It's important to know that -- besides at-home treatments and different medical procedures -- there are a number of skin-care products on the market. Anti-aging creams often contain retinol, a form of vitamin A, and users typically put these products on overnight. Retinol can tighten the skin up, reducing the appearance of pores. In addition to retinol, look for products with vitamin C and alpha or beta hydroxy acids [source: Crawford].
Exfoliating creams are widely available, and they all help to reduce the size of large pores. Exfoliating creams work in a similar way to microdermabrasion or chemical peel procedures. By wearing away the outer layers of skin, they reveal undamaged lower layers and stimulate new cell growth. However, exfoliating creams are less abrasive, and you can use them at home without the help of a doctor.
Because blackheads and whiteheads can enlarge pores, products designed to treat acne often help keep your complexion uniform and pores healthy-looking. After taking a warm shower, which should help dilate pores, apply a blackhead strip or similar product to the area you'd like to treat. Follow the product's directions to safely remove blackheads without the risk of scarring or infection. There are also more mechanical means of removing blackheads with vacuum-like devices, which allow a person to completely remove a single blackhead without pain or risk of scarring.
Although it may be frustrating to learn that it's not possible to tighten up enlarged pores permanently, you won't have to constantly suffer. These treatments can keep your skin looking vibrant and youthful. If you make the right choices and carefully test different approaches, it's possible to maintain a healthy tone. As always, speak to a dermatologist if you're uncertain about a particular product or procedure. Follow the links on the following page to learn more about the different methods for minimizing pores.
- Cho S.B., J.H. Lee, M.J. Choi, K.Y. Lee and S.H. Oh. "Efficacy of the fractional photothermolysis system with dynamic operating mode on acne scars and enlarged facial pores." Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Biology Research Institute. Jan. 2009. (Aug. 13, 2009)http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19076205
- DocShop. "Large Pores: How to Shrink the Appearance of Large Pores." (Aug. 12, 2009) http://www.docshop.com/education/dermatology/skin-flaws/large-pores/
- Kecskes, Alex. "Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture." Pacific College of Oriental Medicine. (Aug. 12, 2009) http://www.pacificcollege.edu/acupuncture-massage-news/articles/450.html
- Northington, Marian. "Skin Resurfacing With Fractional Photothermolysis." University of Alabama at Birmingham. 2007. (Aug. 12, 2009) http://www.health.uab.edu/16225/
- Sorgen, Carol. "Grooming Essentials for Women: Skin and Hair Care Products." WebMD. July 21, 2009. (Aug. 12, 2009) http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/features/grooming-essentials-women-skin-hair-care-products
- University of Michigan. "Treatment Options." (Aug. 12, 2009)http://www.med.umich.edu/derm/patient/cdlctreatment.shtml
- Web MD. "Spring Cleaning: How to Pamper Your Skin." Oct. 19, 2007. (Aug. 12, 2009)http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/acne/features/how-pamper-your-skin?
- Web MD. "Your Skin: Are You Doing Too Much or Too Little?" (Aug. 12, 2009)http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/features/your-skin-are-you-doing-too-much-or-too-little