Enlarged pores are a common skin concern, affecting individuals of all ages. Enlarged pores can lead to rough-looking skin texture, as well as a darkening of skin tone due to shadowing.
There are a variety of causes which contribute to enlarged pores, with cause and treatment usually varying based upon a patient's age.
Causes of Enlarged Pores
There are two general classifications for the causes of enlarged pores, which will affect how they are treated. These include both clogged pores and sagging skin.
1. Clogged Pores
One frequent skin concern leading to enlarged pores is clogging. This can result from an imbalance of hormones triggering an excess of sebum secretion, or pores may become clogged due to inadequate skin care.
2. Skin Sagging
With age, comes degeneration and loss of firmness in the skin. The gradual accumulation of cellular damage over time results in the skin losing its elasticity, whereupon gravity causes sagging. This can result in pores becoming enlarged, or stretched out of their usual shape.
Pore Concerns Change with Age
Blackheads and other clogged pores are common to the teenage years, and -- despite conventional wisdom -- frequently continue through the 20's, during which time hormone production is still somewhat unstable. Some individuals still experience chronically clogged pores through their 30's. From the 40's onward, skin sagging often becomes a more overriding concern in terms of basic skin care.
This can become a concern earlier, with some individuals in their 30's requiring treatment for both causes. In addition, sebum, a substance our body produces to aid in normal functioning of the dermis, is sometimes produced in excess due to age-related hormone disorders, resulting in drying and clogging the pores.
Topical Treatments: Topical treatments include retinoids, alpha hydroxy, or other options which work to reduce the size of pores. These treatments are antibacterial, an important concern for clogged pores, and they work against sun-related skin damage.
Chemical Peels: Prescription-strength chemical peels can help remove the outermost layers of dead skin, revealing fresh, healthy new skin underneath while reducing the appearance of clogged pores.
Non-Ablative Laser Treatment: Non-Ablative laser treatment helps to resurface the outer layers of skin, by accelerating its natural collagen-boosting properties. Side effects can include a temporary minor redness and flaking, but a series of as few as two treatments can help to ensure long-term results.
IPL Photofacial: IPL stands for "intense pulsed light." IPL refines skin texture and reduce the appearance of enlarged or deformed pores. A single treatment results in a lasting improvement to skin texture and creates a visibly healthier appearance.
Photodynamic Therapy: Photodynamic therapy minimizes the appearance of oil glands. Typically applied to the face, this can help treat clogged or deformed pores caused in part by a hormone imbalance. This treatment method also contributes to improved health regarding sun-related skin concerns.