Our pores are responsible for filtering toxins from our skin. Although numerous products on the market claim to minimize pores, they serve a valuable role in our integumentary systems (the system that governs our hair, skin, and nails).

You might find yourself wondering how to shrink large pores. First, it’s important to note that pores can not be eliminated, erased, or eradicated. Aiming to rid yourself of pores can result in severe, lifelong skin damage. However, treating your pores diligently with the right products can minimize them to give a more airbrushed appearance. 

Pore size has been a hot topic in the skincare industry for decades. While no single product can eliminate your pores, a well-rounded approach to skincare can help minimize them once and for all! The first step to shrinking large pores is understanding what causes large pores. That being said, here’s everything you need to know about how to reduce pore size.

What Causes Large Pores?

Pore size varies from person to person, and so do their causes. Large pores can be caused by a variety of factors, both genetic and environmental. To minimize pores, you should first understand what’s causing them. 

Skin Aging

As you age, your skin loses elasticity as collagen production dwindles. When this happens, your pores can seem more noticeable since your skin begins to stretch. Pores also tend to increase in size from previous breakouts, sun damage, or excess sebum production.

If you’re looking for beauty secrets to reduce pore size, begin by regularly exfoliating, wearing sunscreen daily, and diligently moisturizing. Although our skin loses elasticity as we age, our pores can stay free and clear for the rest of our lives with the right products. In addition, make it a goal of your routine to restore your skin's firmness and elasticity. 

Sun Exposure

We all know that sun exposure has irreparable effects on the skin. If you’ve gone years without applying SPF, chances are your pores appear larger. Sun damage causes collagen and elastin (proteins that make up our skin’s connective tissue) to dissipate over time. When these proteins break down, it can cause the pores to widen in appearance.

Though most people avoid wearing sunscreen because they feel it settles into their pores, it’s quite the opposite. Sunscreen sits on the surface of your skin to form a protective barrier. Without it, your pores become vulnerable to sun damage. Dermaxsol is a daily facial moisturizer with SPF30 that you can incorporate into your AM skincare routine to protect your skin.

Oil Production

If your skin looks slick or shiny mid-day, you might have overactive oil glands that produce excess oil, resulting in larger pores. This is especially true if your skin is prone to acne. When the skin produces too much oil, it can fester within the pore, causing it to block and stretch or erupt in a pimple or congestion.

Oily skin causes oil glands to be incredibly active that can stretch out the pore size. If you have oily skin, be sure to look up the eight common causes of excessive sebum production. In addition, tackling the root cause of your oily skin can help reduce pore size.

Changes in Hormones

If you’ve recently started a new birth control, new medication, or endured a recent injury or trauma, changes in hormone levels are known to cause an increase in pore size. Hormones can increase sebum production, which, as previously mentioned, can increase the size of the pores.

Hormonal changes are fairly easy to notice. Beyond your skin and pore size, you may gain or lose weight, feel tired, suffer from gastrointestinal issues, or have mood swings. If you’re worried about hormones and how they’re impacting your skin and pores, be sure to reach out to your doctor or an endocrinologist.


Our genes influence everything: our hair color, eye color, the thickness of our brows, and our pore size. If you observe that everyone in your family also has larger pores, it's because of genetics. It’s hard to fight or fix genetics, but applying the right products for your skin problems can make all the difference.

Those with naturally larger pores tend to have oilier skin. Here's a guide on how to prevent oily skin, which can help shrink pore size. While you can’t alter genetics, you can unclog pores with the proper cleansing and exfoliating products!

Skin Types

The type of skin we have plays a major role in pore size. If you have combination skin, you may notice your pores are larger in your t-zone, where you naturally produce more oil. If you have oily skin, your pores are generally larger. If you have dry skin, you might have smaller pores all over your face.

Determining your skin type and building a proper skincare routine are key to treating larger pores successfully. Once you’ve determined the potential causes of large pores and your skin type, you can start a skincare routine and implement solutions to reduce pore size.

How To Shrink Large Pores

Now that we’ve established what causes large pores, let’s also see how to minimize them. Here are our top pore-minimizing tips.


Regular chemical exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells, dirt, and debris that may be lingering within your pore lining. Establishing an exfoliation routine should always be the first step you take when aiming to reduce the appearance of large pores. Without it, there are limited ways to reduce the appearance of pore size.

If you’re wondering how to reduce pores on the face, investing in a quality exfoliant with glycolic, lactic, and salicylic acids can help loosen debris from pores and dissolve dead skin cells. When you don’t exfoliate efficiently or regularly, dead skin and other impurities accumulate within the pore lining, resulting in acne and large clogged pores. So when it comes to reducing pore size, chemical exfoliation should be your first step. Solvaderm Daily Skin System AM is a day-to-day cleansing regimen that protects the skin from damage and keeps it healthy.

Use Effective Skin Treatments

Investing in the right treatments can drastically improve your pore size. When it comes to skincare products, clarifying products can help lift dirt and debris from your skin that would otherwise settle into your pores. The Blackheads + Enlarged Pores Set from Solvaderm removes impurities and minimizes the appearance of large pores with ingredients like seaweed, witch hazel, and lavender extract.

For other effective skin treatments, invest in a non-comedogenic sunscreen that won’t clog pores. Perfecting your makeup routine with a pore-minimizing primer can also reduce the look of large pores. Lastly, using a clay mask once a week can extract excess dirt and provide a deep clean. These pore-minimizing skin treatments can help degunk your pores to shrink their appearance.

Use Retinoids

Retinoids work by speeding up cellular turnover to promote new growth. They can unclog pores rapidly, ultimately shrinking pore size. Retinol is a type of retinoid that tightens pores and reduces sebum production. Regular use of retinol can help keep your pores free and clear of pore-clogging impurities, giving them a fine appearance.

Investing in a quality retinoid, like Suvoderm, can dramatically reduce pore size. Additionally, retinoids reduce breakouts, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and wrinkles. This all-star ingredient has a place in everyone’s routine! When it comes to how to reduce pore size, retinoids can do the job. Their ability to decongest the skin, speed up cellular turnover, and promote collagen production can help minimize pores.

Try Natural Scrubs

While chemical exfoliants can dissolve dead skin cells, sometimes a natural scrub is necessary to remove dead skin cells that may have accumulated in the epidermis. A natural scrub containing tomato and sugar can peel away dead skin. From time to time, a gentle scrub can be beneficial in sloughing off any dead surface skin cells your other products may have missed. Avoid using scrubs on active acne, as this can worsen inflammation and spread bacteria.

Be careful not to use scrubs too often to avoid the risk of over-exfoliation. Aim to scrub twice monthly if you’re struggling with rough texture due to large pores. In addition, opt for a chemical exfoliant that penetrates within the pore lining to shrink pore size.

Go For Ice Cubes

We’ve all heard that heat ‘opens’ pores, which isn’t true. Heat loosens debris within the pore lining but does not ‘open’ the pore itself. Ice cubes on the other hand, or ice water facials, can minimize the appearance of pores by constricting blood vessels. It’s interesting to know that ice is one of the cheapest, most natural, and highly effective pore-minimizing techniques.

Rubbing an ice cube on your face daily can help tighten up your pores to prevent them from getting clogged. It’s also an effective way to prep your skin for your AM skincare routine. However, be careful to only ice your face once daily for 30 seconds to one minute to avoid an ice burn.

Apple Cider Vinegar & Baking Soda

Apple cider vinegar and baking soda have many benefits in wellness and beauty spaces. From aiding digestion to whitening teeth, it seems like there isn’t much these two all-star ingredients can’t do. Their abilities don’t end there: ACV and baking soda can help unclog and exfoliate pores to shrink pore size!

Apple cider vinegar is naturally exfoliating, antibacterial, and antifungal. It can clear acne-causing bacteria from developing into active breakouts that stretch the pore lining. Baking soda can serve as a good physical exfoliant, spot treatment, and face mask since it can decongest the skin and reduce clogged pores. But remember not to use these two ingredients together, as they can create a chemical gas if combined.

In-office Treatments

If you feel you’ve already exhausted all your options, it might be time to consider in-office, medical-grade treatments. Laser therapies, micro-needling, and chemical peels can all stimulate collagen synthesis that helps shrink large pores. They’re incredibly effective but can also be time-consuming and expensive. These treatmets are often used as a last resort. However, when starting your skincare journey with an in-office treatment, you may see results sooner.

Consult your dermatologist or a medical professional about in-office treatments to reduce large pores. A consultation is also recommended to ensure you’re going about the right course of treatment.


Question #1 – Why are my pores so large?

Large pores can be caused by different factors, including but not limited to genetics, oil production, aging, sun exposure, and hormonal changes. 

Question #2 – Can you fix an enlarged pore?

Large pores can be minimized with the help of regular exfoliation, retinoids, sun protection, and possible in-office medical treatments. However, when a pore has ruptured, medical treatment may be necessary.

Question #3 – How to shrink pores instantly?

Investing in a quality skincare routine, specifically in chemical exfoliants and a retinoid can help to visibly shrink your pores in no time. Also, visit your dermatologist to figure out the best course of treatment. Results can be instant or require several sessions of medical treatment.

Bottom Line

Pores serve an essential role in keeping our skin intact and healthy, so it’s important we treat them the same way! Investing in a proper skincare routine and the right clarifying products can help reduce large pores. Here at Solvaderm, we believe in nourishing every part of the body with dermatological solutions that are simple and effective. Skincare is self-care. By showing your pores love, you’re also showing love to yourself.

Melissa Feldman

Melissa Feldman

Melissa Feldman lives in Toronto, Canada and works as an independent research writer. She has undergraduate degrees in both Teaching and Psychology, and a Master’s degree in Immigration. Melissa is skilled at writing compelling articles and producing academic, marketing, and creative content. She writes about a range of lifestyle topics, including health, fitness, beauty and nutrition. She has more than two decades of experience reviewing and editing publications intended for both public and professional audiences.

Written by Melissa Feldman

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