I'm sure fellow blackhead sufferers can agree: On most days, I am willing to do just about anything to get rid of those pesky dark spots. (And why is it that once I've removed them, they seem to come back in droves by the following morning? A girl can only exfoliate so often.)
So when I heard that vlogger Sukhi Mann went so far as to utilize the dental floss in her medicine cabinet as an extraction tool, my first thought was something along the lines of, Yes! A brave pioneer in the relentlessly unforgiving blackhead frontier. Immediately after, my brain flickered toward something that more closely resembled reason: Is this even safe?
As you can see in her video above, Mann starts by steaming her face with a hot towel in order to loosen dirt and grime from pores—an expert-approved start to the extraction process. She then uses a disposable floss pick as you would a metal extractor before finishing up with toner (or, as she suggests, mouthwash).
Our friends at Allure ran the whole process by Beverly Hills–based dermatologist Ava Shamban, MD, who, somewhat surprisingly, gave it a tentative seal of approval. "Since she's using it to essentially scrape the skin, it looks like it would be okay [to replicate] as long as you're not using the [flosser stick] in a sawing motion, cutting into the skin," she says. In other words, use it as gently as you would a metal extractor—though keep in mind that even if the floss is clean, it's technically not sterile.
Shamban does, however, advise against substituting toner with mouthwash, which can severely dry out skin. But given that this pro just approved a DIY hack, we won't try to push our luck.
And on that note, shop our favorite toners below.
Next up, check out the four skincare myths an esthetician wants you to stop believing.