All About Skin

A natural approach to clogged pores

Julia March

Julia March is one of the top facialists in New York, according to connoisseurs such as New York Magazine, Allure, and us.

Clogged pores and blackheads plague most of us at least some of the time. So we asked Julia March, master facialist who has tended to the complexions of such clear-skinned beauties as Linda Evangelista, Liv Tyler, and various Evas (Herzigova and Mendes), to help us figure out how to put an end to clogged-pore aggravation — once and for all.

AYLA: What are blackheads, and why are they so stubborn? No matter how many times I scrub my skin, they’re still there!
Julia: Those blackheads are clogged pores, and the oil inside the pores darkens as it oxidizes. But if you scrub excessively, you’ll end up irritating your skin. What you need is a product that will dissolve those oil plugs.

AYLA: What are the best products to use?
Julia: Here are a few options -
• Using an oil-based cleanser can help a lot. Oil attracts oil, so this will help take the excess oil out — then, you can follow that up with a mild foaming cleanser to rinse it all off. I definitely recommend double cleansing like this in the evening for clients who struggle with blackheads.
Note from Ayla: try MyHavtorn's Organic Facial Cleanser or Luzern's Hydra Cleansing Emulsion NUIT. Both work best when removed with a muslin cloth or, for more delicate complexions, a softer cleansing pad. Follow it up with one of our favorite mild foaming cleansers, the 37Actives Cleansing Treatment.
• Glycolic and salicylic acids can also work well, but be careful. If you use salicylic acid all the time, your skin can become very dry, which isn’t going to clear up your skin. If you over-dry it, your skin just gives your body a signal that its surface is too dry, and you begin to create more oil to replenish your skin’s lipid barrier.
Note from Ayla: Luzern's Serum Clarify boasts a hefty amount of willow bark extract, a natural source of salicylic acid, and it can be applied all over the face without fear of dryness. 

• Clay masks are a great choice to absorb some of the oil. Apply it to specific problem areas.
Note from Ayla: try The Organic Pharmacy’s Purifying Seaweed Clay Mask — it contains very high-quality clay along with soothing seaweed and antioxidant pine bark

About Julia March: Julia is a skin care therapist who specializes in facials exclusively. From June 2000 until July 2002 she was the senior aesthetician at one of the most prestigious salons in NYC, where she offered treatments to celebrities, models and editors including Eva Herzigova, Liv Tyler, and Miranda Brooks. She began her own practice in Soho in September 2002. According to authorities including Allure, New York Magazine, and us, she’s one of the best facialists in New York.

Learn more about Julia’s impressive background (or try to get a coveted appointment) here


Any topic discussed in this article is not intended as medical advice. If you have a medical concern, please check with your doctor.

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