Wondering if you can actually change your pore size? You can’t, Dr. Paul Nassif, board-certified plastic surgeon and facial reconstructor, tells Elite Daily. Pore size is a function of genetics, so you cannot permanently shrink large pores. However, he says, “You can change the appearance pore size” by reducing congestion, treating and preventing blackheads, and generally evening out your skin tone and firming the appearance of your skin. When researching the best serums for large pores, Dr. Nassif suggests looking for products that contain AHAs and BHAs like lactic acid, glycolic acid, and salicylic acid. “These acids will help exfoliate dead skin cells, removing any excess buildup from the skin,” he explains. Retinol is another ingredient that the expert says increases skin cell turnover, which can help reduce the appearance of large pores. Finally, even if you’re prone to oily skin and blackheads, you should always look for hydrating ingredients in your serum, like hyaluronic acid, because Dr. Nassif says pores can appear larger if your skin doesn’t. is not sufficiently hydrated.
In addition to using a pore-tightening serum, you can also use a pore-filling primer to reduce the appearance of large pores. Ingredients often found in these primers, such as dimethicone silicone, “help reflect light and blur the appearance of pores,” says the doctor. While serums will provide long term benefits, these primers offer more immediate results.
Keep scrolling to buy six great serums that can help make your little ones (temporarily) smaller; then, to really keep congestion at bay, pick one of the best pore cleansers.
1. Doctor’s Pick: Best Drugstore Serum for Large Pores
Dr. Nassif emphasizes Neutrogena Stubborn Blackhead Serum as a great affordable choice for large pores. “This contains salicylic and glycolic acids to exfoliate and clean clogged pores,” he explains. When it comes to deep cleansing and pore unclogging abilities, it’s hard to beat the proven BHA. salicylic acid, which penetrates deep into the skin to remove dead skin and oil that’s stuck in your pores and make them look bigger, which is why it’s often the first treatment for blackheads. Salicylic acid is also great effective when combined with AHAs like glycolic acidbecause AHAs resurface on the skin (i.e. slough off dead skin cells), so salicylic acid has an easier time doing its job.
It is an oil-free serum, which is often preferred by people prone to very oily skin. However, you don’t have to avoid oils at all costs, says Dr. Nassif. “good oils with the right active ingredients can help improve the appearance of pores,” says the expert.
2. The Best Gentle Serum for Large Pores
The sweetness of Caudalie, elegantly formulated Vinopure Serum targets clogged pores and promotes a more even skin tone, thanks to naturally occurring salicylic acid and niacinamide, a form of vitamin B3 that has all kinds of skin benefits, including potential to make your pores appear smaller over time. The serum also contains antioxidant-rich grape seed polyphenols, the brand’s signature ingredient, which work to protect and nourish your skin for the long term. Due to its antioxidant properties, it is a great choice for everyday use under sunscreen.
3. Best Retinol Serum for Large Pores
Retinol is useful for many reasons. By effectively promoting skin cell turnover and removing dead skin cells, it is an ideal ingredient for unclogging large and congested pores, which is why it is often recommended for patients prone to acne and acne. black dots. La Roche-Posay Pure Retinol Face Serum is a simple, straightforward, oil-free serum that balances the many benefits of retinol with more gentle, nourishing ingredients, like the brand’s soothing niacinamide, hyaluronic acid, glycerin, and thermal spring water. Like any retinol serum, this one should be applied to clean, dry skin at night.
When using any of the active ingredients on this list, including AHAs or retinol, be sure to never forget sunscreen, as these exfoliants can make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
4. Best K-Beauty Serum for Large Pores
For a K-beauty pick, try this multi-faceted serum from cult Korean brand COSRX. Their AHA/BHA Vitamin C Booster Serum is an affordable blend of vitamin C-rich fruit extracts like kiwi and dragon fruit, hydrating glycerin, soothing niacinamide, BHA betaine salicylate (from sugar beets), and AHA glycolic acid. Together, these ingredients work to promote a brighter, more even complexion and help reduce the appearance of congested and visible pores.
5. Best serum with SPF for large pores
If you have congested pores and oily skin, layering multiple products can sometimes feel too overwhelming. A hydrating serum that also contains SPF is therefore a good way to protect your skin and treat other problems at the same time. Garnier SkinActive Green Labs Canna-B Pore Perfecting Cream-Serum has an SPF of 30 (the minimum sun protection suggested by the American Academy of Dermatology) and contains niacinamide, glycerin and hemp seed oil to keep your skin healthy and your pores clear. It’s fragrance-free and has a creamy, light texture, so it provides just the right amount of nourishment for oily skin.
6. Best 2 in 1 serum and toner
Absorb excess oil, clean clogged pores and refresh your skin with this two-in-one Bliss toner and serum. It’s made with salicylic acid, niacinamide, and witch hazel, which cover the pore-clearing benefits, while tea tree oil helps prevent breakouts, and zinc PCA reduces redness, sebum and shine. It has an ultra-lightweight texture so layers great under makeup and other skin care products.
Dr. Paul NassifBoard certified plastic surgeon and facial reconstructor