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Out, damned spot! Out, I say! To squeeze or not to squeeze?

In a perfect world we would always recommend not squeezing blemishes because it can break up the infection and spread it under the skin, creating a whole new crop of pimples.

In reality, not squeezing spots is possibly the most ignored piece of sound beauty advice we give! But if you simply must squeeze, here are some basic rules to follow to limit the damage that you can cause:

1. Only squeeze blemishes after a shower or bath when your skin and its oils are soft and malleable.
2. Wrap your fingers in tissue to protect your skin from being bruised or broken by your fingernails.
3. Apply pressure from the sides and the bottom, imagining that you are trying to push a cork out from underneath. Most people squeeze along the top, which just bursts the pocket of infection.
4. Clean the skin afterwards with a toner.

Only squeeze pimples that have heads—just leave those big blind pimples alone! They are swollen and are best treated with anti-inflammatories. Squeezing them will only make them worse and then they will take even longer to heal.

It is also very important to protect acne- and pimple-prone skin from the damage of UV radiation. Sun protection is a must as post-acne scarring often stimulates post-inflammatory scarring, which darkens with sun exposure.

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