It has to be the number one thing I am asked about. What can I do about my large pores? How do I close my pores? I hate my pores.
There are things you can do to minimise their appearance slightly. But unfortunately if you have large pores, that's just your face and you may have to learn to love them.
So what is a pore?
A pore is an indentation in your skin where the sebaceous gland lives and is also know as a hair follicle, although not all pores have hairs present. The sebaceous gland produces the oil your skin needs to function properly. This is known as sebum. If you produce oil in large quantities, or did in the past, you may have large pores. If you have dry skin, you may not be able to see your pores very clearly and you may only have large pores in the oilier parts of your face, the nose, chin and forehead.
How do you minimise them?
First thing I will say here is that you cannot close them. If a product says ‘helps to close your pores’ it's telling fibs and you shouldn't buy it. If you want poreless skin, its just not an achievable goal, only dolls and people on instagram have poreless skin.
Remember that your skin is a functioning organ and an integral part of your body and of your life. It needs to excrete sweat, make Vit D, secrete oil, regulate body temperature, feel sensations and express emotions, so there are going to be some signs that it is functioning and a few fine lines and some large pores are signs of this.
However there are 2 ingredients that may help you if your large pores are bothering you.
Vitamin A and Salicylic Acid.
If you have large pores and an oily skin type, really cleaning your skin effectively with a salicylic acid based cleanser can help you minimise their appearance slightly. Salicylic Acid is an ingredient that is oil soluble and great for dealing with a build up in your pores. The oilier you are the more often you use it. Look for Skingredients Sally Cleanse in your pharmacy or on skingredients.com, use it twice a week and build up to more usage if you need it.
Vitamin A, to be honest, should be used by everyone. It is an integral part of any skin routine and if you care about your skin and you're not using it, get on the Vit A train.
Go for a Retinyl Palmitate version of Vitamin A as found in Environ AVST, this plant based form of Vit A is very easily accepted by the skin, and can be used twice daily. This will help the building blocks of your skin, collagen and elastin and therefore help the ‘Tightening’ of the skin. I use the term loosely. It will take prolonged use and the results are minimal. If you're pore obsessed, you still wouldn't be happy.
Micro needling treatments in a salon is another option, as it will stimulate Collagen production.
Your best bet is to do a combination of all of the above and hope for the best.
First 2 things you should do before buying any new skin care or booking in for a treatment
1. If you have a magnifying mirror in your house.
Throw.it.out (unless you need it for hair plucking). No one should examine their skin this closely and you will just find things you don't like.
2. Accept that they are a part of your lovely face and try to appreciate all your pores do for you.
Gráinne Callaghan from Westmeath is the owner of Bright Skin, an online education and consultation service. Brightskin.ie offers Online Skin Assessments €40 for clients and educational Webinars for people working with skin and skincare. She is a former secondary school teacher with a passion for educating people about skin and skincare and providing fact and science led information to her clients. No BS, no marketing, no sales targets, just honest advice.
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