It is scientifically not feasible to get rid of large pores, however, the appearance of pore size can be minimised. Enlarged pores are primarily caused by high levels of sebum production by the sebaceous gland that is present in every single pore. In addition, a multitude of contributory factors can also cause enlarged pores, blackheads and eventual acne breakouts, such as-
- Reduction of skin elasticity and collagen production
- Unprotected sun exposure
- Thick hair follicles
- Unhealthy lifestyles like smoking, lack of exercise and improper diet
Hence, it is essential to positively regulate oil production by the sebaceous glands and balance the skin's pH levels by incepting a skincare routine that targets this skin concern.
Exfoliate - Gentle exfoliation, at least twice a week is highly recommended for people with oily acne-prone skin. It is essentially done to get rid of dirt, oil and dead skin cells that clog the pores. Make sure to adopt cleansers enriched in salicylic acid, AHAs and BHAs, as they help unclog pores. Additionally, they help brighten skin tone.
Use of alcohol-free toners - Alcohol-free face toners can prominently reduce the appearance of enlarged pores while preventing signs of inflammation and redness caused by conventional alcohol-rich toners. There are multiple benefits of using an alcohol-free toner, such as-
- Balances the pH levels
- Reduces hypersensitivity and dry itchy skin
- Retains moisture levels
- Regulates oil production and lightens pigmentation marks
Remember to opt for toners that are gentle on the skin (alcohol-free), sulphate free and enriched in skin-ameliorating ingredients like allantoin, aloe vera etc.
Use of retinol - Retinol is one of the most efficient and secure methods for refining the skin. It boosts-
- Collagen production
- Increases skin elasticity
- Make skin firm and smooth
Applying it even twice a week can help balance oil production and get rid of dead skin cells, with lessened blackheads and whiteheads.
Daily moisturising -The idea of moisturising oily skin may be counterintuitive. Although, skipping the moisturising ritual can have serious repercussions. In order to compensate for the dehydrated state of the skin, sebaceous glands present in each pore tends to over-produce more oil, thereby clogging pores and triggering an acne reaction that ultimately causes the skin pores to enlarge. However, an oil-free moisturiser can help reduce pore enlargement. After due cleansing, the application of moisturiser can help hydrate and soften the skin. That allows the oil from the sebaceous glands to penetrate more deeply into the skin, rather than staying in the pores on the surface. Thus, moisturizing prevents pores from becoming clogged with oil and reduces their enlarged appearance.
With realistic expectations, let's focus our attention on unclogging and tightening our pores rather than the hope of just erasing them. The truth is that pores cannot be eliminated, but with the correct formulations and ingredients, one can surely lessen enlarged pore visibility.
Here are the key points about the effective ingredients known to prevent pore size expansion:
Witch hazel extract
- Functions as an astringent to tighten pores.
- Calms skin redness/irritation and reduces inflammation.
- Helps reduce oil production and balances skin pH
- Makes the skin more elastic, helping to tighten pores.
- Combined with natural ingredients like esculanta fruit extract, it prevents excessive sebum secretion and strengthens the skin barrier function.
- Improves skin texture and prevents future breakouts
Esculanta fruit extract
- Prevents pore enlargement by supporting the skin's collagen structure.
- Imparts a luminous skin tone.
These ingredients, when incorporated into skincare formulations, can help lessen the visibility of enlarged pores and improve overall skin appearance.
Aloe vera gel - Enlarged pores can be constricted by using aloe vera gel-based skin care products. The gel cleanses and nourishes the skin while clearing clogged pores of oil, dirt and bacteria.
Apple cider vinegar - It has a cleansing effect on the skin, in addition to treating large pores. It tightens the skin matrix, reduces inflammation, and serves as a natural skin toner.
Baking soda - Due to its anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory characteristics, it helps reduce acne breakouts and pimples. It assists in removing dirt, oil and other pollutants and balances the skin’s pH levels.
1. Can certain skincare products or ingredients help reduce pore size?
Yes, certain skincare products and ingredients can help minimize the appearance of enlarged pores. Ingredients like witch hazel extract, niacinamide, salicylic acid, retinol, and alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) can be effective in unclogging pores, reducing oiliness, and improving skin texture, which in turn can make pores less noticeable.
2. Is it possible to shrink pores?
While it is not possible to physically shrink the size of pores, you can make them appear smaller. By using pore-tightening ingredients and following a consistent skincare routine that includes gentle cleansing, exfoliation, and moisturizing, you can help minimize the visibility of pores.
3. Can dehydrated skin develop enlarged pores and trigger acne breakouts?
Any skin types (oily, dry, or combination) has the potential to develop large pores. Dehydrated skin tends to produce more sebum to compensate for the lack of moisture, increasing the likelihood of clogged pores. As pores become clogged with oil and debris, they can appear larger. The best solution for enlarged pores, regardless of skin type, is to use a non-comedogenic moisturiser and sunscreen.
Look for skincare products enriched with the following ingredients:
- Cydonia oblonga leaf extract: Helps soothe and balance the skin.
- Saccharide Isomerate: Provides long-lasting hydration.
- Citric acid: Offers gentle exfoliation and promotes skin renewal.
Using a non-comedogenic moisturiser and sunscreen with these beneficial ingredients can help improve the condition of dehydrated skin, minimise the appearance of enlarged pores, and reduce the likelihood of acne breakouts.