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serene , 22 Aug 2017

Clogged pores under scar tissue

I think that with chronic picking we develop a certain type of acne which is unique to our condition. I have found myself recently having a breakout which felt hard under the skin yet on the surface resembled a clogged pore. When I tried to extract it with a blackhead extractor, nothing would come out yet I noticed some scar tissue (which appears whiter than surrounding skin and has a harder consistency). I tweezed the scar tissue open and was able to extract a dense comedone. I dont understand how my body would have naturally expelled this particular clogged pore since it was underneath a scar and was calcified into a hard substance. I've been using salicylic acid diligently over the past week in order to curb acne, and what I noticed is that the salicylic acid tends to harden some of the forming pimples under the skin, creating a large blackhead or comedone. Therefore, it probably would have taken a long time to be reabsorbed or purged by the body. I am not sure if it would be able to be purged since it was blocked off by scar tissue. So right now I am a bit confused as to how I am to take care of my skin when choosing to fully abstain from skin picking. What exactly do I do if I get these deep blocked pores on the skin and pores which are blocked off by scars? Has anyone been battling with this? I dont want to be walking around for months with dense bumps on my skin. I understand not picking small surface pimples and whiteheads which can eventually pop on their own, but its maddening to have to abstain from picking these deeper cysts related to scarring. Wondering if there is anyone who can relate and understand what I am referring to.

12 Answers
August 22, 2017

I would see if you could get a prescription for trentinoin cream from a dermatologist. I haven't experienced exactly what you explained but I still feel like this would help! It is a retina cream that speeds up skin cell turn over very very fast you must be careful to follow the instructions of use or you will end up with a very peeling raw face. But when use correctly (tiny amount at night 30 minutes after drying your face fro washing) it works wonders to constantly remove the top layer of skin from your face helping with acne, clogged pores, scans, scars, sun spots and even wrinkles. I can only assume that it could possibly work away at even that scar tissue or thickened area of skin to allow clogged pores a better chance of actually sloughing off.

August 22, 2017

Have you experienced any side effects of trentinoin? Was there an acne outbreak when you first began using it? And how effective has it been for you in minimizing acne? Ive also seen Differin (adapalene) being sold in stores...have you looked into or tried that? I wonder what a dermatologist would say about the over the counter option.

August 22, 2017

I get them, as I've created way too many scars because of those stupid plugs (whatever they are).

You can try various products such as retin a, differin, etc. I found they irritate the skin too much around the area.

I have found a combo of glyclolic asid and salicylic acid to help.....but once those areas underneath or within the scars are inflamed, those plugs (which are rubbery blocks rather than pore shaped) have to come out. Sometimes a build-up of dry skin forms on the scars...i pick it off gently or try manual exfoliation.

What moisturiser are you using? What cleanser are you using?

August 23, 2017

I have recently been using Dermacontrol Oil Control Foam Wash. As for moisturizer, I have purchased Mederma PM Intensive Overnight Scar Cream to try out. I am using as a guide for the best skin care items. For example, here is a review of the Mederma product Im trying out...…
The site is founded by Paula Begoun, a cosmetic chemist who has written many books on the subject of product formulations.
As for resurfacing the skin, I am back to doing heavy duty face peels. It resurfaces a thick layer of skin in a few days time...which is I guess a more speedy way to exfoliate, unlike retin a and differin. But I do sometimes use Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-Wrinkle Cream Original Formula as it contains retinol.
With acne scars its best to thicken the layer of the dermis (it raises the shallow scars and makes them less prominent while fully eliminating others) , and that is what I achieve with regular facial peels in combination with retinol moisturizers.

August 24, 2017

I look into Beautypedia for product reviews as well as Makeup Alleyl. I have a few of P's C moisture, exfoliators with mixed experiences.
I have no shallow scars, only raised and white after the red has disappeared, also some continual red, not raised. They have lessened through the years with glycolic and salicylic. For wash Ive been using Clinique acne foam and Bye Bye Blemish. Moisture I use Paula's Skin Balance gel moisturiser.
Interestingly, from the last onslaught....exhaustion and desperation yesterday had me try Tinactin cream. I see improvenemt today....shocker, but I'm not holding my breath. I'll use it exclusively for the next while.
At almost 63, i never imagined to be dealing with this instead of wrinkles. This is far worse an affliction.
Thanks for the info...I'll look into the mederma..

August 24, 2017

Your scarring is on the body, not the face? Has your skin always scarred in the same manner or has it changed in its ability to heal itself over the years? How long have you suffered with skin picking? Is your skin still breaking out with acne at 62 or do you mostly pick at clogged pores such as blackheads? I have tried the Mederma cream and I really like it so far. The consistency isn't oily (yet it still feels moisturizing), it absorbs very well into the skin, and the smell is gentle. It lightly smells like onion extract, which is exactly what they use inside it...but overall its actually really nice. Doesn't seem to block pores either. I ordered it from Amazon, which was $10 cheaper than in the store.

August 25, 2017

Nope...on face, and this has been going on for about 7 years. The issue seems to be me picking a milia or whitehead or taking out a blackhead. Some heal without issue...others morph into complete hell that produce plugs or blocks of varying material and shapes and stubbornness in an outward process.
I do have some sebaceous dysplasia, so it's compounding the issue.
I've tried varying products, but the question is really why some heal and others don't. My brow is pure hell, where hair is a hindrance to healing. Picking isn't mindless, nor does it soothe me. I never use fingers, and I am soooo careful with cleaning and disinfecting.
I have some clogged pore blackhead types around my nose. Salicylic and glycolic does help, and I take off the dry flakes and dried sebum. If I go too deep or it becomes a whitehead, different scenario.
I also have pores or maybe follocles that start to inflame around my forehead hairline....i usually use whatever preparation for a bit...maybe weeks...and if it starts to become bigger, or become a whitehead, then I usually have to remove the hair or hairs, dig out all the plugs and eventually it heals. It's obviously an inflammatory reaction gone awry, but if I leave it persists. So, either deal with it or suffer with it festering and sore....i deal and pick and annihilate it. Once clean, it heals normally until its a dry flake of skin or scab....voila, gone.
There's also a cycle caused by products as well as after hydrocolloid covers (i use duoDerm) where debriding and cleaning up is a must rather than leaving a huge scab. Because.....after the scab is the same old. It doesn't heal like a normal sore or scab or zit.
I've looked at Mederma, but says not to use on open sores. I, in truth, don't care about the scars anymore. I just want to know the why of those plugs or whatever they are happen and hinder the healing.
Being labeled as a picker and that being the cause set me up for no answers. One would think that a dermo would accept a challenge, at least do a biopsy, and want to dig deeper (picker pun) and investigate. A patient's hell is varied...while picking seems my only eventual option, it's the why neglect that ticks me more. Products such as using vaseline only set me up for longer hell, because she believed it would remind me to stop picking. She has offered many products, which I've used vith varying success over the years. The picking isn't why I'm there....its the what the hell are these things and why do they happen. Blank's because you pick. Sigh.

August 26, 2017

I experience those plugs at the base of cystic acne. The last one I pulled at with a tweezer came out with some pain but it was a perfect and clean extraction. It was in a teardrop shape and left a perfect circular indent in the center of the acne nodule. It now healed extremely fast and all the inflammation is gone. And if I didn't pick it...who knows how long that huge cyst would have stayed in place. I usually know now when a picked pimple isnt healing well because even though it will scab over, there will still be some persistent inflammation and the scab wont be lying flat after a few days. Then im prompted to pick off the scab and pull out the plug underneath. Then usually fast healing takes place. Its frustrating.

May 09, 2019

@snipzie did you ever find out what this was? Im in exact same situation. Desperate to know if you found root cause/how to fix it.

June 09, 2021

wow. never in my life did i think id find anyone with the same issue. ive been referred to therapy, on anxiety meds, antibiotics.....but until i can figure out why my forehead skin does not heal like everywhere else on my body, i will always be labeled a picker. I got to the point that i was thinking it wasmy fault. i just pulled out a plug and now, 2 hours later inflammation in gone and its closing up. how am i in the wrong??!!

June 19, 2021

I am having this problem too. My eyebrows are so messed up due to the scar tissue. BOTH eyebrows are missing a chunk out of them. The skin doesn’t look badly scarred but the hairs always cause a massive white head. It’s tough to pop it and 9 times out of 10 the hair won’t even come out of the now gaping hole the puss left behind. And it drives me insane seeing a black little hair in the hole and not being able to remove it. The hair is not growing back in, and I have pretty much given up. I just use an eyebrow pencil now. I’ve noticed 1-2 old scars will get very itchy even tho it’s been healed for months. I finally get aggravated enough over the itching that I will use my trusty tweezers to bust it open usually finding a couple hard white (not puss) filled pores. I get rid of it and it will then heal right. I’m new to this forum (signed up an hr ago) and I’m looking for help and some friends that understand the hell I go through. If you want plz read my story I posted.

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