Enlarged Pores

The problems with pores are always on the forefront of discussions about beauty and skin care. Unlike acne or wrinkles, everyone has pores. Whether or not they become a problem is determined by a mixture of genetics, skin type, and daily skin care habits.

Even though you can’t change your genetics, once you understand why pores enlarge, you can choose good products and practices to keep yours as small and clean as possible.

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This article will examine several important questions about pores and pore care, including:

What are pores?

Pores are openings on the skin that are the exit point for two main types of glands:

  • Sebaceous glands — Secrete oil (also known as sebum) to keep the skin lubricated and waterproof.
  • Sweat glands — Produce sweat to help regulate body temperature.

The most pores per square inch anywhere on the body are found on the face, especially the nose and forehead area. Most breakouts occur in these areas because of the high density of oil-producing glands found there. Many people want to reduce their pore size. Unfortunately, this isn’t really possible because the size of your pores is largely determined by genetics.

Perricone MD‘s Skin Clear treatment is described in this video:

However, it is possible to reduce the appearance of pores and control external factors that enlarge them. Through a combination of conscientious daily skin care and carefully chosen products, you can keep pores clean and keep them looking as small as your genetics will allow.

To understand how to treat your pores, you need to know why some pores start looking bigger in the first place.

Why do pores enlarge?

Since pore size is determined by genetics, some people naturally have small pore and others large pores. However, there are factors that influence whether your pores stay the size they started or whether they enlarge. People with oily skin tend to have larger pores. Their more active sebaceous glands need a bigger opening through which to release oil. Also, many people’s pores get bigger during puberty when the body starts naturally producing more oil.

Other factors that enlarge and draw attention to pores include:

  • Blackheads – The buildup of dead skin cells, dirt, and oil, that both clogs and stretches the pores. When the clog is exposed to air, it oxidizes, becoming darker in color and more obvious.
  • Blemishes — Each acne blemish stretches the pore, and many cause scarring that can draw more attention to the pore.
  • Sun damage — This causes a flare up of cells that surround the pores; the thickening of these cells makes a rim-like appearance and makes pores look bigger.
  • Loss of elasticity — As skin ages, the collagen and elastin that give it is shape weaken. This can cause the wall of the pore to lose its structure, partially collapsing and enlarging.

Alpha Lipoic Acid: A Solution?

Dr. Perricone suggests his Advanced Face Firming Activator for those looking to refine pores, because it is formulated with high levels of Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA). There’s even a Perricone discount for it.

ALA is a very powerful anti-aging, antioxidant compound with the ability to help minimize enlarged pores. The Advanced Face Firming Activator works to reduce puffiness and refines skin texture while simultaneously decreasing wrinkles and pore size.

Gentle exfoliants like glycolic and salicylic acids are also great for sweeping away dead skin cells before they can contribute to blackheads and blemishes. These ingredients can be found in Dr. Perricone’s Skin Clear Cleanser and Skin Clear Toner.

At home tips to keep pores clean

Adult acne treatment starts with preventing pores from enlarging in the first place.

There are some things you can do every day to help maintain clean, firm pores:

  1. Wash your face with a gentle cleanser or facial wash, but not too frequently. Even if you have oily skin, resist the urge to wash excessively. This can strip too much natural oil from the skin and cause it to produce more oil to compensate. Washing the face cleans the pores of dirt and oil, which prevents clogging, darkening, and stretching.
  2. Wear sunscreen. This reduce the risk of sun damage, which not only makes pores look bigger, but also causes skin damage like wrinkles, uneven pigmentation, and sagging.
  3. Use non-comedogenic makeup and sunscreens and be sure off every night before you go to bed. Leaving these products on for extended periods contributes to clogged pores.
  4. Don’t touch your face, especially if it’s to pick at blemishes. This just creates and spreads more oil while simultaneously irritating the blemishes and preventing them from healing properly.
  5. Choose skin care products with active ingredients to exfoliate, firm, and refine both skin texture.

Even though your genetics aren’t under your control, good skin care habits and a routine targeted to refine pores can effectively keep pores at their smallest natural size and minimize their appearance.

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55 Comments • Please comment below


  1. Please help. I am 28 have had acne on and off. I am allergic to sunscreen. I used it recently and I feel like it has ruined my skin. I now have bumps all over my face and enlarged pores on my cheeks and forehead. I am also starting to get lines inbetween my brows to go with the enlarged pores. I just want to feel confident about my skin and I feel horrible. Please help me. I am vegan and eat very healthy. Lately I have been eating very nonimmflamatory foods but nothing seems to be helping. :( Very frustrated and desperate for a solution

  2. I work for a nonprofit institution and have to make public appearances often. I am also the single parent of 3 children – a teenager, preteen and a preschooler. I’ve always had large pores but as I near 40, the pores, lines and early wrinkles are making their mark. I want to be a good example for my older daughters but it is often a struggle to care for myself both financially and time wise in this way given the challenges of a very busy job and home life. If I could test Perricone products, this would be a step back to finding time for myself!

  3. would like to try. Thank you.

  4. I don’t know where to start. I am 64, fair skined and having all kinds of problems. Adult acne, enlarged pores and am allergic to sunscreen. I need help but can’t afford alot of the things that might help me.


  6. Next month I will turn 59. I have never had blackheads on my nose as I found today along with very enlarged pores! So upset, this “the older you get the better” is not working for me. Blackheads now to go along with my wrinkles. Plus I do not wear makeup, just cream on my face.

  7. I am also desperate for a method of healing enlarged pores!

  8. My most important point is to wash face starting with really warm water not burning, apply your product, especially one that feels minty so you can feel it working on you skin and rinse with cold water. you would feel the cold water tightening up your pores and pat dry with clean towel. To keep your skin hydrated or moisture clean just apply your sunscreen or moisturizer. I love to use Garnier Nutrioniste Skin Renew

  9. Hi everyone, I’ve had acne ever since i hit puberty until now, 23 yrs old because of my large pores and very oily face. I don’t know if this would help everyone and if everybody knows about this but what helps me is I wash my face in the morning when I wake with Biore, pore unclogging scrub. Wet my face with really warm water to open my pores and apply the scrub and just rinse with cold water to close up my pores. I do that before I go to bed at night as well. It helps me a whole bunch, now I always get compliments on how my face looks so clean n clear, even though I still produce a lot of oil on my forehead, nose, and chin throughout the day. I still get pimples but very rarely..only usually right before my pms.. I hope this helps at least some of you =)

  10. i have very large pores they seem to be more noticeable since i turned 4o i have been spending a lot of money on face wash, exfoliates i even bought the Cindy Crawford line meaningful beauty witch was expensive and did not seem to help at all!! so please can your product help me??

  11. my skin has always been oily and prone to blackheads, but it wasn’t until the past few years that I noticed the GIGANTIC pores on my lower cheeks. My pores seem to be taking up more space than the surrounding skin, and when I smile it makes my skin looks realy wrinkled, as my skin folds along the network of holes that has developed. i am only 34! I look young from far away and in pictures, but my skin texture up close makes me look a lot older than i am. I know I won’t ever have small pores but i am becoming desperate to have them at least minimized. i would be so grateful if I could be a tester.

  12. hello i was so depressed about my enlarged pores on my face and nose,i’ve tried everything,im so hopeless to find a solution to my problem ,while searching on the internet i saw this perricone,hope this will help me with this product,sincerely vicki

  13. OMG!!! My skin became oily and started breaking out when I was around 11 years of age. I had acne breakouts right up into my thirties—and tried “everything” short of accutane, as it wasn’t really that well known about back then. As a result of such extremely “oily” skin I developed “large” pores—especially on my nose and cheeks. I absolutely “HATE” them and feel like they are probably one of the first things people notice about my face. Oh yeah, and at 59 my face still gets greasy and oily looking in the dog-days of summer. HELP!!! PLEASE, let me be a tester! Robin L. K

  14. I am 35 years old and I have enlarged pores on the sides of my nose and forehead. I have a regular regimen of cleaning and maintaining my face but the pores seem to get bigger and bigger. I have tried other products but have not had results.It is very embarrassing Please help!

  15. Thanks for the info! I’m 46 and have VERY oily skin. I’ve noticed the pores on my nose, chin, and forehead are getting noticably larger. Would love to try something that would help. I’ve tried so many products and haven’t found anything that has helped so far!!

  16. I’m 18 almost 19 and I noticed my pores got very big over the summer from being in the sun so much and from unusual break outs of pimples (which I never got in high school) now my skin look so old and ratty. I need to fix this and maybe tighten my skin a bit. Please tell me dose this really work and how much does it cost ? I really think I need it

  17. pores

  18. My pores are so embarrassing. Even my boyfriend and twin brother make fun of me for having such huge pores! Please help me

  19. I am a 20 year old of two. I have not been able to get my pores to reduce in size. I did not have large pores until resonantly. It is really bad on my noise/ cheek bone area. Something has to work.

  20. hello, my name is laura, i am 40 yrs old, i have enlarged pores on my nose and cheek area, around my mouthalso, i have tried everythting that said pore on it,i still use the pore exstactor,i thinking that i am just the one with large pores and possibly some scarring,could there be something out there that works with promt results?i bought a book about perricone years ago and i always wanted to try his products.so it would be a honor to become a perricone tester.

  21. I’m 31, and for the last few years, I’ve started to see signs of aging — specifically fine lines and enlarged pores — and yet I still have chronic blackheads and whiteheads. Isn’t there some unwritten law that I shouldn’t have to suffer from blemishes AND wrinkles at the same time? I’d LOVE to be a tester, because if I find anything that can help my weird skin, I’ll sing its praises everywhere I go!

  22. I am 41 years old and have always had a problem with enlarged pores. A few years ago I had a microdermabrasion treatment to treat the enlarged pores,which left my face severely burned. I’m sure this worsened the appearance of the pores on my skin. I would appreciate it if I could try your products.


  23. I am a 33 yr old mother of 1. Since having my son 2 1/2 years ago I’ve noticed that my pores on my cheeks close to my nose as well as pores on my nose and forehead are visibly larger. I know that this runs in my family and I’m hoping I can do something about it before they get bigger….

  24. I have tried over 30 companies, and none works on my sensitive, fair,oily,blackhead prone, 50 year old skin like NV Perricone.The only reason I have ever tried any other co. in the past 7 years of my skin care experimenting , is because I haven’t been and am not working, and I usually cannot afford my beloved N. V. Perricone products.

  25. About me, I have large pores on face and nose and forehead. Whenever I look at into the mirror, I fed up. My skin type is not oily, Look dry but have pores. Help me! What should I do?

  26. hi,im an 18year-old girl who has been suffering from enlarged pores for the past 6 months.Idont think the problem is genetic as nobody in my family has as large pores as me.I think it was caused due to too many products on my face.This problem has taken a serious toll on my confidence and self-esteem.I avoid going out in public as much as possible and my pores have plagued my every waking moment.I would really like to try your products.Are they suitable for younger skin as well?

  27. I definately could use this, among some of the other products on the site. Please consider me for the product testing.


  28. Hi,
    to everybody who has large pores is a constant battle,i have tried so many product the result always dissapointing,i´m 31 and i´m depressing result to those larges pores in my nose,please could you considerate me as a suitable candidate to test those product.
    many thanks

  29. [...] pores more often as they appear larger than the average sized pores. Many hope to shrink their enlarged pores, but unfortunately, the concept that pores can be permanently diminished in size is a [...]

  30. I’ve always had nice skin and looked 10+ years younger. As I get older (recently I turned 61) the pores on my face have been getting larger. Last month I started to take a medication with a side effect of acne. I am at square one in dealing with this for the first time in my life and I’m searching for a natural, healthy way to help this condition. I’m interested in being a tester and thank you very much for considering me.


  32. I have all the skin problems: extreme oiliness, pimples, sometimes cysts but what usually upsets me more is the large pores. It adds insult to injury, so I would absolutely love to test this product. Thanks!

  33. I need a miracle!! Taking care of patients daily and pt/teaching good health care, I really need to be a good role model. My large facial pores
    are impeding my confidence. Please, please help me by allowing me to be a Perricone tester.

  34. I have always had alot of problems with my skin. My skin is very sensitive and most products cause redness and irritation. I have wrinkles, large pores, sagging and dark circles under my eyes. I would like to try Dr. Perricone’s products. I think they might be just what I have been looking for.


  35. I would love the chance to test Dr. Perricone’s products. I’ve just recently heard about his products and am very excited about them. I have been looking for a natural wrinkle treatment for quite some time now but have not found one that I felt would really work or that I would trust to put on my skin. I have tried products in the past that have reddened and irritated my sensitive skin and have had no positive results. I also have large pores and dark circles under my eyes. I am really looking for a natural product that works and that is reasonably priced. I think that I might finally find that in Dr. Perricone’s products.


  36. I would love to test this out. My pores are very big, and have blackheads on my nose. As if it wasn’t bad enough that I have a big nose, I get these wonderful additions to it!! Would be nice to try this out, and see if it helped!!

  37. i am excited to try this product! i have been noticing the pores on my nose getting a little bigger over the past few years. i want to nip this process in the bud.

  38. [...] tested this myself but word is that it’s supposed to be really helpful if you have enlarged pores from blackheads, blemishes, [...]

  39. I would love to be a tester of your products. I have large pores, visible red veins on my chin, probably rosacea (just read about it in your information), not to mention sagging skin around my eyes and wrinkles. I have never worn much makeup due to very oily skin and acne.

    Please help!

  40. I would love to test your products. I have very large pores on my nose and my nose is extremely oily. Help!!!

  41. I have some large pores that consistantly get clogged no matter what I do. I would love to test this product.

  42. I have tried EVERYTHING to get rid of the blackheads on my nose and cheeks. I would love to try these products to see if they would help.

  43. Please please pick me for a tester. I know I would be a good candidate and would love to have skin like Dana the Perricone Glow.

  44. I have enlarged pores on my nose. I also have these like bubbles around my eyes just above the cheekbone Im not sure if it is milia or not. My under eyes are dark and not tight.

  45. I have enlarged pores and would love to test a product that will make them look smaller

  46. My mother has very large pores on her cheeks, nose and chin. I have been dreading aging because I don’t want to have her pores. It has already started on my cheeks and now the rest seem to be coming. I have tried products to minimize my pores, but I really have not seen any clear results.
    I am hoping that the Perricone products will be as wonderful as his books. I have been following the Perricone Promise diet for 2 weeks now, but I haven’t been able to get the face products.
    I would love to have the opportunity to have my face look as good as my body is feeling.

  47. I have enlarged pores on my nose, cheeks and forehead. Sometimes I look in the mirror and think…is this all people see when they look at me? I can’t seem to shrink them and it doesn’t help that my skin is oily too! Thank you for this opportunity!

  48. I just turned 50, and I have struggled with huge pores for the last 15 years or so. I have tried a lot of products with no visible results. I know nothing will “shrink” pores again but hopefully something will minimize the look of them. I would be thrilled to participate in this

  49. My nose is, of course, the worst for my large pores. I constantly feel like they are the most noticeable thing on my face….to test a product that will diminish them will be a dream come true for me. Thank you so much for this opportunity.

  50. Thank You so much , I thought I was doomed to endure life with an oily face plagued with large pores. It is good to know that there is hope, and help. I see what I have been doing wrong for sooooo long.