Can You Really Shrink Your Pores?

Reviewed on 6/2/2021

Pore size is genetically determined, so you can't actually shrink pores. You can use pore-minimizing products, cooling treatments and products containing vitamin B3, niacinamide, picolinamide, zinc oxide and collagen to attempt to minimize the appearance of pores.
Pore size is genetically determined, so you can’t actually shrink pores. You can use pore-minimizing products, cooling treatments and products containing vitamin B3, niacinamide, picolinamide, zinc oxide and collagen to attempt to minimize the appearance of pores.

The bad news is that pore size is genetically determined, so you can’t actually shrink pores. However, some products and treatments can minimize the appearance of pores, but none of them are permanent solutions.

  • Pore-minimizing products work by stimulating and plumping the collagen that surrounds pores. The collagen pushes on the walls of the pore, which makes it look smaller. If you are really interested in shrinking pores, look for collagen-boosting skincare.
  • Cooling treatments, such as refrigerated face masks, can restrict pores or reduce the inflammation of irritated blemishes, but pores will never fully close.
  • Pores or hair follicles are needed to help hair grow and let sebum make its way to the surface of the skin. Sebum (oil) protects and hydrates the skin.
  • Collagen production indeed decreases as you age, which is the reason wrinkles form. However, with a healthy diet and skincare routine that uses regular exfoliation and vitamin C, you can keep the collagen in the skin healthy and strong.

Indeed, you can’t close your pores or get rid of them. However, you can take steps to keep them healthy and strong. It’s all about your daily skincare routine. Regular exfoliation is a must. When pores get clogged, they tend to stretch, which makes them look bigger. Exfoliation helps remove dead skin that can clog pores. If your pores bother you a lot, you may consult a dermatologist for office treatments, such as laser therapy, that may visibly reduce the size of pores.

Why do I have large pores compared to others?

Pore size is mostly due to genetic factors. According to the British Journal of Dermatology, they are mainly caused by these three factors: oily skin, age and sex.

  • Pores are small openings in the skin. Human facial skin has thousands of pores and pores are more prominent in certain individuals than in others. 
  • Large pores are caused by a variety of factors and genetics play a huge role in your pore size.
  • Pores exist for a good reason. They provide a way for the body to flush out toxins, regulate temperature and moisturize dry skin. Without them, the body would not be able to sweat and would overheat. 
  • However, excessive dirt and oil buildup can cause acne and large pores can make the skin look older.
  • Large pores are one of the most common skin issues cited for adult Asian females.
  • In general, those who have inherited naturally oily or thick skin are likely to have larger pores because their oil glands are more active and need a bigger opening for releasing oil.
  • In rare cases, some may have dry skin, rather than oily, but still have large pores.

What is the best way to keep pores clean?

Researchers and dermatologists recommend a few products that may help to keep pores clean.

  • Studies show that applying retinol cream may help keep large pores clean as well as give an appearance that pores are small. Retinol cream promotes skin cell turnover and unclogs pores. As a result, pores are emptied from the impurities that give them an oversized appearance.
  • Apart from this, applying vitamin B3 may improve brightness and suppleness. The 24-hour formula also reduces dark spots and the appearance of pores, promising to produce significant results within four weeks.
  • Apply products infused with niacinamide and picolinamide. It strengthens the skin's protective barrier to minimize signs of aging, including oversized pores.
  • Look for creams with collagen. This promotes cell turnover to reduce the appearance of age spots and enlarged pores.
  • Face wash and cleanser with charcoal and witch hazel remove impurities and give pores a tight and firm appearance.
  • Use natural sun protection that contains zinc oxide when you're going to be outdoors, even during the winter. Moisturizing sun protection lotion is another brilliant natural lotion for the body.
  • Keep well hydrated. Apart from cleansing the body, the wonderful effect of water is to fill cells (which are about 80 percent water). When cells are well hydrated, there is less space between the pores.
  • You don't need to always use high-end pharmacy products to tackle skin woes. There are a lot of ingredients that you can find in your kitchen pantry, such as yogurt (which is great for tightening pores), apple cider vinegar (acts as a natural astringent or toner) or coffee and sugar (both of which make excellent natural scrubs).

Keep in mind that like any other part of your skincare regimen, regular application is the key to the best results. While you cannot change the amount of oil the body makes, you can help remove excess oil from the surface of the skin to minimize the appearance of pores. Also, keep the skin foundation strong so that pores do not become dilated. There are several topicals you can employ in your skincare arsenal that are best for minimizing pores.

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References
Medscape Medical Reference

American Academy of Dermatology


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