How do I manage open Pores?
This is a question that I am frequently asked in my clinic. Open pores in the skin is a problem affecting people across all skin types. Before we are able to answer the question, how do I manage my open pores, it is important to understand the reasons behind open pores. Understanding the causes may help prevent open pores and will certainly slow down worsening of the open pores.
What are the causes of open pores?
There are two main causes of open pores
- Ageing of the skin and UV induced damage to the skin. I have put them together as UV induced damage causes significant ageing of the skin.
- Acne or pimples. Acne and an oily skin does make the open pores more visible. Also acne has a tendency to leave ice-pick scars (these are literally speaking scars on the skin that look like somebody has taken an ice-pick and poked it against the skin). Many people confuse these scars with open pores.
What can I do at home to prevent open pores?
As we have seen, UV induced damage is a most important reason for open pores. It follows that if you use a good sunscreen and protect your skin from UV induced damage, it should slow down the appearance of open pores. Use a good quality sunscreen of spf 30 or more, PA ++ or more. Apply the sunscreen generously 15 mins before you step out of the house. Also re-apply the sunscreen every 2 hours when you are outdoors.
Get your acne treated: a nice way to prevent scarring of pimples is to get then treated effectively and early. If you have a tendency to get scars, it is better to get acne treated aggressively rather than having to deal with the scars at a later date.
Use a toner regularly: Using a toner once or twice a day can help slow down the appearance of open pores.
Use some medicated ointments. There are some medicated ointments like retinol, tretinoin or glycolic acid containing creams that can help reduce the appearance of open pores. You can get a prescription for these from the dermatologist.
Treatments for open pores
There are some treatment options that can work quite well for open pores:
- Chemical peels: scientific studies show that getting regular glycolic acid peels can help lay down collagen in the skin and hence reduce the appearance of open pores. This has the added benefit of also giving a nice glow to the skin. However, the results are slow and if patience is not your virtue, you may not be happy with this option.
- Microneedling: Microneedling using a dermaroller can help lay down collagen in the skin and helps reduce the open pores. For maximum benefit this should be combined with Vitamin C serum and also Vitamin C tablets. Mutliple sessions are required but you will start noticing the benefit within a month.
- Mesobotox: Diluted botox injections are given over the cheeks. This helps to relax the muscles and helps reduce the appearance of open pores. The result s very dramatic and appears within a week. However, this needs to be repeated once every 3 months for continued benefit .
- Hyaluronic acid fillers: A small quantity of hyaluronic acid is placed by superficial injections in the skin. The hyaluronic acid swells up by absorbing water and fills up the open pores. The results are great but needs to be repeated for sustained benefit.
How Do I Manage my open pores?
It is best to follow a combined approach. You must certainly use a sunscreen regularly. I would also advise using some medicated creams on a regular basis. In addition, you may consider treatments. What treatment option would be best for you will need to be decided after taking your lifestyle and expectations into consideration.