You may be prone to getting little white bumps around your eyes, cheeks or other areas on your face. These are most likely milia, which are tiny superficial keratinous cysts. They form when an accumulation of cells cannot escape through the top layer of your skin. Milia are not easily removed because they have no pore. There are some milia creams that are used to treat this skin condition.
Causes of Milia
There are many reasons why you may have milia. Genetics plays a part since some families tend to have more skin problems than others. Certain skin diseases, such as Porphyria Cutanea Tarda, where the skin blisters, may contribute to milia, but it is an unusual disorder. Excessive sun exposure can contribute to your facial skin becoming thicker, and then your skin cells have difficulty being exfoliated. One of the most common causes of milia is from using heavy skin or hair care products that smother your skin. Some lipsticks and lip balms can also cause milia around the lips. Fluoride toothpaste irrigation around the lips can also be a factor.
Exfoliate Your Skin
If you have milia, exfoliation is the first step you should try. You need to keep your epidermis thin and smooth so milia are less prone to form. This does not mean that you should scrub hard on your skin. There are gentle exfoliating products on the market that can help. There are also home microdermabrasion systems that can help to smooth out your facial skin. Facial peels and pads can also exfoliate the surface skin cells. It is not recommended that you try to remove the milia by yourself. You may cause an infection and make the situation worse.
Skin Rejuvenation Program
After exfoliating the skin on your face, you will want to concentrate on a skin rejuvenation program. This should include specially-made milia creams. There are several milia creams available containing ingredients that promote cell turnover. Vitamin A facial creams are effective in a skin rejuvenation program. Be careful with the skin around the eye because it is very sensitive. All moisturisers, sunblocks and night creams should be chosen carefully. There are prescription creams that your doctor can recommend for you that are helpful in reducing milia formation.
See a Dermatologist
Despite your best efforts, you may still have milia that do not go away. You can seek the help of a physician who can extract milia in a sterile environment. The doctor will have a lancet or sterile needle to open the overlying skin. Then a comedone extractor is pushed lightly against the milia and the trapped cells come out. Dermatologists can also give periodic microdermabrasions or glycolic acid peels to help you solve your problem. Milia on the eyelids are best dealt with by your doctor.
You can lessen the likelihood of repeated milia on your face by following a few guidelines. Be aware of what you are putting on your face. Do not use heavy or greasy creams that contain cocoa butter, wheat germ oil, coconut oil or sodium chloride. Make sure your facial products are labelled oil-free or non-comedogenic. Exfoliate on a daily basis. Be careful not to get mousse, hairspray or other hair products on your face.