I’m back to blogging again after 8 mths! It’s a crazy time now with the coronavirus spreading across the world and causing widespread panic and with quarantines and circuit breakers put in place :(. I hope everyone is staying safe and keeping sane at home. On the bright side we are given an opportunity to stop and take a bit of a break from the world and perhaps focus more on ourselves and what we need. It’s also the perfect time to focus on our skincare regime! Without having to go out and put on make up we can give our skin a much needed breather. My skin got pretty bad a month ago – I’ve been having small break outs and my pores seem to have gotten larger. What better time than now to tackle this problem?!
There are a few reasons as to why people have enlarged pores. Firstly it is due to excessive sebum produced resulting in very oily skin. Another is that as you age, the elasticity around pores decrease and this makes them look bigger. Also too much exposure to the sun can increase your pore size as it thickens your skin and reduces your skin’s collagen. Genetics is another reason for large pores, chances are you have inherited it from a parent. Also fun fact – guys have larger pores than us girls although hormonal highs and lows can cause pores to look larger.
So what can we do about large pores? Well one thing you can do is to exfoliate regularly. This helps to remove oil and dead skin from your face that makes your pores look smaller. It also brightens your skin. There are two kinds of exfoliators: Physical exfoliators which are cleansers and Chemical exfoliators that are either AHAs (Alpha-Hydroxy acids) or BHAs (Beta-Hydroxy acids). Remember not to over-exfoliate your skin (not more than twice a week) though as this could make it inflamed and very dry. The exfoliator I chose to get 2 weeks ago is the La Roche-Posay (you know I love their products :D) Effaclar Micro-Peeling Purifying Gel. This gel actually has the highest percentage of salicylic acid (2%) in the Effaclar range is meant to unclog pores from dead cells on the face, chest and back acne. It comes in a green tube that’s 200ml and cost S$36.90. It has a smooth gel texture which isn’t sticky and is clear coloured. Key ingredients are salicylic acid is meant to unclog pores and clear imperfections, LHA (beta-lipohydroxy acid) which is meant to micro-exfoliate skin gently and refine pores, and Zinc deeply purifies the skin and reduces excess oil. Salicylic acid is a BHA and LHA is a derivative of Salicylic Acid which decreases the concentration of bacteria found within pores. Zinc has anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial qualities and helps to regulate oil. When you lather it on your face there’s a sight tingling sensation after a few seconds but it doesn’t irritate my extremely sensitive skin. After using it for the first time, I noticed my skin was softer and felt really refreshed. I need to use it for a longer time to tell whether it helps small acne, blackheads and pigmented marks (which it also claims to improve). I really like the fact that you can use it on your back if you get back acne as well. I do really enjoy using it though and hope to see results over time.
Another thing you can do to help minimise pores is to use a clay mask consistently. They are a great way to absorb excessive oil. It gives your skin a temporary tightened sensation. Overusing them can however dry out the skin and worsen the ageing process. Also don’t exfoliate and use a clay mask on the same day as this could be overkill. I have been using the La Roche-Posay Effaclar Unclogging purifying sebo-controlling mask for nearly a year (I did a review about it last year). It comes in a blue 100ml tube and cost S$25.90. It has a creamy clay texture and goes onto the skin like a dream. You’re supposed to apply it twice a week and leave it on for at least 5 minutes before insing it off (I like to leave it on for a bit longer). Key ingredients are Kaolin and Argilla that have natural absorbing properties, Panthenol that has a smooth and limit rebound effect and Cellulobeads which neutralize pollution impurities. It also contains citric acid which is an AHA (though some formulations are BHAs) and is used to dry out excess sebum and clean out dead skin cells deep in your pores. I love this mask it’s not harsh at all on my sensitive skin and has really produced visible results! It has minimised my pores, reduced excessive oil without drying up my skin and always leaves me feeling refreshed. I have to admit I’ve stopped using it the last few months which could be why my skin could have gotten worse!
One more thing that you can add to your skincare routine is Vitamin C. Vitamin C also known as Ascorbic acid has a lot of benefits for the skin – it is an antioxidant that helps with anti-ageing, evens out skin tone and enhances radiance. Antioxidants like Vitamin C are key in pore-minimising serums as they unclog congested pores, dead skin and reduce excess sebum. They also help in increasing collagen production. You should slowly ease into using it as it could cause a reaction in sensitive skins. Also another important thing to note is if the Vitamin C serum you purchased turns brown (it should be a light yellow colour) stop using it as Vitamin C oxidizes over time. The vitamin C serum I chose to try was the La Roche-Posay Pure Vitamin C10 anti-wrinkle anti-oxidant renovating serum. It comes in a cute 30ml orange bottle with a syringe you can attach and cost S$79.90 (the most expensive of the lot). It’s meant to help with wrinkles, a lack of radiance and irregular texture. So the first time I used this I LOVED it! It has a really velvety non-greasy texture and absorbs really fast. Key ingredients are Pure Vitamin C (obviously), Salicylic Acid to promote clear skin and exfoliate and smooth at the same time, and Neurosensine a smoothing peptide which helps with skin irritation and is anti-inflammatory. After using it my skin really did feel instantly hydrated and looked really glowy – I apply it to my face and neck every other day. I’ve only used it for a couple week so I’ve yet to see if it really helps my pores but my skin already looks and feels so much better! It’s supposed to be good as a make-up base as well – I haven’t had the chance to use it under make-up but will update this post once I do.
In conclusion I’m really happy with the 3 La Roche-Posay products I got to help with my pore problem. I love the brand and they have really quality products with the best ingredients. My skin and pores have improved so much the last 2 weeks probably because I’ve hardly been wearing make-up and have been using these 3 products religiously. My favourites would have to be the clay mask and vitamin c serum as they really produce massive results every time I use them and they will definitely remain as regulars in my skincare regime. It is also so important that you use moisturizer and make-up that doesn’t clog up your pores (noncomedogenic), spf and remember to take off your make-up before bed every night. Hope this post was helpful to those who have the same pore problem as me and thanks for stopping by! X