My pores suddenly got larger- Can I shrink them?

Skin care plays a vital role in maintaining a healthy complexion. One common concern among beauty enthusiasts is the sudden enlargement of pores. It can be frustrating to notice this change, but rest assured, there are steps you can take to minimize the appearance of large pores. In this article, we will delve into the reasons behind this occurrence, explore techniques to shrink pores, and provide tips for overall pore health.

Understanding Pores and Their Function

Pores, the tiny openings on the surface of our skin, serve an important purpose. They house hair follicles and sebaceous glands, which produce sebum, a natural oil that moisturizes and protects our skin. However, various factors can influence pore size, leading to their sudden enlargement.

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Definition of Pores

Pores are small openings on the skin’s surface, allowing the passage of sweat and sebum. They are most prominent on the face, especially in the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin), where sebaceous glands are concentrated.

Role of Pores in Skin Health

Pores play a crucial role in maintaining skin health. They allow the release of sweat, which helps regulate body temperature. Additionally, pores facilitate the secretion of sebum, which moisturizes and protects the skin.

Factors Contributing to Pore Size

The size of our pores can be influenced by various factors, including:

  • Genetics: Some individuals are genetically predisposed to have larger pores.
  • Oily Skin: Excess sebum production can stretch the pores, making them appear larger.
  • Age: As we age, our skin loses elasticity, leading to the enlargement of pores.
  • Environmental Factors: Exposure to pollutants and UV radiation can affect pore size.

Why Are My Pores So Big All of a Sudden?

Pores suddenly getting larger can be attributed to several reasons. Let’s explore the common causes and triggers:

1. Excessive Sebum Production

One of the primary culprits behind enlarged pores is excessive sebum production. When your sebaceous glands produce more sebum than necessary, it can mix with dead skin cells and other impurities, clogging the pores. This leads to their expansion and a more noticeable appearance.

2. Dead Skin Cell Buildup

The accumulation of dead skin cells on the skin’s surface can also contribute to enlarged pores. When these dead skin cells mix with sebum, they form a plug that obstructs the pore opening. As a result, the pore stretches and becomes more visible.

3. Loss of Collagen and Elastin

As we age, the skin naturally loses collagen and elastin, two proteins responsible for its elasticity and firmness. This loss of structural support can cause the skin to sag and stretch, making pores appear larger.

Impact of Oily Skin and Sebum Production

Oily skin tends to have more noticeable pores due to the increased production of sebum. This excess oil can mix with dead skin cells and other debris, leading to clogged pores and enlarged appearances.

Can Enlarged Pores Go Back to Normal?

The good news is that with proper care and consistent skincare, enlarged pores can improve in appearance. While it may not be possible to permanently shrink pores to their smallest size, you can certainly minimize their appearance and achieve smoother-looking skin. By adopting a comprehensive approach that combines skincare, professional treatments, and lifestyle habits, you can effectively manage pore size.

Possibility of Pore Size Reduction

Enlarged pores can be minimized through effective skincare routines, proper lifestyle habits, and professional treatments. Although complete restoration to their original size may not be possible, noticeable improvements can be achieved.

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The Role of Collagen and Elastin in Pore Elasticity

The elasticity of our skin, influenced by collagen and elastin fibers, impacts pore size. As we age, the production of these fibers decreases, leading to a loss of elasticity and larger-looking pores. However, utilizing products that support collagen production and promote skin elasticity can help minimize the appearance of enlarged pores.

Tips and Techniques for Minimizing Pore Appearance

To reduce the appearance of enlarged pores:

  • Keep skin clean:
    Use gentle cleansers to remove dirt, makeup, and excess oil.
  • Exfoliate regularly:
    Dead skin cell buildup can exacerbate pore visibility; exfoliating can help remove these cells.
  • Use products with pore-minimizing ingredients:
    Look for skincare products containing salicylic acid, niacinamide, retinol, or alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs).
  • Consider professional treatments:
    Dermatologists offer various procedures like microdermabrasion, chemical peels, and laser treatments to reduce pore size.

Effective Strategies for Shrinking Pores

A consistent skincare routine tailored to pore care can make a significant difference in reducing their visibility. Here are some steps to consider:

Daily Skincare Routine for Pore Care

A daily skincare routine should include:

  • Cleanse:
    Start by cleansing your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser specifically formulated for your skin type. Look for products that are non-comedogenic and help remove excess oil and impurities without stripping the skin.
  • Tone:
    After cleansing, use a toner to balance the skin’s pH levels and tighten the pores. Look for toners containing ingredients like witch hazel or niacinamide, which can help refine pore size.
  • Serums:
    Incorporate pore-minimizing serums into your routine, targeting specific concerns like excess oil or clogged pores.
  • Moisturize:
    Hydration is key to maintaining healthy skin and minimizing pore visibility. Choose a lightweight, oil-free moisturizer that provides hydration without clogging the pores.
  • Masks:
    Weekly application of pore-clearing masks can help draw out impurities and tighten the skin.
  • Protect:
    Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher every day, even when it’s cloudy or during the winter months. Sun damage can worsen pore appearance and contribute to premature aging.

Products and Ingredients to Look For

When selecting skincare products for pore care, consider the following ingredients:


Cleansers that contain salicylic acid or glycolic acid can help remove excess oil and unclog pores.

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Transform your skincare routine with Murad Acne Clarifying Cleanser – Salicylic Acid Treatment Face Wash. This powerful cleanser is specifically designed to target pore concerns and acne-prone skin. Infused with 1.5% salicylic acid, a potent ingredient renowned for its ability to penetrate deep into the pores, this face wash effectively clears away impurities, excess oil, and dead skin cells that can contribute to enlarged pores. The gentle formula also contains green tea extract, which provides antioxidant protection and soothes the skin, reducing redness and inflammation.

The Murad Acne Clarifying Cleanser lathers into a rich foam, ensuring a thorough cleanse without stripping the skin of its natural moisture. Regular use of this face wash helps prevent breakouts, control oil production, and minimize the appearance of pores, promoting a clearer and more refined complexion.

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Treat your pores to the Mario Badescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser, a luxurious skincare solution infused with the power of glycolic acid. This foaming cleanser is formulated with 3% glycolic acid to effectively exfoliate the skin, removing impurities, excess oil, and dead skin cells that can contribute to enlarged pores. It helps to refine skin texture, minimize the appearance of pores, and promote a smoother and more radiant complexion.

The gentle yet effective formula also contains herbal extracts of chamomile, yarrow, and sage, which provide soothing and calming benefits to the skin. The foaming action creates a rich lather that deeply cleanses without stripping the skin of its natural moisture.

Incorporate the Mario Badescu Glycolic Foaming Cleanser into your daily skincare routine to experience the transformative effects of glycolic acid. Achieve a fresh and revitalized complexion with visibly improved pore size and overall skin clarity. Treat your skin to this luxurious foaming cleanser and enjoy the benefits of refined and radiant-looking skin.


Toners with ingredients like witch hazel or tea tree oil can assist in reducing oiliness and tightening the appearance of pores.

THAYERS Alcohol-Free, Hydrating Cucumber Witch Hazel Facial Toner with Aloe Vera Formula, Vegan, Dermatologist Tested and Recommended, 12 Oz THAYERS Alcohol-Free, Hydrating Cucumber Witch Hazel Facial Toner with Aloe Vera... @ Amazon Amazon Prime

Refresh and tone your skin with the Thayers Alcohol-Free Witch Hazel Facial Toner. This cult-favorite toner combines the natural astringent properties of witch hazel with soothing aloe vera to create a gentle and effective formula. Witch hazel helps tighten the pores, control excess oil production, and reduce inflammation, making it an ideal ingredient for those with enlarged pores. Aloe vera provides hydration and nourishment, leaving the skin feeling refreshed and balanced.


Look for serums containing niacinamide, retinol, or hyaluronic acid to support pore health and minimize their appearance.

  • Niacinamide:
    This multitasking ingredient helps regulate sebum production, improves skin barrier function, and reduces pore size. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that can soothe redness and irritation.
  • Retinoids:
    Derived from vitamin A, retinoids are powerful ingredients that stimulate collagen production and promote skin cell turnover. Regular use of retinoids can help improve pore appearance and reduce their size over time.
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Elevate your skincare routine with the Niacinamide Serum by PCA SKIN. This premium serum harnesses the power of niacinamide, also known as vitamin B3, to target a wide range of skin concerns. Niacinamide helps regulate sebum production, minimize pore size, and improve overall skin texture. It also provides antioxidant benefits, helping to protect the skin from environmental damage.

Formulated with a potent blend of ingredients, this serum works to balance uneven skin tone, reduce redness, and promote a more radiant complexion. It is lightweight, absorbs quickly, and is suitable for all skin types.

Sunday Riley A+ High-Dose Anti Aging Retinol Serum Sunday Riley A+ High-Dose Anti Aging Retinol Serum @ Amazon

Experience the power of retinoids with Sunday Riley A+ High-Dose Retinoid Serum. This luxury serum is formulated with a high concentration of retinoids to target multiple signs of aging and skin concerns. It combines 5% retinoid ester blend, liposomal-encapsulated retinol, and blue-green algae extract to provide a potent yet gentle formula.

The serum works to stimulate collagen production, improve skin elasticity, and reduce the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and enlarged pores. It also helps to even out skin tone, smooth texture, and enhance overall radiance.


Masks with clay or charcoal are excellent for deep cleansing and absorbing excess oil, contributing to smaller-looking pores.  Look for masks with ingredients like kaolin or bentonite clay and use them once or twice a week to deep cleanse your skin.

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Reveal a radiant complexion with the Boscia Luminizing Black Charcoal Mask. This premium charcoal mask is formulated with activated black charcoal and a blend of natural ingredients to detoxify and clarify the skin. It features a peel-off formula that helps to lift away impurities, excess oil, and dead skin cells, leaving your pores visibly minimized.

The Luminizing Black Charcoal Mask also contains calcium montmorillonite clay, known for its purifying properties. It helps absorb excess sebum and unclog pores, promoting a smoother and clearer complexion. Infused with antioxidants and botanical extracts like rosemary leaf extract and eucalyptus leaf oil, this mask also provides soothing and refreshing benefits to the skin.

Professional Treatments and Procedures

If you desire more significant improvements, consider the following professional treatments:

  • Microdermabrasion:
    A handheld device to exfoliate the outer layer of the skin, removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores. It can help improve pore size and texture.This procedure uses
  • Chemical Peels:
    Chemical peels involve the application of a chemical solution to the skin, which exfoliates the outer layer. This process stimulates collagen production and can improve pore appearance.
  • Laser Treatments:
    Laser resurfacing treatments use focused beams of light to remove damaged skin and stimulate collagen production. They can help minimize pore size and improve overall skin texture.
  • Microneedling:
    Microneedling involves the use of tiny needles to create controlled micro-injuries on the skin’s surface. This process stimulates collagen production and can help reduce pore size.

Lifestyle Habits for Pore Health

Aside from skincare routines and treatments, adopting certain lifestyle habits can contribute to overall pore health.

The Impact of Diet and Hydration

A healthy diet plays a significant role in skin health, including pore appearance. Opt for a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and antioxidants, as they provide essential nutrients for skin rejuvenation. Additionally, staying hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water each day helps maintain skin elasticity and flushes out toxins.

Sun Protection and Its Influence on Pore Size

Protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays is crucial for maintaining pore health. Sun damage can worsen pore appearance and lead to collagen breakdown, making pores more visible. Apply sunscreen daily and seek shade during peak sun hours to minimize sun damage. For example, EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen Broad-Spectrum SPF 46 is an excellent choice for individuals with concerns about their pores.

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Here’s why:

  1. Non-comedogenic:
    This sunscreen is non-comedogenic, meaning it won’t clog your pores. Clogged pores can lead to breakouts and the appearance of larger pores. By using a non-comedogenic sunscreen like EltaMD UV Clear, you can protect your skin from the sun without worrying about it exacerbating pore issues.
  2. Lightweight formula:
    The lightweight formula of EltaMD UV Clear ensures that it won’t feel heavy or greasy on the skin. Heavy sunscreens can weigh down the skin and make the pores appear more pronounced. With its lightweight texture, this sunscreen won’t add any extra burden to your pores, allowing them to appear more refined.
  3. Niacinamide content:
    EltaMD UV Clear contains niacinamide, a beneficial ingredient for pore size reduction. Niacinamide helps regulate sebum production, which can contribute to pore congestion and enlargement. By controlling excess oil, niacinamide helps to minimize the appearance of pores and promote a smoother complexion.
  4. Broad-spectrum protection:
    This sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays. UV radiation can damage the collagen and elastin in the skin, leading to a loss of skin elasticity and pore enlargement. By shielding your skin from harmful UV rays, EltaMD UV Clear helps prevent further damage and maintain the health of your pores.

Proper Makeup Techniques for Minimizing Pores

While makeup can help camouflage enlarged pores, it’s essential to choose products and techniques that minimize their appearance. Here are some tips:

  • Use a primer:
    Apply a silicone-based primer before foundation to create a smooth surface and blur the appearance of pores.
  • Choose lightweight formulas:
    Opt for oil-free or non-comedogenic foundations and powders that won’t clog the pores.
  • Apply with a brush or sponge:
    Use a brush or makeup sponge to apply foundation and blend it into the skin, avoiding heavy application that can accentuate pores.
Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional Pro Balm Face Primer Pore Minimizer .75 Ounce Benefit Cosmetics POREfessional Pro Balm Face Primer Pore Minimizer .75 Ounce @ Amazon Amazon Prime

This primer is specifically designed to minimize the appearance of pores and create a smooth canvas for makeup application. Here’s why it’s a great choice for people with pore concerns:

  1. Silicone-based formula: The POREfessional Face Primer is a silicone-based primer, which creates a smooth and velvety texture on the skin. The silicone forms a pore-blurring barrier over the skin, helping to fill in and minimize the appearance of pores. It creates a soft-focus effect that blurs imperfections and gives the skin a smoother, more refined look.
  2. Pore-minimizing properties: This primer is specifically formulated to target pore concerns. It helps to visibly reduce the appearance of pores, creating a more even complexion. By creating a smooth base, it also allows for better makeup application, as foundation and other products can glide on seamlessly.
  3. Lightweight and oil-free: The POREfessional Face Primer has a lightweight and oil-free formula, making it suitable for all skin types, including those with oily or combination skin. It does not feel heavy or greasy on the skin, allowing your pores to breathe while still providing effective pore-blurring benefits.
  4. Long-lasting effect: This primer helps extend the wear of your makeup, ensuring that your pores stay minimized throughout the day. It helps to control excess oil and keeps your makeup in place for a longer period, reducing the need for touch-ups.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can makeup make pores appear larger?

While makeup doesn’t permanently enlarge pores, heavy or oily products can settle into the pores and make them more noticeable. Opt for lightweight, non-comedogenic makeup that won’t clog your pores.

Are there any natural remedies to shrink pores?

While natural remedies may not drastically shrink pores, certain ingredients like apple cider vinegar, green tea, and aloe vera can help improve overall skin health and minimize the appearance of pores.

Can stress affect pore size?

Stress can indirectly impact pore size by increasing sebum production and triggering acne breakouts. Managing stress through relaxation techniques and self-care practices can help maintain pore health.

Is it possible to permanently close pores?

No, it is not possible to permanently close pores as they are essential for the skin’s health and functioning. However, following a consistent skincare routine and adopting healthy lifestyle habits can minimize their appearance.

Can exfoliation help in reducing pore size?

Regular exfoliation can help remove dead skin cells, unclog pores, and improve the overall texture and appearance of the skin. Incorporate gentle exfoliants into your skincare routine to reap the benefits.

What is the ideal skincare routine for minimizing pores?

An ideal skincare routine for minimizing pores includes cleansing, toning, using pore-minimizing serums, and applying masks once or twice a week. Customize the routine based on your skin type and concerns.

Are there any medical procedures to permanently shrink pores?

While there are no procedures to permanently shrink pores, treatments like microdermabrasion, chemical peels, and laser therapies can significantly reduce their appearance. Consult a dermatologist to explore these options.

How long does it take to see results from pore-reducing products?

The time it takes to see results can vary depending on individual factors and the specific products used. Generally, consistent use for several weeks can yield noticeable improvements in pore appearance.

Are there any side effects of pore-minimizing treatments?

Some treatments may have temporary side effects such as redness, peeling, or sensitivity. It’s essential to follow post-treatment instructions and consult a dermatologist to ensure safety and minimize any potential risks.

How can I prevent clogged pores?

To prevent clogged pores, follow a diligent skincare routine, cleanse your face twice a day, exfoliate regularly, and avoid using heavy, pore-clogging products. Additionally, removing makeup before bed is crucial.

Bottom Line

While it may be disheartening to notice your pores suddenly getting larger, there are effective strategies to minimize their appearance and maintain pore health. By understanding the causes of enlarged pores, adopting a consistent skincare routine, considering professional treatments, and implementing lifestyle habits that support pore health, you can achieve a smoother, healthier-looking complexion. Embrace the journey of caring for your skin, and remember that patience and consistency are key in achieving your desired results.

FAQs (Unique Questions)

How can I prevent pores from getting clogged?

To prevent clogged pores, follow these tips:

  • Remove makeup before bed.
  • Cleanse your face twice a day.
  • Exfoliate regularly to remove dead skin cells.
  • Avoid heavy, pore-clogging products.

Can hormonal changes affect pore size?

Yes, hormonal changes can impact pore size. Fluctuating hormone levels can increase sebum production and lead to larger-looking pores.

Is it necessary to see a dermatologist for

pore concerns?

While it’s not always necessary, consulting a dermatologist can provide personalized advice and recommend suitable treatments for your specific pore concerns.

Are there any dietary changes that can help improve pore health?

A balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and antioxidants can promote healthy skin and contribute to minimizing pore appearance. Avoiding excessive consumption of processed foods and sugary drinks is also beneficial.

Can pore strips effectively reduce pore size?

Pore strips can temporarily remove blackheads and debris from the surface of the skin, making pores less visible. However, they do not permanently reduce pore size and should be used with caution to avoid skin irritation.

Jen Roberts Glowing Gorgeous

Jen Roberts

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About our Chief Editor

Jen Roberts, is a passionate beauty specialist and blogger with a deep love for skincare and wellness. More about me here.


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