction can also be performed post a hot shower.

  1. Needle

A thin sewing needle with a sharp point is preferred for pimple popping.

  1. Comedone extractor (optional)

This tool type comes with a loop on one end for delivering pressure to the sides of a pimple and a lancet for piercing the pimple on the other end.  Some people prefer this tool than using their fingers. However, aggressive usage is seen to damage the skin.

Note: The tip of the lancets dull faster and require a frequent change.

  1. A lighter

Matches or lighter help in sterilizing the needle or lancet prior to piercing the skin.

  1. Rubbing alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is another element of disinfection which is used to wipe the tools, hands and the pimple itself prior to popping.  Any brand of 70% isopropyl alcohol available in the pharmacy will serve the need.

  1. Cotton balls or pads

Cotton balls aid in the application of the rubbing alcohol. Any cotton ball brand available in the medical store will serve the cause.

  1. Fresh clean tissues or latex gloves

Covering the hands with latex gloves or clean fresh tissue before starting the procedure not only aids in infection spread but also prevents the sharp nail edges to come in contact with the pimples.

Note: Usage of powder-free latex gloves is highly recommended.

  1. Drying lotion

This will not only help to disinfect but also dry out a pimple after pus removal. Lotions containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid are great to use. Alternatively, antibiotic ointments such as Polysporin/Neosporin are also an option.

Note: Antibiotic ointments can cause allergy in some people, prior usage before the treatment will aid in checking this.

How to pop a pimple the correct way?

The following steps need to be carefully followed for an effective and safe pimple popping

  1. Preparation of the skin

Remove the makeup and wash cleanse the infected area by washing the face.  Later use a slightly damp cloth to gently press the infected area for a minute or two to soften the skin.

  1. Wash hands

Wash the hands thoroughly with soap and warm water especially underneath the nails as this will aid in preventing the infection spread. It is recommended to use a finger brush to clean the nails.

  1. Sterilize the tools

Disinfect the needle and/or comedone extractor by passing it through a flame and allow to cool down. Later wipe down with rubbing alcohol.

  1. Sterilize the infected pimple.

Dab rubbing alcohol on the pimple and the surrounding area. Wipe down your fingers and/or put on the latex gloves or fresh clean tissue.

  1. Pierce the infected acne or a pimple

Hold the needle parallel to the skin and then gently pierce the white part of a pimple in that same parallel direction. Therefore piercing is performed across, not down as this encourages the bacteria to be pushed back into the pore.

  1. Create a small tear

While the needle is still in the infected pimple, pull it upward to rip the skin to create a minute clean tear from which the pus is seen to drain out safely. As most of the acnes are dead skin cells not much damage is seen to be caused.

  1. Pus release

Gently pushing downwards on the sides of a pimple will effectively expel the pus. The use of the finger pads is preferred over the nails for this action. Alternatively, the comedone extractor can also be used to gently apply pressure which needs to be done extra cautiously.  Perform the pus release procedure till the infected pimple starts bleeding or weeping and halt the process post this.

  1. Application of the drying lotion

Dab the popped pimple with rubbing alcohol and then apply any drying lotion of your choice. Do not apply any cosmetics for an hour post the pimple popping treatment.

What are the precautions to be followed post a pimple popping treatment?

Aftercare treatment plays a pivotal role in a pimple popping therapy. Do not use any products that cause skin irritation as this may leave the treated area inflamed and can also leave out a permanent scar. Apply an over the counter hydrocortisone cream that will aid to control the inflammation. Later dab the treated pimple with Vaseline as this will help the now open wound from scabbing over.

What is the extra precaution that darker tone individuals need to follow?

Hyperpigmentation is seen to occur in darker tone individuals during any form of skin trauma or inflammation. Therefore it highly recommended being as gentle as possible during the popping session so as to avoid any skin scarring or swelling. Dermatologists suggest proactive removal of contents from active pimples helps to reduce inflammation quickly which in turn minimizes the risk of skin scarring and hyperpigmentation.

What Are The Pros and Cons of Popping a Pimple at Home?

If a pimple is ready and is popped in the right way, the clear benefits include

  1. Faster healing process

Extracting the wound of pus will definitely aid in a faster healing.

  1. Bump reduction

A characteristic feature of a pimple is raised-up noticeable bumps. Popping up a pimple at the right time relieves the swelling quickly.

  1. Easier to cover

Post popping it is easier to cover the zit with a concealer and powder.

  1. No scarring

If done in the right way no damage is seen to occur.

The reasons for not self-extracting a pimple include:

  1.  Slower healing

If the popping process does not involve cleanliness new bacterial strains can be introduced. On the other hand, popping the pimple with a needle can also push the bacteria deeper into the pore which can also enhance the infection.

  1. Infection spread

During the rupturing process of a pimple that holds oil, debris, and microbes, there are all possible chances of these materials to clog other nearby pores. This clogging increases the chances of more acne development.

  1. Scarring, weeping, and long-term discolorations

Popping the skin, leaves the skin vulnerable to more microbial attack and also enhances the chances of scarring and hyperpigmentation. Plus it’s impossible to cover a wet oozing acne.

When to Consult a Dermatologist?

It is always recommended to consult a dermatologist if the pimples are seen to increase in number and over the counter medications do not yield beneficial results. A dermatologist can safely extract and pop the pimples and can also inject the painful cysts in individuals with severe acne disorders.

Following the above tips and techniques effectively help in safely extracting a pimple at home. It is always better to allow the pimples to heal by itself as this minimizes the risk of infection and scarring. Maintaining a good hygiene and a good diet will decrease the pimple occurrences.


  • https://www.elle.com/beauty/makeup-skin-care/a12820739/how-to-pop-pimple/
  • https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/beauty/a19421195/how-to-pop-pimple/
  • http://www.thisisinsider.com/what-is-the-right-way-to-pop-a-pimple-dermatologist-2017-10
  • https://www.wikihow.com/Pop-a-Pimple
  • https://beautyeditor.ca/2015/10/06/how-to-pop-a-pimple

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