15 Effective Face Masks If You Want to Prevent and Get Rid of Blackheads

Blackheads are a special kind of annoying. They're pesky, persistent, and seem to be more difficult to clear out than other forms of skin congestion. Luckily, if you struggle with these particular kinds of invaders, you've come to the right place. If you have blackheads, dermatologists have recs to help you banish them for good.

I enlisted the help of two board-certified derms, Marisa Garshick, MD, and Azadeh Shirazi, MD for the full scoop on the matter. Their advice? Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate. "When dealing with blackheads or to prevent the formation, it can be important to use a retinoid to help regulate skin cell turnover to prevent pores from becoming clogged," says Garshick. "Additionally using salicylic acid, a beta hydroxy acid, can be helpful to penetrate deep into pores and help to unclog them as well as exfoliate away dead skin. Charcoal and clay-based products can also help to reduce the appearance of blackheads by drawing out the contents of the pores."

Shirazi also adds that AHA or BHA clearing pads can be helpful when dealing with blackheads, too. "My patients love [my] Clarify Pads with glycolic acid and 2% salicylic to treat this type of acne and improve skin texture. It comes with 60 pads and they're really easy to use. Some like to use them as both a cleansing wipe and toner in one." Shirazi also says if you prefer a good mask over treatment pads, it's best to use it one to three times a week to keep your pores clear. That being said, keep scrolling below for the best face masks for blackheads as picked by dermatologists.

1. GlamGlow Supermud Charcoal Instant Treatment Mask 

"Combining six exfoliating acids and activated charcoal, this mask helps to unclog pores and is a great option for those with oily or combination skin."—Marisa Garshick

2. St. Ives Blackhead Clearing Scrub

"Containing a combination of physical and chemical exfoliants, including 1% salicylic acid, this helps to unclog the pores and decongest the skin."—Garshick

3. Dermalogica Clear Start Blackhead Clearing Fizz Mask

"The fizzing formula works to clear pores and blackheads while also using sulfur and kaolin clay to reduce breakouts and oiliness."—Garshick

4. Paula's Choice Clear Purifying Clay Mask

"Using three different clays, this helps to absorb excess oil, controlling shine, while also using green tea and willow herb to calm redness."Garshick

5. Bliss the Detoxifier Charcoal Facial Mask

"This is a great option for someone looking for a sheet mask. It uses binchotan charcoal fibers to help exfoliate and purify the skin."—Garshick

6. Acne Free Kaolin Clay Detox Mask

"This charcoal and kaolin clay mask helps to unclog the pores and is a great option for those with oily or combination skin."Garshick

7. Cetaphil Pro DermaControl Purifying Clay Mask

"This mask uses white clay and apple fruit extract to help exfoliate and eliminate dead skin cells, while also working to unclog the pores."—Garshick

8. Good Science Beauty Purifying Facial

"This mask is good for those looking to clear out pores but also with sensitive skin. It contains willow bark to help clear out pores as well as Oligopeptide-10, derived from plant amino acid."Garshick



9. PCA Skin Purifying Mask

"This mask contains red algae and French red clay to purify in addition to Vitamins A and E, as well as red wine extract to help soothe and feed the skin while neutralizing free radicals."Garshick

10. Innisfree Pore Clearing Clay Mask

"By gently exfoliating and absorbing excess oil, this helps to reduce the appearance of the pores."—Garshick

11. AziMD Skincare Detox Mask

"This detoxifying mask with kaolin clay and charcoal powder draws out oil, dead skin buildup, and impurities trapped in your pores for a clear complexion. What's unique is the clinical strength sulfur that calms redness and inflammation and treats breakouts from acne and rosacea."Garshick

12. Kiehl's Rare Earth Deep Pore Minimizing Cleansing Clay Mask

"Kaolin clay draws out dirt and toxins that clog pores. Aloe Vera [in this formula also] soothes and hydrates the skin."—Azadeh Shirazi

13. Caudalie Vinopure Purifying Clay Mask 

"Enriched with white clay and grapeseed oil, this mask absorbs impurities and reduces the appearance of pores." —Shirazi

14. Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Sukari Babyfacial 

"This is a potent mask with 25% alpha hydroxy acid to quickly exfoliate dead skin cells, dissolve buildup in pores and blackheads, and improve skin texture. It's formulated with ingredients such as matcha and milk thistle to help with calming redness. It's a good weekly option."—Shirazi

15. GlamGlow Supersmooth Acne-Clearing 5-Minute Mask to Scrub

"This face mask doubles as a scrub to help clear acne and blackheads. It's formulated with salicylic acid to dissolve the debris packed in blackheads."—Shirazi