Wanting smaller pores has been an obsession of ours since we first analyzed our skin in a mirror as a tween. While science has informed us that we technically cannot eradicate pores, we can do our best in making them as small as possible. As openings on a facial surface, we all know pores can get clogged by those sneaky little evils such as dirt, sweat, and too much oil build-up. This “clogging” causes pores to enlarge (ugh) which can then lead to an even worse problem, acne. We’ve gathered the tips you’ll need to keep your face as clean as ever – before you apply your makeup.
Astringent Face Washes
“Astringent” is one of those words that sounds serious on the label of an innocent face wash, but they are great for those with oily skin issues, especially. These can be drying though, so don’t use an astringent every day, just a few times a week. An astringent is like a tougher version of a regular face wash, and it helps your facial tissues to shrink. The results of astringents can actually be organically found in lemons and pomegranates (which explains that tingly sensation in some of the products you may use).
Use a Toner
Since toners are simply another step in your skin care routine, they are often forgotten – but are actually a valid step in shrinking your pores. Toners are applied in between washing your face and applying moisturizer and help refine your pores after they’ve just been released of all the bad stuff. Look for old school ingredients like witch hazel and rose water.
Scrub and Sunscreen!
Scrubbing is a Godsend in ridding dead cells and letting your skin breathe as it should! Rub just a tad more aggressive when exfoliating in circular motion, but of course not too hard (that’s what the beads are for) and rinse with cold water. For products, you should look for salicylic acid, but you can also use a pantry item like sugar to exfoliate (but take it easy when you scrub as you’ll be using the real thing. It won’t be softened by company for your use). You should be using an SPF 15 moisturizer anyway, but this is especially imperative on the days your cells are newly exposed.
Facials and Masks
Facials not only feel amazing, they are the all-around gung-ho trick to bringing your skin back to life, from dehydration to stripping excess oil. You can take the luxurious route and make an appointment at a spa (where you’ll also get an oh-so-necessary massage), or use an at-home one curated to your needs. There are so many to choose from, from clay, honey-based, to the addition of fruit enzymes, and with a minimum requirement of 30 minutes seeping onto your skin. There are also tons of safe, DIY treatments you can create and replicate from trustworthy beauty experts and publications.
For some dermatologists, they view makeup as a major culprit to pore enlargement since it does sit on top of our skin, but in this case, we know what to do! With face powder specifically, use a brush, like a kabuki, rather than a sponge applicator to spread around the makeup. When using a sponge, the makeup is more likely to just lay on top of your skin, where with a brush it’s more evenly separated and is also a plus for better, natural-looking coverage. And of course, always wash your makeup off each night!
Image via Istock