If you look in the mirror and notice your skin texture doesn’t look quite as even and smooth as you’d like, large pores could be the culprit. Pores are the holes in your skin that sweat is released from.I Everyone has them, but a buildup of oils and impurities can lead to clogged pores, which can cause enlarged pores.II One of the most popular consumer questions is “how to shrink pores”—but you can’t actually change the size of your pores. That said, the right pore minimizer products and skincare routine can help reduce the appearance of large pores. Below, we share our top tips on how to minimize pores for a more even-looking complexion.
Give Your Pores a Deep Cleaning
As we mentioned, clogged pores and an oily face can cause pores to appear larger. To prevent this, cleanse your complexion twice a day with products that won’t irritate your skin.II Start your routine off right with Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser, which is formulated with Amazonian white clay and aloe vera, and is suitable for all skin types (including sensitive skin). The daily cleanser gently removes oil, dirt, and toxins while helping to minimize pores. It also exfoliates (another key component of treating clogged, enlarged pores) and softens with its non-stripping foaming formula. Use clean fingertips to massage the cleanser onto damp skin before rinsing thoroughly with lukewarm water.
Kiehl's Expert Tip: To help get the most out of your cleanser, you can use a microfiber towel to massage the formula onto your skin in circular motions. This tool will act as another mechanical exfoliant to help remove buildup.
Turn To Pore-Minimizing Toner
To cleanse your skin further, follow up with a toner, like Rare Earth Pore Refining Tonic, which contains Amazonian white clay and allantoin. The pore-minimizing toner is specifically formulated to reduce the appearance of enlarged pores and eliminate shine, leaving you with a balanced and healthy-looking complexion. Shake well before saturating a cotton pad with the formula. Then, lightly pat the pad over your face to apply—no need to rinse.
Use a Pore-Minimizing Serum
You may be familiar with vitamin C and its ability to help reduce the appearance of wrinkles and brighten a dull complexion. What you may not know is this popular skincare ingredient can also work to minimize the look of pores. Specifically, Powerful-Strength Vitamin C Serum, which contains 10.5 percent L-ascorbic acid and 2 percent ascorbyl glucoside plus hyaluronic acid, helps visibly diminish fine lines, wrinkles, and pores for smoother-looking skin. Use clean fingertips to apply it after cleansing.
Follow With a Moisturizer For Oily Skin
Once your complexion is clean, it’s important to restore your skin’s hydration with a moisturizer. This is true even if you have oily skin that’s prone to clogged, large pores. The trick is to use a face moisturizer that is lightweight and non-greasy, such as our Ultra Facial Oil-Free Gel Cream. This moisturizer is non-comedogenic so its specifically formulated to not clog your pores. And as a bonus, this cream also provides an instant cooling effect that is super refreshing to the skin.
Use a Pore-Cleansing Mask
By now, you know that clogged pores can become enlarged, which is why using a deep cleansing face mask to help clean and detoxify your pores is another noteworthy way to minimize their appearance. Rare Earth Deep Pore Cleansing Mask contains Amazonian white clay and aloe vera. The mask helps draw out dirt and toxins that can cause clogged pores while intensely purifying your skin. A few times a week or as needed, apply the mask to damp skin after cleansing. Leave it on for 10 minutes, until the formula is dry, then remove the mask using a warm, wet towel.
Kiehl's Expert Tip: If your pores are enlarged in one area and not another (large pores are common on the nose, for example), consider multi-masking. You can apply your pore minimizer mask where needed, and use a different mask to address a different concern in another spot. Perhaps the pores in your T-zone look enlarged while your cheeks and forehead are dry. In that case, use a nourishing gel face mask on the rest of your skin.
We touched on this earlier when talking about our daily exfoliating face wash, but regular exfoliation may make large pores less noticeable.II To slough away buildup, use Epidermal Re-Texturizing Microdermabrasion three times per week. It’s formulated with micronized shells and willow herb to help reduce the appearance of facial lines and pores over time. The formula also helps your skin absorb topical skin treatments better to maximize their efficacy. This means your skin will be able to get the full benefits of the other products in your routine, including the vitamin C serum and pore-minimizing lotion we mentioned earlier.
Don’t Skip SPF
Proper sun protection is beneficial for your skin for a multitude of reasons, including minimizing the appearance of large pores. This is because sun-damaged skin loses firmness, which can increase the appearance of pores.II Every morning, smooth on a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher—even if it’s cloudy or rainy.
It can be easy to go overboard when it comes to cleansing and exfoliating your skin, but scrubbing your face won’t help your enlarged pores. In fact, picking at, squeezing, or digging into your pores can irritate your skin and cause your pores to look more noticeable.II With each step of your skincare routine, make sure to be gentle to avoid irritating your skin.
Next up: If our mention of Amazonian white clay stood out, you might be curious about the benefits of this noteworthy ingredient. Check out our article, Discover the Benefits of Amazonian White Clay.
I.“What kids should know about the layers of skin.” American Academy of Dermatology. 2020. https://www.aad.org/public/parents-kids/healthy-habits/parents/kids/skin-layers.
II.“What can treat large facial pores.” American Academy of Dermatology. 2020. https://www.aad.org/public/everyday-care/skin-care-secrets/face/treat-large-pores.