Enlarged or congested pores have been one of the most commonly asked skincare questions. If you’re wondering about how to minimize the size of your pores and smoother skin, you’re on the right track. In this article, we are going to talk A-Z on what pores really are and how to optimize your skincare routine so you can make it less visible (and yes, we can’t erase them entirely)
Pores are physiologic openings on the surface of your skin that create space for sebum and your hair to make its appearance on your skin. They serve a big important role in regulating how our skin physiologically functions. It allows the sebum to resurface to lubricate our skin, sweat and hair for our body to regulate its temperature and protect from external stressors.
Then, how can one’s skin have much more visible pores than others? There are few things that may affect the size of your pores.
Yes, it runs in the family. When your parents have more visible or less visible pores, it is more likely for you to inherit a similar ‘baseline’ of pore sizes.
2. Skin type
When your oil glands produce too much sebum, it kind of stretches to allow the oil to flow out which creates that “larger” appearance. Moreover, when the sebum got trapped with a lot of other dirt, it clogged the pores and made it more visible to the eyes.
3. Skin’s elasticity
As we age, our skin loses its ability to hold itself as the number of collagen and elastin is reduced. Thus, it makes our pores more prominent to the naked eyes.
We do know that pores are a normal physiologic part of our skin and they are totally necessary for our skin. We know that large pore sizes are less preferable aesthetically, so here are some ways you can minimize the size of your pores with some daily, weekly, and occasional easy steps in your skincare routine!
Daily skin care tips:
These steps are necessary and basic skincare steps to maintain healthy skin with minimal pore sizes.
Cleansing your skin thoroughly is the first step to keep your pores clean. Never skip a night without cleansing your skin. Especially if you have very oily skin, it is necessary to remove not only dirt or makeup but also the buildup of excess sebum on the surface layer of your skin.
When your skin is hydrated and plump, it will create an illusion of less visible pores as it fills up the ‘openings’ of your pores. So, always remember to keep your skin hydrated and seal everything with your favorite moisturizer
Never forget your sunscreen! It is a must-have on everyone’s skincare routine to maintain healthy juicy skin as long as we can. It prevents our skin from ‘aging’ too fast, so we can get a hold of the size of our pores as long as it possibly can.
Daily – Weekly (depend on skin’s tolerance and product type):
Steps that can help prevent clogged pores and loss of skin’s elasticity
AHA, BHA, or PHA help to unclogged your pores and prevent a new one from forming by cutting off the ‘glue’ between your dead skin cells. It allows the sebum to flow more easily and BHA can even get into the inner lining of your pores to allow a more ‘deep cleanse’.
Vitamin A or the king of anti-aging ingredients. A well-known skincare ingredient that has been shown to induce collagen production. Use them daily or weekly depending on your skin’s tolerance and the product you used. It will keep your skin bouncy and make your pores appear ‘smaller’ for longer time.
Occasional skincare tips:
1. Clay mask
Kaolin or bentonite clay are my way to go if I need that extra pick-me-up for an enlarged pore. It works by absorbing any excess sebum on the surface of our skin and the inner pore lining. It gives that temporary ‘pore-shrinking’ effect and perfect if you have any special day coming your way. Make sure to moisturize your skin well every time you need that ‘cleanse’.
Put that magnifying mirror away from you! No one will ever look at you close enough as you are looking into your pores through the magnifying mirror. Stop the stigma of having pores as a skin sin and try to embrace them as a normal physiologic structure of our skin that does its job to keep our skin functioning. Keep it real and stay away from unrealistic poreless expectations.
Pores myth and fact:
1. Myth: Pores open and close
Steam and ice won’t open or close them, respectively. What it does is actually loosen up the sebum and build-up on the pores and allow it to seep into the surface a lot more easily. The ice signals that the sebum to not produce as much oil and thus minimize the size of pores.
2. Myth: It secretes a toxin
A mask that pulls out toxins, or any product that ‘detoxifies’ doesn’t exist. Our pores are not going to secrete any toxins since there are no poisonous/toxic substances, to begin with that can possibly harm our body.