If you’ve found yourself searching for the answer on how to unclog pores, you’re far from alone. Clogged pores are a common skin care concern that can be a major pain, and knowing how to handle them can be a challenge, too. The truth is, before even knowing how to clean out clogged pores, you’ll need to learn a few basics—starting with the answer to one important question: What causes clogged pores? Here, we’re sharing what you should know and giving skin care tips you can use to help manage clogged pores. From facial cleansers to gentle exfoliators, there’s something for you to incorporate into your daily skincare routine.
What Are Pores?
According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), there are little pockets called sweat glands in the middle layer of your skin (the dermis). These glands make sweat—as you’d expect—which goes through little tubes and comes out of tiny holes called pores. Pores play an essential role in keeping our bodies cool (through sweat) and flushing out toxic substances the body doesn’t need. And when those pores get clogged they can lead to breakouts and severe acne.
4 Common Causes Of Clogged Pores
If you’ve been experiencing breakouts, it could be due to clogged pores. Read on to find out more about these common causes and products you can use to help purify the skin.
1. Dead Skin
The skin goes through a frequent cycle of shedding and creating new skin cells. And according to the Mayo Clinic, pores can become clogged due to dead skin cells accumulating on the skin’s surface. As you get older, your skin’s ability to shed those dead skin cells from the skin’s surface slows down, which can lead to buildup if not exfoliated. So make sure to use an exfoliator two to three times a week, like the L’Oréal Paris Revitalift Bright Reveal Brightening Daily Scrub Cleanser. It’s formulated with glycolic acid and gentle micro-pearls to exfoliate dull skin cells from the surface, leaving you with visibly brighter-looking skin.
Editor’s Tip: Always use sunscreen after using this product, as glycolic acid can cause sun sensitivity.
#2. Excess Oil
Your skin has sebaceous glands, which create natural oils (aka sebum) that are meant to nourish the skin. In a perfect world, sebum would simply keep the skin soft and hydrated. However, there are times when sebaceous glands can become overactive, leading to an excess amount of oil being created. This can then cause dead skin cells to stick together instead of shed off. So be sure to use the right facial cleanser to reduce excess oil. Reach for the L’Oréal Paris Pure-Clay Detox & Brighten Cleanser, formulated with charcoal to help draw out impurities from the skin like dirt and oil. After each use, your skin will be left clean and appear more luminous.
#3. Over-Cleansing And Over-Exfoliating
Cleansing and exfoliating should play an essential role in your skin care routine, but too much of a good thing can turn bad. And if you cleanse or exfoliate too much, you may risk stripping your skin of its natural oils, which can cause your oil glands to overcompensate and create even more oil. Then, that excess oil can clog your pores. The AAD also suggests that scrubbing your skin too frequently can cause irritation, leading to inflamed, more noticeable pores. So make sure you cleanse twice a day (once in the morning and once before bed) and pay attention to your skin when you exfoliate. If you notice some irritation, reduce the number of times you exfoliate per week.
#4. Using The Wrong Beauty Products
Sad as it is to say, some of your favorite beauty products may be to blame for your clogged pores. So look for products with non-comedogenic formulas, which are created with ingredients that won’t clog pores. Some of our favorite makeup products with non-comedogenic formulas to help prevent breakouts are the L’Oréal Paris Studio Secrets Professional Magic Perfecting Base Face Primer, the L’Oréal Paris True Match™ Super Blendable Makeup, and the L’Oréal Paris True Match Eye Cream in a Concealer, 0.5% Hyaluronic Acid. In addition to using non-comedogenic makeup, the AAD recommends sticking with face products (makeup and skin care) that specify they are oil-free.
Photo Credit: Photo: Chaunte Vaughn