How to Get Rid of Blackheads in Ear: The Most Effective Natural Treatments

How to Get Rid of Blackheads in Ear: The Most Effective Natural Treatments

Acne and blackheads can affect your ear just as much as they can affect other parts of your face, back, and chest. Very often, blackheads in the ear make your ears look dirty and unclean. However, the reason for pores in your ears getting clogged and turning black is not to do with hygiene. In fact, over-zealously cleaning your ears could stimulate sebum production which can cause more blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples to appear in your ear.

It can be challenging to get rid of blackheads from your ear because it is relatively small and sensitive tissue. Therefore, care should be taken when trying to unblock your pores and remove blackheads in your outer ear.

There are many home remedies that are great for getting rid of these unsightly black spots from your ear. Natural remedies that include ingredients like tea tree oil, witch hazel, or apple cider vinegar can help to remove blackheads, dry out clogged pores and reduce the chance of infection and whiteheads. You can also use baking soda and a combination of essential oils to help get rid of a blackhead in your ear.

In this article, you will learn how to make your own great and effective treatments to remove blackheads from your ear and ear canal. You will also learn the safest ways to banish blackheads and pimples behind your ear if they are bothering you or affecting your appearance.

What Causes Blackheads in Your Ear?

Blackheads and whiteheads can form in your ear if oil from the skin (sebum) plugs the pores. The journal Clinics in Dermatology states that your ear canal and outer ear contains sebaceous glands that excrete sebum.1 As with any pores on your body, sebum can plug these pores causing either blackheads or whiteheads.

Of course, you can also get pimples, boils, or pustules in your ear that cause a lot of pain and discomfort.

What is the difference between blackheads and whiteheads?

Blackheads form when sebum blocks your skin’s pores. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic explain that the black dots in the pores appear when the sebum oil oxidizes with the air and turns a black color.2 Blackheads are also called open comedones and they can affect your face, back, shoulder, chest and ears.

Whiteheads are called closed comedones and they stay white because air doesn’t get into the plugged follicle and therefore the sebum doesn’t oxidize and turn black.

How to Get Rid of Blackheads from your Ear Naturally?

Although blackheads aren’t a serious skin condition, they are not very nice to look at and the clogged pores in your ear can become infected and develop into a pimple.

Here are some great, simple home treatments to help get rid of blackheads from your ear for good.

Tea tree oil for blackheads

A quick and effective way to get rid of blackheads from your outer ear is to apply tea tree oil. Well-known for its antibacterial properties, tea tree oil helps to remove the source of acne and help dry out blocked pores and as such it can help to remove blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples.

Research published in The Medical Journal of Australia found that tea tree oil was effective in removing blackheads and whiteheads as well as getting rid of inflamed pustules. The study also found that 5% tea tree oil was just a good for acne as a popular pharmaceutical drug benzoyl peroxide. The benefits of tea tree oil as an acne treatment were that it produces fewer side effects.3

How to use tea tree oil for blackheads in ear:

Use tea tree oil to quickly get rid of blackheads from your ear by following these steps:

  1. Put a drop or two of tea tree oil on the end of a cotton swab.
  2. Apply the tea tree oil directly to the blackheads in your outer ear and behind your ear. Make sure not to insert the swab too far into your ear canal.
  3. Use the tea tree oil home remedy 2-3 times a day until the blackheads in your ear and behind your ear are gone completely.

Please remember to do a small test patch to test how your skin reacts to tea tree oil. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil to other remedies for acne to help boost their antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effect.

Baking soda

Baking soda is an effective natural method to remove blackheads because its grainy texture helps to exfoliate your skin and unplug pores in your outer ear. Baking soda is also a natural antiseptic ingredient that can prevent blackheads becoming infected.

Studies into the use of baking soda to prevent inflammatory skin infections found that it is effective in killing off bacteria.4 Baking soda also helps to balance pH levels on your skin which reduces itching and helps clear up acne outbreaks.

How to use:

All you need to make this easy blackhead remedy is some baking soda, water, and a drop or two of tea tree oil.

  1. Make a smooth paste by mixing some baking soda and a little water.
  2. Add 1-2 drops tea tree oil.
  3. Gently massage the baking soda into the affected skin area in ear with the blackheads to remove excess sebum.
  4. Leave for 10-15 minutes and then rinse off with warm water.

Witch hazel for blackheads in ear

Witch hazel contains tannins, a natural astringent that can dry out sebum from plugged pores that have turned black. Witch hazel naturally heals skin ailments associated with acne because it stops excess oil production and can hinder the development of blackheads.

For example, the publication Herbal Treatment for Dermatologic Disorders reported on how effective witch hazel is for acne. The researchers stated that witch hazel extracts are used to topically treat acne and reduce acne flare-ups.5

How to use:

Regularly applying witch hazel to the blackheads in or behind your ear will help them disappear quickly. These are the steps for blackhead removal:

  1. Put in 3-6 drops of tea tree oil in 1 oz. witch hazel extract.
  2. Using a cotton ball, apply the witch hazel to the blackheads in your ear and allow to dry.
  3. Use the remedy 2-3 times a day until the black spots are gone from your ear completely.

Another way to use witch hazel for removing the blackheads in your ear is to mix some with aloe vera. This can be especially useful if you have itchy ears or you also have outbreaks of pimples in your ear.

The Journal of Clinical and Aesthetic Dermatology reported that a combination of witch hazel and aloe vera makes an effective acne treatment. Both ingredients are botanical anti-inflammatories that can help to soothe acne-infected skin.6

Apple cider vinegar for blackheads

Raw unprocessed apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a great way to remove dead skin cells and sebum that are causing blackheads in your ear. ACV is also a natural antiseptic liquid that helps to prevent bacteria from infecting pores and causing an outbreak of pimples.

Apple cider vinegar contains high levels of acetic acid. According to one medical journal, excess sebum and the Propionibacterium acnes strain of bacteria elevate the skin’s pH level.7 So, applying diluted apple cider vinegar to blackheads can help to reduce the number of them by balancing the pH level on your skin.

How to use:

To dry out excess sebum that is causing blackheads in your ears, you can apply apple cider vinegar as follows:

  1. Dilute raw apple cider vinegar with equal quantities of water.
  2. Dip the end of a cotton swab in the apple cider vinegar remedy and apply to the blackheads in your ear.
  3. Let the ACV dry and then rinse your ear with warm water.
  4. Repeat 2-3 times daily to help get rid of blackheads from your ear and prevent new ones forming.

When using apple cider vinegar for blackhead removal, always remember to use the raw, unprocessed type. This contains all the beneficial enzymes that can boost the health of your skin.

Related article: 5 Research-Based Reasons to Use Apple Cider Vinegar for Acne.

Steam method

Letting steam open the pores in your ears can help make removing blackheads easier. You can make the steam antibacterial if you add a few drops of tea tree oil or lavender essential oil to the hot water. Lavender oil has a dual effect – its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties are great for getting rid of blackheads. Also, lavender essential oil has a calming effect on the body and can help you relieve stress.

How to use:

This is how to remove blackhead from your ears using the steam method:

  1. Pour boiling water into a bowl and add a few drops of tea tree oil or lavender oil and mix well.
  2. Tilt your head to one side and cover your head with a towel to trap in the steam.
  3. Keep your head in place for 5-10 minutes.
  4. If you have blackheads in both ears, you should repeat the process on your other ear.
  5. Wash your hands and gently try to coax out the blackheads with your fingers.

How to Prevent Blackheads in Ear

Once you have got rid of blackheads from your ear, it’s important to prevent them returning. Here are some of the best blackhead prevention methods:

  • Regularly drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration and dry skin as this can cause more sebum to be produced.
  • Always wash your hands before touching your ears.
  • Keep your ears clean and follow safe methods for cleaning your ears.
  • Regularly clean earplugs and headphones to prevent a buildup of bacteria in your ears.
  • Have a healthy diet with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables to boost the health of your skin.
  • Regularly change bed linen to prevent bacterial infections in your ear.

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Article Sources

  1. Clin Dermatol. 2014 Jan-Feb;32(1):141-52.
  2. MayoClinic. Acne symptoms.
  3. Med J Aust. 1990 Oct 15;153(8):455-8.
  4. Compend Contin Educ Dent Suppl. 1997;18(21):S17-21;quiz S46.
  5. NCBI. Herbal treatments for dermatological disorders.
  6. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2014 May; 7(5): 36–44.
  7. Ann Dermatol. 2016 Apr; 28(2): 216–221.

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