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4 ways to minimise your pores

Pores are a structural part of your skin that cannot, under any circumstance, disappear. They can get wider and deeper if they’re clogged continuously, or if you squeeze them all the time.

Although your base pore size is genetically determined, you can minimise their appearance and effectively shrink them back to their normal, pre-stretched state with the right treatments.

Reach for the acids

Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs) are the holy grail of ingredients when it comes to penetrating and “cleaning out” your pores.

“AHAs and BHAs dissolve the connections between your cells and the surface of your skin to essentially ‘unclog’ pores,” says dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, M.D., director of cosmetic and clinical research at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.

Basically, the stuff in your pores is a stage-five clinger, and acids are an intervention.

While both acids exfoliate on a cellular level, AHAs work on the surface layer of your skin to brighten and smooth it, while BHAs penetrate deeper to remove dead skin cells clogged in pores, making them especially excellent for oily, acne-prone skin.


photo credit: Pinterest

Commit to a retinoid

The vitamin A-based topical smooth wrinkles and brighten dark spots, but it also works to stop acne and shrink pores. Retinol’s magic is the result of its ability to increase your skin’s collagen production, while simultaneously decreasing its oil production, which leads to smoother skin, fewer breakouts and blackheads, and tighter pores.

If you’ve got ultra-dry, sensitive, or rosacea-prone skin, though, you’ll want to mitigate irritation and build up your skin’s tolerance by using retinol only once a week for one week, twice a week for two weeks, three times a week for three weeks, and then, only if you’ve had zero irritation thus far, apply it every other night indefinitely.

Wear sunscreen

“The sun breaks down your skin’s collagen, which is responsible for keeping your face firm and elasticised, so you’re left with larger pores and stretchier skin after repeat exposure,” says Rachel Nazarian, M.D., a dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology in New York.

Slather on a minimum of SPF 30 every single morning.

Get lasered

“Lasers are a fantastic way to address pore problems,” says Dr Nazarian.

She prefers the less-invasive Laser Genesis over the Fraxel laser, which zaps microscopic holes into the skin to resurface deep acne scars and uneven pores.

Laser Genesis is much milder—it stimulates the skin’s deepest layers to smooth and plump your complexion with minimal pain, so you get the results of retinol, sunscreen, and acids all at once, without any of the hassles.

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