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Blackheads are a dirty little not-so-secret. When dirt, pollutants, oils and dead skin cells get trapped in open pores, they harden and turn into obnoxious dark blemishes. The buildup can be removed by dermatological tools, but if the pores stay wide open, your blackheads will be back in no time. Get over your blackhead blues with a homemade facial peel. A gentle acid peel breaks though the buildup, while antioxidants and vitamins tighten pores and prevent new blackheads.
Cucumbers are spa favorites for their skin-calming properties, and the antioxidants in green tea can reduce irritation from clogged pores. Puree one small, peeled cucumber in a blender. Combine the cucumber puree with 1/4 cup green tea, 1/4 cup water and one packet unflavored gelatin in a small saucepan. Heat on the stove on medium until the gelatin completely dissolves. Pour the mixture into a glass bowl and refrigerate for 25 minutes. Spread the gel on dry skin and let it dry for 20 minutes. Peel off the mask gently, starting at the edges.
Grapes are full of antioxidants that can tone skin and tighten pores, creating an inhospitable environment for those annoying blackheads. Combine 1/2 cup pure Concord grape juice, 1/2 cup water and one packet unflavored gelatin in a small saucepan. Heat on medium and stir until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Transfer the mixture to a glass bowl and refrigerate for 25 minutes. Spread the mask onto clean skin and let it dry for 20 minutes, then peel the mask off slowly, working in from the edges.
Citric acids, found in all citrus fruits, can cut through skin oils and break up pore-clogging dirt. Combine 2 tbsp. orange juice, 2 tbsp. lime juice, 2 tbsp. lemon juice, 1/2 cup water and one package unflavored gelatin in a small saucepan. Heat on medium, stirring until the gelatin is totally dissolved. Pour the mixture into a glass bowl and refrigerate for 25 minutes. Smooth the mixture onto clean skin and relax for 20 minutes, then gently peel the mask off, starting at the edges.
Gentle Honey Peel
Honey is a natural skin-invigorating ingredient that can brighten skin tone and improve texture, making it ideal for sensitive skin. This "peel" doesn't actually peel off, but the acids in fresh pineapple deliver the same smoothing and deep-cleansing results. Stir together 1 cup crushed pineapple and 1/4 cup pure honey. Apply to dry skin and let the mask soak in for 20 minutes. Rinse with cool water and finish with a light moisturizing lotion.