Although you can’t change the size of your pores, home techniques can help minimize their appearance. Here’s how.
1. Assess your skin care products
It may be time to switch up the skin care products you use on a regular basis. If you’re using any products designed to clear excess sebum and acne, you could be working against yourself. Short-term use is fine, but they can actually irritate your skin with long-term use.
These products rely on active ingredients such as salicylic acid to remove the top layers of your skin. This produces a drying effect, leading your pores to look smaller. But if your skin becomes too dry, your sebaceous glands increase sebum production to replenish the lost moisture. This leads you back to oily skin. make sure that all your products are noncomedogenic. That means that they are water-based. Comedogenic, or oil-based, products are especially off-limits if you have oily skin. Too much oil can lead to large pores.
2. Cleanse your face
The best types of cleansers get rid of excess dirt and oil without completely stripping your skin of moisture. For large pores related to oily skin, look for a gel-based cleanser. Normal to dry skin can benefit from creamy cleansers.
No matter what skin type you have, avoid cleansers that contain soap or scrubbing agents. These can make pores look bigger.But even the best cleansers won’t do you any good if they aren’t used properly. Be sure to:
Wet your face with warm water (not hot, not cold).
Massage the cleanser in circles around your entire face and neck for at least 30 to 60 seconds.
Rinse thoroughly and pat your skin dry. (No rubbing!)
Repeat this process every morning and night to balance your skin and keep your pores in good health.
3. Exfoliate with AHAs or BHAs
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends exfoliating just one to two times per week. Exfoliation helps get rid of excess flakes that can clog your pores without over-stripping your skin. If you’re currently having an acne breakout, skip your exfoliation session to avoid irritating your pimples.
If you can, opt for exfoliants with either alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) or beta-hydroxy acids (BHAs). BHAs are also known as salicylic acids and shouldn’t be used if you’re allergic to aspirin. Although both ingredients can maximize your exfoliating benefits, BHAs can also penetrate deep into the pores to treat acne.
When it comes to large pores, the key is to choose a light and water-based moisturizer.
5. Use a clay mask
Clay masks can help remove oil, dirt, and dead skin deep inside your pores to make them look smaller. You can use these once or twice per week, but not on the same days that you exfoliate. Exfoliating and using a clay mask in the same day can be tough on your skin and increase your risk of irritation.
6. Wear sunscreen every day
Sunscreen is a must-have for everyone, so don’t let oily skin hold you back. Sun damage not only increases your long-term risk of cancer and wrinkles, but it can also dry out your skin and make your pores look bigger.
Use a product with an SPF of at least 30. You should apply it at least 15 minutes before you head outside. You can also choose moisturizers and foundations that contain SPF in them.
7. Don’t sleep with makeup on
Falling asleep with your makeup on is detrimental to your skin. When left on overnight, cosmetics can combine with dirt, oil, and bacteria left over from the day and clog up your pores. This can make them look larger the next day when you wake up.
That’s why it’s so important to wash your makeup off at night, no matter how tired you are or how late you get home. For added benefit, you can also use a makeup-removing product before cleansing
8. Stay hydrated
In addition to using the right products, good, old-fashioned water can also benefit your pores and overall skin health. Specifically, water helps by hydrating your skin internally,
removing toxins from your pores, and improving your overall complexion
A good rule of thumb is to aim for at least eight glasses of water or other liquids each day. If plain water isn’t your forte, try adding flavor with lemon, cucumber, or berries.