It's Official! Porexia or obsession with facial pore size is on the rise. Worrying over pore size starts at the age of fifteen. 45% of women in USA suffer from Porexia. If you have spent hours in front of the magnifying glass studying your facial pores, you are in. Even before the obsession turns into an actual form of image dysmorphia, consider natural D-I-Y home remedies or professional treatment options to tackle large pores on the face. Indeed, large pores can be made to appear smaller. Your tryst with primer, luminizer and foundation to blur the large pores on the face may soon be a thing of the past.
Don't hate pores
Don't hate pores. They have a job to do. Pores keep your skin and body healthy. Each pore contains a sebaceous gland which produces the body's natural oil called sebum. It is released through the pores. This oil, sebum is a mixture of fats, proteins, cholesterol and inorganic salts. It doesn't remain inside. Sebum travels up the follicle and exits through the pores on the skin. The dead skin cells within the follicle are also carried outside. Sebum is essential to keep the skin (body's largest organ) elastic, moisturized and function well. If not, the skin would be dry, cracked and unhealthy.
Also, pores on the surface of the skin are actually openings of hair follicles. The pores allow sweat to pass, keeping the body cool. Many people think that pores are only on the face. But for the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet, pores are present all over the body. Pores are more noticeable on the face, like the forehead and the nose because the sebaceous gland on this area is bigger or rather larger.
Now about large pores
An average adult has five million pores on the body. Close to 20,000 are located on the face alone. The next question is about the size of the pore. Typically, the pore diameter is only 50 microns.
Anyone raring to determine skin pore size can try this simple exercise. Pick up a mirror to view your face. If you can see little holes in your face from about 1 foot away from the mirror, then you have large pores.
Genetics play a major role in determining pore size. There are other contributory factors that make pores appear enlarged due to pore congestion. These are factors that affect its natural physiology. Oil, dirt and dead skin cells that collect on the face tend to form a blockage within the pores. This makes the pores appear larger.
Too tired after a long day's work and wanting to hit the bed, most women fail to remove make-up that has been on the skin for hours. Obviously this is poor skin care routine. Neglecting skin care routines result in accumulation of oil, dead skin cells and dirt to clog the pores. This in turn stretches the skin and makes pores appear larger. Additionally, make up that is not washed off can settle in and around the pores causing pores to be highlighted and appear enlarged.
It is common for menstruating women to have to deal with real skin problems that pop up around that time of the month. The fluctuating hormones make the oil gland over work. The oily complexion is inescapable. More the sebum, larger the pores. Pores blow up.
Excessive drinking is yet another contributing factor. Addiction to alcohol consumption affects the liver and leads to developing larger blood vessels and oil glands. This means larger pores in the chin and nose area.
Pollution too affects pore size. Pollution causes uneven skin tone. The piercing UV rays leads to thicker epidermis. The deteriorating environment causes the skin to lose its elasticity. Pollution accelerates aging. As the skin ages, there is a dip in collagen levels. Pores lose their firmness and stretch wide. As a result the pores are clogged with sebum, dirt and dead skin cells. It is a trap. Pores are clogged and enlarged.
Accept – Can Minimize can't shrink pore size
You cannot physically shrink large pores or size of the pores. Pores don't have muscles. Pores can't open or close. You can't physically change the structure of the large pores. But it is indeed possible to minimize the appearance of large pores.
Consider these options - D-I-Y home remedies, topical and oral therapies, laser, radio frequency and ultrasound. Deciding is easier provided you know what causes large pores. There are also preventive measures to avoid worsening of large pores.
D-I-Y remedies to minimize large pores
ICE cubes: The ice machine in your freezer is the first choice to minimize large pores. Ice cubes on large pores shrink due to its skin tightening effects. It also helps stimulate blood circulation thereby promoting healthier skin.
When you notice improvement, you can gradually reduce applying ice cubes on the pores. If you are consistent, you will notice the large pores shrinking within a few days. Even on a busy day don't skip but simply wash face with ice cold water. This helps keep away dirt from the pores and your face clean.
For the ancient Egyptians Aloe Vera was plant of immortality and to Native Americans ‘The wand of heaven'. Growing an Aloe Vera plant at home is helpful for emergencies like cuts, wounds, burns and also large Pores.
Try using the natural form. If not, choose a packaged option. Aloe vera gel contains 99% water and the remaining 1% contains essential vitamins like Vitamin A, C, E, B12, amino acids and fatty acids. The zinc in aloe vera gel acts as an astringent to tighten pores. The gel cleanses and nourishes the skin and removes oil and dirt from the clogged pores.
In 2014 America faced egg-white shortage. Because health conscious Americans were giving up the yolk. Things have changed now. The American Heart Association listed egg as a 'healthy food for under $1'. The dietary guidelines recommend one egg per day.
Include in your diet one egg every day and keep aside one more for shrinking large pores. Make use of egg white separators to set aside egg white.
The astringent properties in egg white help shrink the pores by tightening the skin. Rich in albumin, egg whites help tone the skin and also promote wrinkle free skin.
Apple cider vinegar
Repeat this twice daily for six weeks and you can see a remarkable change. Apple cider vinegar is a natural toner for the skin. This simple D-I-Y tightens skin, shrinks large pores and reduces inflammation, if any due to acne. No more dryness or oiliness.
DGA or dietary guidelines for Americans released in January 2016 recommends Americans to consume 1 serving of yogurt per day. Americans prefer yogurt for breakfast and prefer pairing yogurt with a fruit. Reserve few yogurt packs to make a face mask to minimize large pores.
Yogurt can make the skin dry. Hence, it is essential to hydrate the skin. Use a moisturizer on the face after a while. Yogurt acts as a cleanser and dissolves impurities (dead skin cells and debris) in pores. The lactic acid in yogurt tightens pores.
Using clay for spa and beauty treatments isn't new and has existed even in the prehistoric era. So, it is a proven method. Sourcing for clay, you'll find two types - kaolin and bentonite. Both have same features. Namely, absorption of excess sebum and drawing dirt out of clogged pores. Clay for clay masks can be sourced from traditional skin care brands and natural skin care brands.
A clay mask on the face once or twice a week promises good results. Variety of minerals in clay helps with natural detoxification. A key property of clay is absorption. Clay masks when applied on the face absorb the water and oil from the skin. You can feel a pleasant tightening sensation which makes the large pores appear much smaller.
Dead Sea salt
The salt taken from the Dead Sea is Dead Sea Salt. It contains more than 20 elements. The dried minerals and salt have therapeutic benefits. The concentration of salt is very high. It is 10 times higher than ordinary sea salt. Dead Sea salt has excellent skin benefits. It purifies the pores by removing the dead cells and dirt that get accumulated. While sourcing for Dead Sea Salt, check if its 100% pure, organic, unprocessed and straight from the Dead Sea and not from Dead Sea Mud. They aren't the same and the salt from the mud is inferior compared to salt from the Dead Sea.
The antimicrobial properties of Dead Sea Salt work well in improving the condition of the skin. The calcium in salt cleans pores while removing dirt and other toxins. Also, it helps shrink and lessen the pores, diminish the appearance of lines and wrinkles on the face.
Baking soda and water
If familiar with varied uses of baking soda, you may have multiple boxes stored in the kitchen, in the bathroom and on the laundry shelf. Add one more and reserve for shrinking large pores. It just takes 30 seconds for this D-I-Y remedy for large pores.
Continue for two weeks and do this preferably just before going to bed. The dirt, clogged oil, bacteria clamped inside is shunted out. The skin looks smooth and fresh. Large pores shrink and the skin looks smooth, shiny and fresh.
Dermatologists are seeing considerable increase in the number of people enquiring about treatment options to make large pores smaller. Observation reveals that many have large pores clogged with blackheads and whiteheads. This confirms that large pores treatment is multi factorial in nature. The associative factors such as increased sebum production and cutaneous aging require to be addressed. Treatment aims to decrease sebum production, rejuvenate skin, remove hair and or decrease the follicular size.
Topical Therapies (Retinoids, Retinols, Chemical peels)
Retinoids or retinol, these are forms of Vitamin A. It can be either a prescription retinoid cream or OTC retinol. Both work the same way, increase cell turnover, unclog the pores and make them appear smaller.
Recommended usage for effective result is alternate days and several nights a week. These work throughout the night. As a precautionary measure to avoid redness and irritation, start with lowest concentration.
Retinoids work by preventing the build-up of dead skin cells and oil inside the hair follicle. If the debris builds-up; it leads to dilation of the pores which makes them appear larger. By using Retinoid, the debris within the pores is cleaned out. The pore size reduces. Also, retinoid increases cell turnover and strengthens the tissue which brings in a marked difference in pore size.
Retinol contains retinoic acid, the active form of vitamin A. It has the characteristic feature of binding with the receptors on the skin cells thus transforming the skin youthful and healthier. There is an increase in skin's collagen production, reduction in oil production which makes skin smoother, reduces breakouts and blackheads and also tightens pores.
The cause of large pores could be genetic, sun damage, blackheads and improper exfoliation. Chemical peels address all these causes that make the pores appear enlarged. By using chemical peels, the skin tone is improved, looks healthier and diminishes the appearance of large pores.
There are different chemical peels available. It is only the proportion of solutions used for chemical peels that differs. The solutions used are phenol, trichloracetic acid (TCA) or alpha hydroxyl acid (AHA). Depending on the needs, the formula can be adjusted. The principle is the same – increase cell turnover, exfoliate old and damaged skin so that the body is ready to regenerate fresh new layer of skin that is smoother, younger and healthier.
Chemical peels use chemicals in certain ratio to get rid of old skin or the outer layers of the epidermis with an acidic solution so that a new layer of skin from underneath which is newer, brighter and softer emerges. After this, the skin can appear a little raw. That is normal. The peel actually stimulates collagen production and cell renewal, leaving the skin looking healthier, with improved texture and younger.
But chemical peeling isn't a one-off procedure. For desired results, a series of 6-10 weekly treatments is recommended. Complying with the do's and don'ts of an aesthetic doctor/dermatologist ensures safe outcome.
Yet another topical treatment option for large pores is the new botanically derived or plant derived copper chlorophyll complex sodium salt (CHLcu) and tetra-hydro-jasmonic acid (LR2412). Clinical trials are limited and ongoing but the initial positive results are good.
Sometimes hormonal intervention is aimed at preventing androgens from stimulating the sebaceous gland activity to reduce sebum formation and also minimize the pore visibility. Dermatologists prescribe anti-androgens for their direct effect on sebum production. The choice include oral contraceptives, spironoloactone and crypoterone acetate.
Other treatment options
Lasers, Radio frequency, and Ultrasound devices, all these are aimed at rejuvenation of the skin. The modality is the same. Pulses of light are directed on to the face (half of an inch over the skin) which is absorbed by tiny blood vessels in the skin. This stimulates collagen production which in turn improves skin tone. The end result is a healthy, young and vibrant complexion. About five to six session each lasting at least 30 minutes is recommended. On the same day the results are seen. But a gradual improvement is noticeable over a period of six months when new collagen production continues.
Prevent worsening of large pores
Don't worsen the problem. It is a combination, internal and external that can prevent worsening of large pores.