How to Deal With Enlarged Pores On The Face
Contrary to popular belief, enlarged pores are not only a problem for teenagers; adults suffer from them just as often. Doctors were asked why pores become large and whether they can narrow them.
Usually, the pores on the face are so microscopic that they can only be seen with a magnifying glass. But sometimes, they become visible to the naked eye. This is due to many reasons, including the skin’s natural ageing. In addition to aesthetic discomfort, enlarged pores can provoke skin diseases like acne. In this case, avoiding a visit to a dermatologist is okay.
What are enlarged pores?
Enlarged pores are micro-holes on the skin’s surface, primarily oval, which are visible to the naked eye. They become visible on the face at 250 microns or 0.25 mm. In most cases, enlarged pores are a biological marker of oily skin. They can cause aesthetic discomfort, but at the same time, it is the pores that protect the skin from drying out.
From the point of view of medicine, what is sometimes called a hair follicle with the mouths of the sebaceous glands? The latter produces sebum (sebum), which plays a vital role in maintaining skin health, but can become a problem if too much or too little. Excess sebum, dead skin cells, and dirt clog pore, causing them to stretch and become more visible.
The pore size is determined by three main factors:
- Hormonal background
Most people with large pores are born this way, having inherited the appropriate skin type. Pores also become more visible as skin loses collagen and firmness as we age. During hormonal changes, overproduction of sebum can cause pores to appear larger and skin to be oilier.
Typically enlarged pores are benign: they do not lead to pigmentation and do not pose a serious medical problem. But suppose you notice a significant increase in the size, distribution and density of pores and signs of skin infections or acne appear on your face. In that case, you should immediately contact a dermatologist.
Causes of enlarged pores
Although genetics is considered the determining factor for the appearance of enlarged pores, other aspects can affect their size. These include, for example, periodic cleansing of the skin, excessive exposure to the sun, and harmful habits such as sleeping with makeup or constantly touching your face with dirty hands. Here’s what else affects the size of the pores on the face.
Excessive secretion of sebum, especially in owners of oily or combination skin.
Enlargement of hair follicles: Thicker hair follicles have a larger follicular opening that forms skin pores. Additionally, they expand to allow the release of natural fat and appear enlarged.
Ageing and sun exposure: These factors can adversely affect the production of collagen and elastin, decreasing skin firmness and elasticity, and the pores will look like small craters.
Hormonal changes stimulate the overactivity of the sebaceous glands and the production of excessive amounts of sebum, which leads to enlarged pores.
Men have larger pores than women: This is due to the increased activity of the sebaceous glands. Women’s size is influenced by additional hormonal factors such as the menstrual cycle or pregnancy.
Dermatological conditions and nutritional deficiencies: In rare cases, chronic radiodermatitis and vitamin deficiencies can lead to skin deterioration and enlarged pores.
Treatment for porous skin
Various treatments and procedures can help make enlarged pores less noticeable. Some of them can be carried out at home, others – only under the supervision of a cosmetologist or doctor.
Many skin care products help reduce the appearance of large pores. These are various masks, facial cleansers and scrubs based on clay, kaolin, minerals and retinol. They all work by absorbing sebum and constricting the excretory ducts of the sebaceous glands. But the effect of home treatments is usually temporary. In addition, there is always a risk of injuring the skin with home remedies.
“When patients engage in amateur activities, this leads to the fact that the skin dries out and dehydrates. As a result, unwanted pigmentation may occur,” warns dermatologist Elena Vasilyeva.
This is a method of applying a chemical exfoliating solution to the skin. It is most effective to carry out the procedure in the salon, but there are funds for home use. Chemical peels range from light to profound. The most common ingredients in peels are:
- BHA (beta hydroxy acids);
- AHA (alpha hydroxy acids);
- trichloroacetic acid.
Laser treatment is a targeted method that removes the top layers of the skin. There are ablative and non-ablative resurfacing. The difference between them is the depth of penetration. The first affects the upper layers (up to 1 mm), and the second affects the deeper levels of the dermis. The procedure is performed under local anaesthesia, and after grinding, a rehabilitation period follows. During this time, swelling, redness, or itching may occur.
Phototherapy and ultrasound
For treating enlarged pores at home and in the clinic, physiotherapeutic devices are used – microcurrents and LED lamps. They improve microcirculation and moderately increase the amount of elastic and collagen fibres, says dermatologist Marina Kartasheva. Phototherapy, also used in treating rosacea and acne, works by selectively absorbing light of a certain length by different skin structures. The course of procedures allows us to achieve the best effect.
Needle RF-lifting and focused ultrasound are used to forcefully increase the percentage of collagen fibres in the skin, which improves its elasticity and, as a result, narrows the pores.
There is an opinion that hot water opens pores, and cold water closes them. But in reality, the pores are always open and can be clogged. For example, steaming and hot towels, which are used by cosmetologists, first of all, help to soften and remove plugs from sebum (comedonal rods) formed in the pores. At home, contrast washes have a short-term effect – after a few minutes, the skin returns to its average temperature, as does the size of the pores. On the advice of a dermatologist, it is best to wash your face with warm water, without contrast. Too hot water, on the contrary, can provoke the production of sebaceous glands.
Daily care for porous skin
If the pores are enlarged due to heredity, then changing your genetic code will not work. This is also true for enlarged pores with age. When it comes to a systemic failure, complex treatment will help to correct the situation. However, avoiding blockage of pores and their further stretching is possible. To do this, take into account the following advice from dermatologists.
Choose the right makeup: First, look for the words “non-comedogenic” on the labels of products. This means that the product will not clog pores. For daily care, products with salicylic acid and retinol are also suitable.
Keep your face clean: Make it a rule to cleanse your skin every day. To do this, you can use light tonics or micellar water. Never go to bed with makeup on; if possible, try not to touch your face with dirty hands.
Use UV protection: Too much sun exposure can make your skin less elastic, making your pores look more prominent. Wear SPF 30+ sunscreen every time you go outside.
Perform spot treatment. If the pores on the nose, cheeks and forehead are enlarged, try a spot treatment such as a clay mask. Apply it thinly on clean skin, leave for a few minutes and rinse with water. Clay can quickly and gently remove excess oil from clogged pores, making the skin smoother.
Eat right: Foods high in fat and unhealthy oils can cause inflammation. Instead of fast food and sweets, snack on fruits and vegetables. During an exacerbation, should exclude gluten, dairy products, coffee, and alcohol should exclude gluten, dairy products, coffee and alcohol.