What are Enlarged Pores and How To Shrink Them

Looking for that blurred skin look -- you know the flawless, airbrushed glow? Of course, you are -- it’s a high request that we receive at Pretty Please all the time. Our Founder, Jennifer Rasa encounters this request during skin consultations from clients looking to shrink their pores or get rid of them altogether. While you can’t exactly erase pores, you can tighten and shrink their appearance with a healthy skin regimen and a professional touch. So, let's get into what causes large pores and what you can do to reduce the appearance to achieve smooth flawless skin.

What are Pores?

Pores are small openings in the skin that contains a sebaceous gland that produces sebum. These tiny gateways provide a path for sebum to reach the top of the skin and lubricate the surface. The trouble occurs when dead skin and free radicals block the opening, causing congestion and oil build-up. This congestion can lead to textured skin and breakouts.

Do Pores Open And Close?

If you mean “shrink and enlarge”, then yes, but our Pretty Please Founder, Jennifer Rasa, says, “despite this myth, pores do not open and close, they’re always open, which is healthy for your skin”. Pores play the role of helping your skin stay moisturized -- without them, your skin would sadly dry out, so think of pores as your “frenemy”. With that being said your pores can shrink and enlarge in size depending on the health of your skin.

What Causes Large Pores?

Enlarged pores are caused by a few factors -- congestion, the aging process, and also genetics. Here’s a breakdown of how each one can produce enlarged pores.

1. Oil + Impurities

A mixture of dirt, oil, and environmental impurities can throw your skin pH off balance as well as allow those impurities to sink deeper into your pores causing congestion. Once your skin experiences congestion, that clogged pore is now blocking the exit for natural sebum to be released. When this happens, your skin will overproduce sebum which causes the skin/pore to expand for the sebum to be released and finally flow freely. This problem also causes oily skin -- it simply becomes a chain reaction.

2. Aging

With aging, the skin produces less collagen and elasticity. The skin around your pores loses its firmness and the ability to bounce back -- which causes the pore to expand and stay enlarged.

3. Genetics + Skin Type

A lot of our skin issues are genetic based, so you may be predisposed to larger pores but that doesn’t mean this issue can’t be treated. Your skin type is also a key factor --those with oily skin tend to overproduce sebum naturally, increasing the chances of clogged and enlarged pores.

The Best Products Shrink Large Pores

Now that you know the ways enlarged pores can be developed, we put together a few tips and regimens you can use to treat the problem. Again while you can’t make large pores disappear completely, you can reduce their appearance. Using chemical exfoliators, clarifying cleansers, and nourishing toners can assist with treating this issue.

1. Chemical Exfoliants

Lactic Acid is a great chemical exfoliant that is used to remove dead skin cells and reduce blockage. The first step to minimizing pores is to clear build-up and congestion, so keeping your pores clean will combat the need for your pores to expand any further. Our Skin Experts at Pretty Please would recommend our Triple Layer Facial to exfoliate your skin, removing dry, dead skin for a clean and clear look and feel.

2. Clarifying Cleansers

A deep cleanse is just what your skin needs to tackle any dirt and oil build-up. Clarifying cleansers will treat excess oil production and the loss of elasticity. If you pair a deep cleanse with lactic acid treatment, you will be giving your skin/pores an overload of skincare goodness!

3. A Pore-fect Toner

Reach for a nourishing and refreshing toner to maintain your exfoliated and deeply cleansed skin. A travel-size toner to use while on the go is perfect to keep your skin in check. Using a toner with peppermint, glycolic acid, and aloe vera will keep your skin balanced, and clear your pores throughout the day. A few spritzes will also re-energize properties to give your skin a bright and radiant glow.

Skin Care Routine For Large Pores

When thinking about your day-to-day skincare routine, you have a cleanser, exfoliator, toner, serum, and moisturizer - right? So there’s not much adjusting in the routine as much as changing up the products. You can easily minimize the look of large pores with a targeted routine. For those of you who are new to skincare, we put together a little step-by-step regimen for you.

1. Cleanse & Exfoliate To Unclog Pores

Above we discussed the combo between lactic acid and a deep cleanse. For this, we would recommend a serum that has lactic acid as a key ingredient and pair it with a clarifying cleanse using a glycolic based cleanser. This combo is ideal for those with oily skin as well, because having a cleansing and exfoliation combo are essential steps for enlarged pores. This routine will remove sebum from the skin’s surface and relieve pore congestion, allowing your pores to shrink to their normal size.

2. Minimize Pores With A Toner

Reach for your “pore-fect” toner as this is a step you don’t want to skip. After a deep cleanse and exfoliation, your skin will need to be replenished. Using the right toner can balance your skin complexion, and provide a layer of hydration.

3. A Detox Facial

If you have extra time and you’re in the mood for a little pampering, treat yourself to a detoxing face mask. Clay or charcoal-based masks are always a great start to exfoliate the skin, as they absorb excess oils and deep clean pores. However, if you’re in the mood for a professional touch, we offer an Organic Peel at Pretty Please that can be added on to any signature facial for an extra detox treatment to your skin.

4. Moisturize

Yes, even if you have oily skin, moisturizing is a must! Moisturizers are more than just a form of hydration; they offer nourishing ingredients that all skin-types benefit from. Jennifer Rasa would recommend using an oil-free moisturizer if oily skin is your skin-type. She would suggest leaning towards a gel-based moisturizer to hydrate and neutralize your skin.

Have we answered all your pore related questions? Feel free to reach out to one of our Skin Experts if you have more questions or set up a skin consultation at our NY location.

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Pretty Please 

Facial Spa, New York City

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