9 DIY Face Masks to Unclog Pores

Updated: Mar. 03, 2021

Got blackheads? These natural shrinking treatments are toxin-free and can be made with products you probably have in your kitchen right now.

Fresh papaya cut in a half
Stefanie Metzger/Shutterstock

Pumpkin papaya facial mask

According to Puristry, an organic skincare products company that shared this recipe, the enzymes in pumpkin and papaya help break down skin’s top layer of dead cells. For an even deeper exfoliating effect, gently massage the mask into skin for 30 seconds, then allow it to set.

What you’ll need:

2 tablespoons pure pumpkin puree

1/2 cup diced fresh papaya
2 teaspoons fresh, organic coffee grounds
1 teaspoon Purity Restorative Facial Oil or jojoba oil


  1. Mix pumpkin and papaya in a food processor on low until evenly combined.
  2. Whisk in facial oil and coffee grounds until smooth and evenly dispersed.
  3. Apply to face and neck, then leave on for 15 minutes.
  4. Rinse with warm water.

Stop these bad habits and you’ll unclog pores naturally.

Oatmeal, milk, honey, orange, orange juice, bananas on a white countertop

Orange-honey facial mask

Did you know that honey is naturally antibacterial? Because it’s so full of antioxidants, the sticky substance is great for acne prevention and tissue regeneration, according to the mask’s creator, Rochelle Maribojoc of Spa Pechanga. What’s more, the citric acid in orange juice aids in skin exfoliation and the sea salt preserves the mixture, per Maribojoc, so it will keep in your shower or bathroom unrefrigerated for at least one and a half weeks.

What you’ll need:

½ cup raw honey
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice (the more pulp, the better)
1 tablespoon sea salt


  1. Mix honey and orange juice to form a paste. If needed, add more honey to thicken.
  2. Apply to dry, clean skin and leave on for about 15 minutes.
  3. Rinse well with lukewarm water.

Until you unclog your pores, use these makeup tricks to fake a flawless complexion.

matcha green tea powder in ceramic plate on white wooden table

Green tea facial mask

This mask addresses acne linked to oily skin. “Excess sebum production is associated with pore enlargement and is one of the causes of acne,” says Rebecca Lee, RN, founder of RemediesForMe.com. “EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) found in green tea inhibits an enzyme found in sebaceous glands and reduces sebum secretion, which is associated with enlarged pores.”

What you’ll need:

1 tablespoon green tea powder
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar


  1. Mix all the ingredients.
  2. Apply the paste over your face–avoiding your mouth, eyes, and eyebrows.
  3. Massage the paste for 1 to 2 minutes in slow circular movements.
  4. Leave on for 10 to 15 minutes, then wash off.

Here are 11 health benefits of green tea you probably haven’t heard before.

Aloe vera and cucumber with honey on white fabric background
NUM LPPHOTO/Shutterstock

Cinnamon and aloe vera facial mask

“Use this mask to remove blackheads and unclog pores,” Lee says. However, if you have sensitive skin, this mask may be too irritating for you.

What you’ll need:

1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon honey
1⁄4 cup aloe vera gel


  1. Mix all the ingredients together.
  2. Apply the paste over your face–avoiding your mouth, eyes, and eyebrows.
  3. Rub the paste over the face for one minute, in slow circular movements.
  4. Leave on for ten minutes then wash off with lukewarm water.
Clay powder and water on a white table

Apple cider vinegar facial mask

This blend of essential oils acts as a powerful disinfectant, and its astringent properties help rid the skin of excess oiliness, says Kaycee Colledge of doTERRA, who shared the mask recipe. She notes that you can buy bentonite clay at your local health food store. Do not use a metal bowl or spoon when mixing, as it can make it less effective.

What you’ll need:

2 teaspoons bentonite clay
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 drop frankincense oil
1 drop lavender oil
1 drop melaleuca oil


  1. Combine clay and vinegar in a bowl and stir until well combined. )For a thicker mask, add an additional ½ teaspoon of clay.)
  2. Add in essential oils.
  3. Apply to clean skin, avoiding the areas around your eyes and mouth.
  4. Let dry for 5 to 15 minutes.
  5. Rinse with warm water and follow with moisturizer.

Don’t miss the 15 ways apple cider vinegar benefits your health.

Activated charcoal powder in a glass bowl and pills on a spoon on white table

Charcoal powder facial mask

“This mask will help remove toxins, dirt, grime, buildup, and irritants on a regular basis and can be used nightly,” says Britt Brandon, author of Baking Soda for Health: 100 Amazing and Unexpected Uses for Sodium Bicarbonate.

What you’ll need:

1⁄4 cup baking soda
1 tablespoon activated charcoal powder
1⁄4 cup aloe vera gel
1 tablespoon lemon juice


  1. In a small dish, combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.
  2. Using your fingertips, apply the mask to the skin with gentle circular motions until your entire face is coated.
  3. Allow the mask to set for 10 to 15 minutes, then rinse with warm water.

Check out more recipes to make an easy homemade face mask.

Coconut flakes in a bowl on a wooden table
New Africa/Shutterstock

Coconut peppermint facial mask

“Heat up your coconut oil either on the stovetop or in the microwave to liquefy it, but make sure not to overheat; 30 seconds in the microwave should do it,” says Samuel Hetz MD, CCFP, medical director of Concept Medical, who shares this mask recipe. “This will make mixing the ingredients easier.”

What you’ll need:

1 cup of brown sugar

1 cup of granulated sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
1/4 cup almond oil
1/4 cup coconut oil

4 drops of peppermint essential oil


  1. Combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and cocoa powder in a large bowl.
  2. Mix in the coconut and almond oils and stir until everything is well combined.
  3. Add the peppermint extract and make sure to mix the mass well to have it spread evenly throughout the scrub.
  4. Transfer to a Mason jar and store in the fridge for up to three months.
Ginger, cayenne, turmeric and honey on a white table

Turmeric facial mask

The ancient spice does more than flavor food—it may brighten skin, tighten pores, and even reduce inflammation, according to a 2017 study of its health benefits in the journal Food. Lindsay Freedman, food blogger behind TheToastedPineNut shares this recipe.

What you’ll need:

1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon manuka honey
1 teaspoon organic extra virgin coconut oil


  1. Mix together to form a paste.
  2. Spread evenly on face and keep on for 30 minutes.
  3. Rinse with warm water and a gentle cleanser

Find out more about turmeric’s benefits for your skin and hair.

Rice powder in wooden bowl on white table
Arisara T/Shutterstock

Rice flour facial mask

“Rice exfoliates the skin leaving it smooth, reducing the appearance of pores, and giving a healthy glow,” says Diana Ralys, owner of Radiance Wellness Spa in Santa Monica, who shares this mask.

What you’ll need:

1 tablespoon aloe juice
3 tablespoons rice flour
1 tablespoon honey (preferably raw)
1 teaspoon spirulina
1 teaspoon chlorella
1 teaspoon lemon juice


  1. Whisk all ingredients together in small bowl.
  2. Apply to face and neck.
  3. Leave for 15 minutes, then rinse with warm water.