The Perfect Solution to Minimize Enlarged Pores

Posted by Sandra Scott on

Worrying about your skin can completely kill your confidence. And large pores are a super common problem for a lot of guys.

But just knowing this doesn’t make them any less annoying!

If enlarged pores are ruining your look, we’re here to help. Because although pores never actually shrink - they can appear to! 

Read on for 6 ways to minimize the look of your pores - as well as how to even out your complexion and control shine. 


handsome young man looking closely at his skin in the mirror


Firstly… they’re probably not as bad as you think

It’s worth mentioning that no one sees your pores the way that you see them (ie. up close and personal in the mirror).

In harsh bathroom lighting they may seem very obvious to you, but in normal daylight other people probably don’t notice them at all.

That being said, if they’re bothering you – especially on your nose and forehead - then there’s several things you can do to refine the look of your pores.


What can make pores look big?

The size and look of your pores depend on quite a few factors - things like genetics, your skin type and how much sun exposure you’ve had are all part of the equation.

Any skin type can have enlarged pores. But if you have oily skin – the most common skin type amongst men – then any shine on your face can exaggerate your pores and make them look larger.

And UV rays from the sun break down the collagen in your skin. Collagen is responsible for keeping your face firm and tight, so repeated exposure to the sun leaves you with larger pores - as well as sagging skin.

Those things aside, your pores most likely look larger than they should be because they're clogged or not as tight as you'd like them to be.

And those are things you can do something about.


What you can do to reduce enlarged pores

There’s two ways you can shrink the appearance of your pores:

  1. By unclogging them
  2. By tightening them.

    Let’s start with …

    How to unclog your pores 

    When a pore is enlarged, it’s generally because it’s being ‘stretched out’ - usually by dead skin cells, dirt, bacteria or excess oil. All of which can form into a blackhead.

    • The right cleansers and exfoliators can remove the dead skin cells and unclog congested pores.


    Otis Skincare products for men

    Our skincare products have been designed to bring out the best in a man's skin


    How to tighten your skin 

    You can tighten and firm your skin by using a moisturizer with collagen-boosting ingredients. Collagen is what gives our skin structure and firmness so when it’s weak it can cause sagging skin and make your pores look larger.

    • So choose a lightweight mattifying moisturizer that won’t highlight or exaggerate your pores. And one with anti-aging ingredients that improve the collagen levels of your skin – like the peptides in our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer.
    • And wearing a broad-spectrum SPF every day will protect your skin from environmental damage that destroys collagen.
    • There’s also pore-minimizing primers that you can apply to give your skin a smooth (almost poreless) look.
    • And finally, if your pores are really enlarged, and bothering you a lot then there are some professional treatments that can tighten them. Chemical peels and laser treatments give excellent results and we detail those below. They work really well on any acne scarring too.


    The power of Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s) to minimize your pores

    Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA’s) are the holy grail when it comes to minimizing your pores.

    AHA’s are natural chemical exfoliants - and they’re expert at clearing away the dead skin cells and excess oil that cause your pores to stretch and look bigger.

    They work by gently dissolving the bonds that hold dry, dead skin cells to the surface of your skin.

    And because AHA’s also accelerate cell renewal and stimulate your skin’s natural repair mechanism, they smooth and brighten your skin too.

    So they make an instant improvement to your complexion – as well as refining your pores.

    They’re also tolerable if you have dry or sensitive skin.

    So look for a face wash , or lotion, that includes an AHA (like Glycolic Acid or Lactic Acid).

    Lactic Acid is the most gentle type of AHA which is why we included it in our Daily Face Wash.


    Otis Skincare exfoliating Daily Face Wash for men on wooden table with bright sunlight highlighting

    Our Daily Face Wash gently exfoliates and keeps your face looking clear and bright without drying out your skin.


    So here are the 6 tips that will have your pores looking flawless.

    ACTION PLAN: 6 simple ways to naturally minimize your pores


    #1 Clean your face twice a day 

    Rinsing away all the gunk that gets stuck in your pores will reveal fresh, unclogged skin underneath.

    Cleaning makes a huge difference in the way your skin looks and feels – as well as reducing the appearance of your pores.

    So washing your face twice a day is essential.

    In the morning it gets rid of any build-up of oil and dead skin cells that have accumulated throughout the night. It’s a good idea to clean them off of your face before they have a chance to clog your pores.
    And at night you need to remove the general grime and bacteria from the day, as well as any oil that has accumulated on your skin. So washing your face again in the evening is a must before you go to sleep.


    #2 Exfoliate

    Regular exfoliation is one of the best things you can do for your pores – and your skin in general.

    It removes dead skin cells, brightens your skin, and makes your face feel smooth and really, really clean.

    And it stops your pores from getting clogged in the future.


    Definitely stay away from rough facial scrubs!

    They can irritate your skin - leading to swelling that causes your pores to appear even larger.

    As we said, a face wash or lotion which includes a gentle AHA is your best option for effectively exfoliating your face without irritation.

    Look for products with Lactic Acid

    Our favourite ingredient for exfoliating and treating enlarged pores is Lactic Acid because it works the best at dissolving dead cells and absorbing oil.

    It's milder than other acids (but just as effective) so it doesn't cause irritation even if you have sensitive skin.

    We’ve included Lactic Acid in our Daily Face Wash to gently exfoliate as well as keep your face looking clear and bright without drying out your skin.

    Fresh, clean, healthy skin in one easy step.



    GOOD TO KNOW: Our Daily Face Wash also includes:

      Glycerin to hydrate your face and prevent any dryness

      Tea Tree Oil to purify your skin and help to regulate excess oil

      Black Tea Extract, rich in anti-oxidants, to help defend against environmental damage

      Aloe Vera to soothe and hydrate your skin.

    (For more on exfoliation, check out "A Man's Ultimate Guide to Exfoliation: FAQ's").


    #3 Don’t touch your face

    This tip seems easy, but you would be amazed at how often you touch your face each day.

    So, unless you're washing your face (or applying other skin care), keep your hands off!

    The bacteria on your fingers can transfer to your skin and end up in your pores. So it's best to minimise the time you spend touching your face, let alone picking at it!

    And whilst trying to squeeze a clogged pore, or blackhead, can be tempting, ultimately, it just leaves your skin looking red and could lead to scarring.

    For more on how to treat blackheads check out “How to get rid of blackheads”. 


    #4 Apply a lightweight, mattifying moisturizer

    Hydrated skin is healthy skin.

    And hydrated pores are going to appear smaller because the skin around them is firmer. 

    But you need to avoid heavy creams! These will congest your pores – and add unnecessary shine that exaggerates how large your pores look.

    Try to get in the habit of moisturizing every day with a collagen-boosting moisturizer (because when collagen is weak it makes pores look larger).

    Our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer is lightweight, feels good and keeps your skin firm and hydrated – without clogging your pores or adding shine.



    Even better...

    It's packed full of the best anti aging ingredients to boost your collagen, keeping your face looking smooth and reducing the appearance of your pores, as well as any wrinkles.

    Our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer :

    • hydrates and smooths your skin throughout the day, but with no shininess whatsoever
    • refines the look of your pores
    • stimulates collagen production to keep your skin firm
    • evens out your skin tone
    • and reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, especially the fine lines around your eyes.

    And it’s rich in anti-oxidants to keep your skin looking even toned. No more red blotches!

    Our Hydrating Daily Moisturizer firms, hydrates and regenerates your skin - without creating shine. And it absorbs super quickly!


    #5 Wear sunscreen every day

    UV rays from the sun break down the collagen in your skin.

    It’s the collagen which keeps your skin looking firm and smooth – and affects how tight your pores look. So you need to protect your skin from these harmful UV rays every day – even on cloudy days!

    Remember to apply a sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 on your face every single morning.

    Some sunscreen formulas can be too shiny - and that only makes your pores look more prominent – but there are matt formulas out there which are much better.

    A physical, mineral type of sunscreen is best as it won’t clog your pores, even though it can be harder to rub in.


    #6 Use a primer

    A primer is a type of lightweight balm designed to minimize the look of your pores and smooth out your skin texture of any imperfections like fine lines. Look for a primer that is light and oil-free - and apply it after your moisturizer.

    (And if you're new to skincare we've got a helpful step by step guide here - "Beginner's Guide to Men's Skincare").


    A professional solution to tighten your pores 

    If your pores are really large, and bothering you, there are a couple of professional treatments which will tighten up your skin and improve the overall texture. They’re both really good for smoothing out any acne scarring too.

    Chemical Peels

    A chemical peel should be carried out by a registered dermatologist.

    The new generation of peels work under the surface of the skin to improve the appearance of your pores. They will give you an instant glow without making your skin look worse before it looks better as the ‘old-style’ peels did.

    Laser treatment 

    Lasers are another way to address problems with your pores.

    They zap microscopic holes into your skin to resurface deep acne scars and uneven pores.

    The latest lasers stimulate the skin’s deepest layers to smooth and refine your complexion - with minimal pain.

    Of course, both of these options can be expensive – and you’ll probably need several sessions before you get results. So make sure to consult with a dermatologist to determine what treatment is best for your skin...and how much it will cost.



    Why do I have larger pores on my nose? 

    Nose pores are naturally bigger than those on the rest of your face because the sebaceous glands underneath them are larger.

    And if you have oily skin, these are the pores most likely to become enlarged and look the most prominent.

    If the pores on your nose get clogged, with a combination of sebum and dead skin cells then they will be even more noticeable. So the answer is to clean and exfoliate your face every day to keep your pores clear.


    Should I squeeze any clogged pores? 

    We wouldn’t recommend squeezing, because the tissue around the pores can be damaged with aggressive pressure and can lead to scarring.

    Not only that, but excessive squeezing of your pores can actually stretch them out and make them permanently larger in the long run.


    The Takeaway 

    Although you can’t actually make pores shrink—you can minimize them so that they appear to.

    If enlarged pores are ruining your look, there’s several things you can do.

    Daily cleansing and regular exfoliation are the best ways to keep your pores clean and stop them from being ‘stretched out’. While a collagen-boosting moisturizer and using sun protection will help to tighten your skin and reduce the look of your pores.

    The following 6 tips will also even out your complexion and control shine. 

    #1 Clean twice a day
    #2 Exfoliate
    #3 Don’t touch your face
    #4 Avoid heavy creams/wear a lightweight moisturizer
    #5 Wear Sunscreen
    #6 Use a primer

    A good skincare routine will keep your pores refined and your skin looking great!

    All you need to keep looking handsome. 





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