13 July 2018

5 types of zits better left alone

Whether you’re 13 or 31, a natural impulse when spotting a zit is to pop it.

Some are small, some are large, some red and others white. All of us get them at one point in our lives: zits.

Whether you’re 13 or 31, a natural impulse when spotting a zit is to pop it.

But Dr Dorothy Meintjies, a dermatologist from Centurion, Gauteng, warns there are certain types of zits which you shouldn’t touch if you want to avoid infection and scarring.

The following five types of zits are better left alone.


It’s tempting to want to play with or pop an ingrown hair. But don’t.

“It could lead to inflammation and permanent scarring,” Dr Meintjies warns. If the hair is buried deeply under the dermis, a dermatologist will have to remove it with a sterile needle.


Cold sores aren’t actually zits at all. They are caused by a virus and are highly contagious.

When a cold sore starts forming, you’ll feel it happening – the spot where it’s about to emerge will be super sensitive and tingly. Before a cold sore forms, it looks like a group of small, clear blisters. Pimples or zits, on the other hand, are red or yellow.


These are small, white spots that sometimes form on your face and which you might try to pop, but can’t. Dr Natasha Cook, a dermatologist, says that’s because this type of zit has no opening on the skin’s surface and was formed the same way a cyst forms – under the skin.

“Get a professional [such as a dermatologist] to break the cyst under the skin using a fine needle,” she recommends.


The fancy name for this is keratosis pilaris. The layman’s term refers to the skin having the appearance of a chicken after its feathers have been plucked.

The condition is mainly found in children and most people outgrow it. Dr Cook says it’s completely harmless.

“The best treatment is with a cream that cleanses the cells. Vitamin A can also help,” she advises. 


“This type of acne needs to be left well alone – it can leave permanent scarring on your face,” Dr Cook says.

If you suffer from acne, your best bet for treatment is visiting a dermatologist who can prescribe relevant medication and creams.


“Black and white heads,” Dr Meintjies says. “But they have to be on the skin’s surface and always use a tissue [to cover your fingers to avoid infection] when you pop it.”

Sources:; Thisisinsider