The Ordinary for Closed Comedones

The best The Ordinary products for closed comedones.

This page is just a guide and not of a professional opinion. Please always speak to a professional for a diagnosis. Should you use any products, patch testing is highly recommended and never use these products on compromised skin. Always read the instructions on the official page before using.

A simple guide to closed comedones.

The Ordinary products for Closed Comedones

The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2%

The Ordinary AHA

How to use The Ordinary AHA 30% + BHA 2%

  • It’s very important to patch test this product and read the official page.
  • Apply a thin layer to cleansed, dry skin avoiding the eye area
  • Leave for just a minute and build up to the maximum of 10 minutes
  • When rinsing off, take care to avoid the eyes.
  • After using the AHA 30% avoid any conflicting products. Use something calming and hydrating.
  • Please also check The Ordinary conflicts.

Azelaic Acid

The Ordinary for closed comedones

How to use The Ordinary Azelaic Acid

  • Patch test this product before using.
  • Apply AM and/or PM
  • If using in the morning, please be sure to use an SPF.
  • You can use this product alone or after water-based products
  • Check conflicting products.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10% repairs the uneven tone of the skin and takes care of blemishes. If you have closed comedones, Azelaic acid has anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties that clean the bacteria from the pores that cause acne and close comedones. Azelaic Acid increases cell turnover and helps your skin heal more quickly and minimizes scarring.

The Ordinary Glycolic Acid

The Ordinary for closed comedones

How to use The Ordinary Glycolic Acid

  • Patch test this product
  • Apply to cleansed skin with a cotton pad and wipe over your face avoiding the eye area.
  • Use preferably in the evening.
  • Please always check The Ordinary conflicts

The Ordinary Glycolic Acid (alpha-hydroxy-acid AHA) dissolves the bond between dead skin cells. After applying Glycolic acid, the dead skin cells get wiped off easily. It helps the skin heal faster from closed comedones and penetrates the skin more deeply in comparison to most other AHAs, making it work for closed comedones that mostly affect a larger area of the skin than blackheads & pus-pimples.

The Ordinary Retinoid

the ordinary for closed comedones

How to use The Ordinary Retinoid

  • Patch test this product
  • Apply in the evening.
  • This product will be applied either directly after cleansing or after water-based products and before heavy creams if using.
  • Always check The Ordinary conflicts.

Tretinoin & Isotretinoin are the two most effective retinoids prescribed for the treatment of closed comedones. Usually, the treatment begins with topical retinoids. Retinoids are Vitamin A derivatives that improve skin cell turnover.

The Ordinary Salicylic Acid 2% Masque

How to use The Ordinary Salicylic Acid Masque

  • Always patch test this product
  • Use in the evening is best
  • Apply to the specific areas needed or all to your entire face.
  • Avoid the eye area
  • Leave for no more than 10 minutes.
  • Take care to avoid the eye area when rinsing off.
  • Always check The Ordinary conflicts.

Salicylic Acid (BHA) goes deeper into the skin therefore can really decrease oil production in pores and gets clear all the dead skin cells which clog up the skin causing closed comedones.

Closed Comedones

What are closed comedones and what do they feel and look like?

Closed comedones are also known as whiteheads are a form of acne. It´s where pores or hair follicles become blocked. The color is white to the same colour of your skin. Even though they’re called whiteheads, they don’t actually have a head that you can pop. You might be tempted, but please do not try to squeeze these. The photo below shows the forehead and hairline.

So if you have a rough, bumpy texture under your skin with no redness, but white to skin coloured bumps under the skin, then you probably have closed comedones. Many teens will have closed comedones due to hormonal changes.

Photo of closed comedones on forehead.
Closed Comedones

Can I pop closed comedones?

No! In closed comedones, the follicles get blocked and the pore opening is closed, therefore, squeezing it like a pus-pimple is not possible. What´s trapped inside is beneath the surface of the skin so it’s not possible to extract what´s inside without cutting the skin. So please do not squeeze these or you will be left with scarring and possibly cause infection.

What causes closed comedones?

  • Hormones
  • Skincare products
  • Not cleansing correctly and removing all suncream/skincare products
  • Haircare products
  • Diet

The most prominent cause of closed comedones is using skin care products, moisturizers, lotions, etc. that seal the pores on the topmost layer of the skin, not allowing the skin to breathe. If you find closed comedones around your hairline or forehead, then they’re more than likely a result of a faulty occlusive hair care product like an oil or a gel.

Apart from products, comedones occur due to hormonal changes.

If you have oily skin, you’re at a high risk of having closed comedones. Excess oil blocks your skin pores and your skin amasses a lot of dead skin cells.

Where can closed comedones appear?

Closed comedones can occur anywhere on the skin. The most common areas are face, chest, back, and shoulders.

Who can get closed comedones?

Anyone can get closed comedones. If you find you have a lot of them all the time, then you may have a type of acne called Comedonal Acne. Closed comedones are common in teenagers due to the continuous hormonal changes in the body.

How do closed comedones differ from open comedones?

Closed comedones/whiteheads are blocked pores/hair follicles so they are under the skin so their colour is white to skin colour. Open comedones, also known as blackheads develop when an internal part of the skin gets exposed to air and oxidizes, turning it black.

What are the best products to use for closed comedones? How do you unclog closed comedones?

  • Salicylic Acid (look for a facial wash)
  • Azelaic Acid
  • Retinoids
  • AHA 30% + BHA 2%
  • Glycolic Acid
  • In some countries you may need a prescription for these ingredients. Deciem does not ship some of these to Australia or Canada due to the regulations.
  • It is always best to speak to a professional if possible or chat with your local pharmacist.

How do I avoid closed comedones?

  • Cleanse your skin really well morning and evening
  • Never leave any makeup on your skin
  • Keep your skincare routine simple
  • Look for a cleanser with salicylic acid
  • Exfoliate but be gentle with your skin. Too much exfoliation is not good and can also cause closed comedones.
  • Try not to touch your face too much
  • Diet plays a part in closed comedones

Can you extract closed comedones?

You cannot squeeze or pick closed comedones. You can talk to a professional about treatments but it will not stop them from coming back. Prevention is better than cure. Try some of the products above, look at your lifestyle, diet and all the different products you are using including hair products you use that could also be causing your closed comedones.