What is Milialar? Are milialar painful?

Our skin, being the largest organ of our body, often acts as a mirror reflecting our internal health. While it generally gives hints about our overall well-being, it can sometimes present challenges like the appearance of milialar, commonly referred to as “milk spots” or “oil seeds”. This article dives deep into the world of milialar, exploring their nature, causes, and how to manage them.

Understanding Milialar

Milialar are tiny cystic bumps that surface on the skin. Appearing usually as white or yellowish pimples, they are characterized by the trapping of dead skin cells beneath the skin’s surface. Unlike acne, they don’t have a pore, making conventional popping ineffective and potentially harmful.

Identifying Milialar

Size and Color: Resembling pinheads, these cysts often appear in white or yellowish hues, making them look like minute pearls.

Common Locations: While milialar can surface anywhere on the body, they predominantly appear on the face, especially around the cheekbones and eyes. Infrequent occurrences on the nose, forehead, and upper torso have also been reported.

The Underlying Causes

Various factors contribute to the emergence of milialar:

  1. Keratin Trapping: Overproduction of keratin, a skin protein, can lead to its entrapment, causing milia.
  2. Damage to Oil Glands: Skin trauma, like burns, can damage oil glands and sweat ducts leading to milia.
  3. Cosmetics and Skincare Products: Certain products, especially inappropriate ones, might clog pores, triggering milia.
  4. Genetic Factors: Some individuals are genetically predisposed to develop milia.

Medical Evaluation

Diagnosis is usually based on a visual examination by dermatologists. It’s essential to provide a complete medical history, current medications, and skincare routines for an accurate diagnosis. Occasionally, a biopsy might be necessary.

Types of Milialar

  1. Primary Milia: The most prevalent type, affecting all age groups, caused by clogged sweat ducts.
  2. Secondary Milia: Arises due to skin damage or procedures like dermabrasion.
  3. Neonatal Milia: Common in newborns, these harmless cysts naturally subside within weeks.
  4. Milia en Plaque: Characterized by a cluster of milia over an inflamed skin patch.

Aging and Milialar

Skin transformations over time can influence milialar development. As we age, our skin might not regenerate as effectively, leading to trapped keratin. Moreover, sun exposure, hormonal imbalances, poor diet, and smoking can elevate the risks.

Treatment Options

  • Natural Healing: Often, milialar resolve themselves without intervention.
  • Dermatological Procedures: Treatments include cryotherapy, laser therapy, chemical peels, and microdermabrasion.
  • Topical Retinoids: Can assist in milia removal.
  • Home Remedies: Gentle exfoliation and maintaining a proper skincare regimen can be beneficial.

Preventive Measures

  1. Protecting the skin from excessive sun exposure is crucial.
  2. Over-the-counter medications with lactic acid, salicylic acid, or benzoyl peroxide can be beneficial.
  3. For severe cases, oral antibiotics might be prescribed.


Milialar, while generally harmless, can be a cosmetic concern for many. Recognizing its causes and potential treatments can help in addressing the issue effectively. It’s crucial to consult a dermatologist for persistent or concerning milia to get a tailored treatment plan.


  • Are milialar painful? Typically, they’re painless, posing more of a cosmetic issue.
  • Can I pop them? Due to the absence of a pore, trying to pop them might cause skin irritation or infections.
  • Do milialar disappear naturally? Often, they can resolve on their own but might persist in some cases.
  • What are the treatment options? Treatments range from chemical peels, topical retinoids to professional extraction by dermatologists.
  • Are there home remedies for milialar? While some opt for home remedies like warm compresses, it’s advisable to consult a dermatologist for an effective treatment plan.

This comprehensive guide aims to provide insights into milialar, equipping individuals with knowledge and enabling them to make informed skincare decisions.

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