What Are Milia Cysts?

Milia are harmless keratinous cysts with diameters typically 3 mm or smaller that occur both infants and adults. Also referred to as “milia en plaque”, they may be linked with genodermatoses or blistering diseases.

Milia are often self-healing and will usually resolve within a few months in babies or children, while in adults they are usually removed by de-roofing the lesion with needle or blade and extracting its contents, or cryotherapy (freezing).

What is Milia?

Milia are small white cysts that resemble acne but aren’t actually blemishes; instead they form beneath the skin without appearing red or inflamed.

Milialar can either be primary or secondary. Congenital milia occurs naturally at birth, while secondary forms may result from something that clogs the pores, such as injury or burn, long-term use of topical steroids cream, etc.

Since milia are trapped deep under the skin rather than within a pore, it is wise not to try popping them yourself; that could result in infection and scarring. Professional treatment often works well and quickly eliminate milia quickly and painlessly – such as having a dermatologist or esthetician perform a simple procedure that breaks up hardened keratin plugs to allow milia to surface at once for removal – providing painless and non-invasive solutions.


Milia cysts resemble small white or yellow bumps with firm surfaces, similar to pimples but without any symptoms such as itching or pain. They’re most often seen around the eyes and nose but may also form elsewhere on the body such as hair follicles and sweat ducts. Newborns frequently develop them as their skin learns how to exfoliate naturally – typically they will clear on its own within weeks or months without treatment needed; older kids, teens and adults often develop them after being injured; they can even occur due to genetic skin conditions like discoid lupus and lichen planus.

Do not pick at milia as this could damage your skin and worsen symptoms. Instead, consult your dermatologist to remove them using de-roofing; in which they pierce cysts with a needle or blade before sealing them using hot wire sealers; they can also be frozen off using liquid nitrogen cryotherapy; curattage surgery is another solution in which an anesthetized area is scooped out before cauterization seals the wound to complete removal of cysts and seal it closed again afterwards.


Milia are small white bumps caused by trapped dead skin cells beneath the surface of your skin. Your body usually rids itself of these dead cells by shedding them off and replacing them with fresh cells from underneath; but when this process becomes disrupted, new layers can trap older ones beneath and harden into hard lumps beneath your new ones causing hardening of this process.

Neonatal milia is the most frequently occurring type, usually affecting newborns and infants but may also affect older children and adults. Unfortunately, it cannot be prevented and often clears up on its own within weeks or so.

Secondary milia is less prevalent but still possible for anyone to develop. It occurs when the lining of your pores becomes damaged, or when sweat ducts become blocked. Other possible causes may include epidermolysis bullosa blistering disease or long-term use of corticosteroid creams – commonly seen on facial features but also possible elsewhere on your body.


Milia are typically removed on their own in weeks to months for newborns without treatment, while adults and children can seek advice from dermatologists or skin care specialists regarding removal techniques to resolve them.

Squeezing or popping milia on your own can cause severe skin damage, potentially leading to scarring. Instead, seek professional extraction of cysts through professional extraction with tweezers; the procedure requires no anesthetics and takes only minutes!

Future strategies should focus on keeping a consistent skincare regimen that includes gentle cleansing, exfoliation, moisturization and sunscreen usage that suits your skin type. Regular visits to a dermatologist or skin care specialist may also help prevent future outbreaks of milia; for example if they recur on your face then applying an exfoliant that contains salicylic acid or alpha hydroxy acids to keep keratin levels under control can be helpful in controlling them.