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Large pores can be one of the most frustrating skin issues for a lot of people. They’re difficult to mask, and knowing how to make pores look smaller can be tough.
There are so many products out there that claim to “shrink pores” or make your pores look less visible, but most of them simply don’t work.
They don’t do the job properly, usually because they don’t actually include any ingredients that are scientifically proven to work.
Essentially, many of these types of products are a waste of money, and when they don’t work, they leave you feeling even more frustrated.
If you’re wondering how to make pores look smaller, then you’ll be glad to know that there are a few really simple things that you can do to reduce the size of your pores.
What causes large pores?
The skin’s pores are vital to skin’s health and your overall health in general.
The pores have two main purposes, which are to:
- Deliver sebum to the surface of your skin
- Expel sweat
Pores contain hair follicles and sebaceous glands – these produce sebum, an oil that keeps skin moisturized and protected. Unfortunately, things like dirt, dead skin cell and excess oil can build up in the pores – stretching them out. This causes them to become enlarged.
If your skin type is oily or combination, then you will be much more likely to develop enlarged pores, but all skin types can experience them.
Unfortunately, the size of your pores is also affected by genetics, meaning some people naturally have larger pores, and others have smaller pores.
How to make Pores look Smaller: Adjusting your Skincare Routine
Here’s what you need to do if you want to reduce the size of them.
Cleanse Twice Per Day
Cleansing your skin twice per day will remove excess oils and prevent dirt and debris from building up. Essentially, it keeps the pores a little cleaner, and helps to prevent them from becoming enlarged.
You don’t want to over-cleanse your skin – this will cause issues, like irritation, but a simple cleanse using a gel cleanser twice per day is enough.
- Product recommendation: Simple Kind to Skin Refreshing Facial Wash Gel.
Add a BHA into your Skincare Routine
If you’re wondering how to make pores look smaller, then you should definitely add beta hydroxy acid to your skincare routine.
When it comes to reducing the size of the pores, there’s really no better ingredient.
Beta hydroxy acid, or salicylic acid as it’s also called, is a chemical exfoliant that is lipid soluble. This means that it’s able to go through the skin’s sebum and into the pores where it removes dead skin cells, excess oils and other debris.
Other chemical exfoliants, like glycolic acid and lactic acid, and manual methods of exfoliation, like using a washcloth, only exfoliate the surface of the skin – whereas salicylic acid is able to actually go into the pores and clear them out, reducing their size.
Always look for products that you leave on the skin – cleansers containing salicylic acid won’t do anything, because they don’t stay on the skin long enough to work.
- Product recommendation: Paula’s Choice RESIST Daily Pore-Refining Treatment 2% BHA
Look for Products that Contain Niacinamide
Another excellent ingredient that makes pores smaller is niacinamide. This ingredient, also known as vitamin B3, benefits your skin in a number ways.
Its aids an uneven skin tone and improves the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, it also brightens dull skin. But, that’s not all.
A number of studies have found that niacinamide also improves the appearance of the pores. One of the reasons this ingredient is so good for reducing the size of the pores is because it reduces the skin’s oil production, meaning that there’s less of it to build up within your pores.
As with salicylic acid, niacinamide works best in leave-on products, like serums, toners and moisturizers.
- Product recommendation: Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Serum Fragrance Free
Use a Clay Mask (but be careful of which one you choose)
For smaller pores, another addition you should make to your skincare routine is a clay mask. Clay masks work really well for minimizing the size of the pores. This is because they remove oil from the skin – and again, if oil builds up in the pores, it causes them to look larger. So, clay masks can shrink the size of the pore.
Don’t use a clay mask too often, however, as they can be too drying. Once to twice per week is enough. If your skin is combination, and you have dry patches, then make sure you only use the clay mask in the oily areas.
Once you have used it, always apply a good moisturizer right after it to re-hydrate your skin.
- Product recommendation: Skin Balancing Oil-Absorbing Mask
Closing Thoughts: How to make pores look smaller
There’s no way to get rid of large pores overnight unfortunately, but with a consistent skincare routine, which includes the right ingredients and products, you can reduce their size over just a short period of time. So, if you’re wondering how to make pores look smaller, then follow these tips.