How to Shrink Pores on Face [11 Skincare Secrets]

Pores. Why do we even have them? Even when you follow a strict skincare routine, your pores can be seen with the naked eye.

Next to fine lines, these are probably the most noticeable age-associated physical change in the skin.

If you have seen pictures of celebrities with beautifully flawless skin that seems to be perfect, this article will show you some of their secrets for getting bigger-looking pores down to near-invisible levels.

Keep reading to find out how to shrink the pores on your face without invasive treatments or corrective surgery.

how to shrink pores on face

What Are Pores?

Pores are natural openings in the skin that secretes sebum (skin oil), sweat, and other substances.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), pores sizes can vary based on many factors, including genetics, age, gender, hormones, environment, and diet.

But despite the varying sizes of pores, they are all open to dirt and bacteria, which can cause breakouts or other dermatological issues.

“If you have visibly large pores, it’s important to take steps that can help shrink them and keep them clean, because pores that aren’t properly cared for can lead to acne, clogged pores, and other skin problems,” says Dr. Debra Jaliman, a board-certified dermatologist.

How to Shrink Pores on Face

There are a variety of ways to shrink pores on your face and get them back to a healthy size. You can try exfoliating, using retinol-based creams, or by using clay masks that help to draw out impurities.

With these few easy tips, you’ll be able to keep your skin clear while reducing the amount of negative space in your pores.

1. Cleanse Your Face

how to get rid of eye bags

It is important to cleanse your face regularly with a gentle cleanser to eliminate the dirt, oil, and impurities that can clog your pores, preventing them from secreting sebum and leading to acne or blackheads.

Also, it is important to choose a cleanser that suits your skin type. For instance, if you have sensitive or oily skin, use a water-based cleanser. For normal skin, use an oil-based cleanser.

2. Moisturize Regularly

If you have large, visible pores on your face, you may want to think about using a moisturizer. Moisturizers work to keep skin hydrated and prevent dryness, which can lead to increased oil production and enlarged pores.

Not only will this help shrink pores on your face, but it will also improve your complexion as well as reduce redness or inflammation caused by acne breakouts or rosacea.

For clear pores, Dr. Melissa K. Levin recommends moisturizing twice a day: once in the morning and once before going to bed at night.

3. Exfoliate With a Sugar Scrub

Exfoliating your face is one of the best ways to help clear up your pores and keep them healthy. Although there are many ways to exfoliate, the most popular method is using a sugar scrub.

Exfoliation removes the old, dead skin cells and debris that have built upon the surface of your skin, which leaves new skin cells exposed. It can also help improve the appearance of your skin by making it smoother and reducing the appearance of fine lines.

SEE: Here Are The Best Tricks to a Squeaky Clean, Glowing Complexion

4. Apply a Clay Mask

how to shrink pores on face

Clay masks are effective for reducing the size of pores and removing impurities from the face. According to Dr. Jeremy Brauer M.D, clay is an excellent ingredient that has the ability to draw out impurities and tighten pores by removing excess oil and sebum.

In addition, clay masks are an all-natural way to hydrate the skin and regulate oil production. Hence, improving the look and feel of your skin by nourishing it from the inside out.

Mix 1 tablespoon of clay with water until it reaches a paste-like consistency and spread evenly over your face. After 10 minutes, rinse off with warm water and pat dry. For best results, you can apply a clay mask one or two times per week.

 5. Use a Retinoid Cream

“Another way to combat enlarged pores is through the use of a retinoid cream,” explains Dr. Shari Lipner, M.D. Retinoids are compounds found in vitamin A that have the ability to improve the appearance of pores.

Retinoid cream is a topical medication that works by reducing excess oil on the skin and increasing cell turnover, which means the cells in your pores will move up quicker, causing them to shrink.

It also has properties that help prevent breakouts, reduce wrinkles and improve the appearance of acne scars.

6. Try a Chemical Peel

A chemical peel is a medical treatment that uses a chemical solution to remove the top layers of skin through the application of an acid solution, usually, one containing glycolic acid, lactic acid, or both.

“This is an excellent treatment for people who have sun damage, acne scars, age spots, wrinkles, and many other issues with their skin,” says Dr. Joshua Zeichner, an Associate Professor of Dermatology in New York City.

Chemical peels can be done in-office or at home. The in-office procedure will work well if you only need light chemical peeling because it will require just one visit over the course of two weeks.

However, at-home chemical peels take longer and are a better option if you need deep chemical peeling because it requires about three or four visits over the course of six weeks. 

7. Wear Sunscreen

how to shrink pores on face

You may not realize it, but sunscreen is one of the most essential things you need in your everyday routine. It is a must-have, especially if you’re someone who spends more time in the sun.

Sunscreen works by blocking the UVB rays that create erythema (redness) and dryness in the skin, making your pores appear larger while also blocking UVA rays, which cause wrinkles and photoaging.

Not only does this keep your pores looking their best, but it also protects you from skin cancer, premature aging, and other health conditions.

SEE: Is Sunscreen Good For Dark Skin Tones?

8. Drink More Water

A great skin care tip is to drink more water. The more water you drink, the better your pores. Increasing your water intake can reduce oil production in your skin by signaling your glands to slow down their production of oil.

Besides decreasing oil production, water helps reduce dryness and itchiness that can come from skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis. It also helps to improve your skin’s appearance and gives you a natural glow by preventing wrinkles.

It’s important to drink at least 8 glasses a day to keep your skin healthy, reduce dark circles, and improve your mood.

9. Keep a Healthy Diet

healthy diet

You’ve probably heard the age-old saying, “you are what you eat.” This is as true as it has ever been for your skin. Your skin needs vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to stay fresh and maintain healthy pores.

When you eat foods that are high in these nutrients, they get circulated throughout your body to help flush out toxins and impurities that may enlarge your pores.

So, get rid of all junk foods and make sure that you are consuming enough healthy foods like nuts, fruits, vegetables, and fibers every day.

10. Exercise Regularly

Toxins can accumulate in your body from many sources, including stress. And, if you don’t have a healthy metabolism, they will get stored in your body and lead to a variety of different skin conditions.

It’s important to get a routine in place that will help flush these toxins from your body, and one way to do this is by exercising.

Exercise not only helps to clear away toxins in the body but also reduces stress levels, which in turn reduces oil production on the skin. More so, it will help open up your pores to release any dirt and impurities stuck in them.

11. Try Natural Remedies

Turmeric powder

Shrinking your pores is not an easy task. That is why you have to try out every method in the book until you find the perfect one.

Fortunately, there are a few ancient natural remedies that can help shrink pores on your face. Some of these remedies include:

Apple Cider Vinegar

Once you discover the benefits of apple cider vinegar, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. Apple cider vinegar is a natural skin toner with powerful antioxidant properties.

It can help shrink pores, minimize fine lines and wrinkles, lighten acne scars, and reduce excess oil production. It can also help improve skin tone, which will lead to a younger-looking complexion.

Here are some steps to follow when using apple cider vinegar to shrink your pores.

  • Mix one tbsp of apple cider vinegar with two tbsps of water in a small bowl or cup.
  • Apply a thin layer of the mixture on your face with a cotton ball or pad.
  • Leave the solution on your face for about 10 minutes before rinsing it off with warm water.
  • Apply a moisturizer to prevent an over-drying effect that can occur as a result.


Known for its bright yellow color and many health benefits, a turmeric face mask is a natural and effective way to make your skin look good by reducing the size of your pores.

Moreover, it has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that have been found to be an effective treatment for acne and people living with rosacea. After the treatment, you’ll have new, smoother, and healthier-looking skin.

Here are some steps on how to prepare a turmeric face mask:

  • Add 2 tbsps of turmeric powder to one tbsp of coconut oil or water.
  • Mix well until it forms a paste.
  • Apply the mixture directly onto your face.
  • Leave the mixture on your skin for 15 minutes.
  • Wash off and apply face cream.

Cucumber and Lemon

Cucumbers have astringent properties that help shrink pores, while lemon’s high levels of vitamin C are an excellent way to keep your skin looking fresh and healthy.

A combination of these two can help to clear and shrink your pores from the inside out, leaving you with smooth skin that is free of dead cells and impurities.

  • Take 2 tbsps of cucumber juice and 1 tbsp of lemon juice in a container.
  • Apply the mixture on your face with a cotton ball or pad.
  • Leave for 15 minutes and wash off with water after.
  • Repeat this process as often as needed to enjoy smoother skin.


how to have clear skin

How do I unclog my pores?

You can start by cleansing your skin to remove dirt and debris that can block your pores and cause breakouts. You can also try exfoliating your skin with a gentle facial scrub or by using a face mask or pore strip to draw out any impurities.

Why are my pores clogged?

Your pores can get clogged for many reasons including a buildup of dead skin cells on your skin, excess sebum (oil) production, dry skin, and stuck-up dirt in your pores. 

How long does it take for pores to shrink?

It takes a few months to make a visible difference in the size of your pores.

For example, if you consume a diet of fresh fruits and vegetables, maintain a healthy skincare routine and exercise regularly, your pores will reduce in size and get healthier in a matter of months. 


Large pores on the face can be a major turn-off for many people. They make us feel uncomfortable and insecure, and they can even affect how we interact with others.

Not only are they unsightly and difficult to cover up with makeup, but large pores are also one of the main contributors to acne breakouts, blackheads, and clogged pores.

From cleansing your face regularly to trying out natural home remedies, these tips will help shrink pores on the face to better preserve its optimal condition and prevent skin conditions such as blackheads, whiteheads, and acne.

Thanks for reading.

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