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- Pore-minimizing treatments are an easy way to extract oil and tighten skin to help shrink the appearance of pores.
- Our top pick is the Perricone MC Exfoliating Pore Refiner because it exfoliates, clarifies, and refines the skin’s surface making pores less noticeable.
When it comes to your skin-care routine, dealing with enlarged pores may not seem as big of a deal as fighting acne or preventing wrinkles. But for some of us, finding ways to get rid of these pesky dots can be an all-consuming issue.
Unfortunately, pore size is determined by genetics, so you can’t physically make pores smaller, but you might be able to reduce the appearance of them by using pore-minimizing treatments. These treatments tackle factors such as excess oil, dead skin cells, trapped sebum, and UV exposure, which all make pores appear larger.
Unlike foundations and primers, pore minimizers don’t cover up pores, but instead, work to deep clean and refine them, so they look much smaller. Some even feature ingredients that aim to prevent signs of aging, which can also affect pore size.
Like most skin-care products, the number of pore minimizers on the market can be overwhelming. So we did the research to find the best options available. Whether you are looking for a pore-minimizing scrub, mask, or cleanser, these are the treatments that will reduce the appearance of pores.
Here are the best pore minimizers you can buy:
- Best pore minimizer overall: Perricone MC Exfoliating Pore Refiner
- Best pore-minimizing mask: Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Vacuum Cleaner Mask
- Best pore-minimizing serum: Caudalie Vinopure Pore Minimizing Serum
- Best pore-minimizing scrub: Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Intensive Exfoliating Treatment
- Best pore-minimizing cleanser: Kiehl’s Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser
Read on in the slides below to check out our top picks.
The best pore minimizer overall
Why you’ll love it: The Perricone MC Exfoliating Pore Refiner is a gentle exfoliator that reduces the appearance of pores while it improves skin tone and appearance.
The Perricone MC Exfoliating Pore Refiner is specially formulated with Dr. Perricone’s patented Nrf2 Antioxidant Support Complex, which works to fight the first signs of noticeable pores. The gentle scrub exfoliates, clarifies, and refines skin to deep clean pores and make them appear smaller.
It also works to even out skin tone and get rid of any dullness and discolorations. The exfoliator features turmeric and green tea, which have anti-aging properties, while the formula’s antioxidants work to combat damaging free radicals that cause highly visible pores.
In a four-week consumer study, 87% of testers said they noticed their pores appeared smaller and more refined. The handy pore minimizer has more than 3,500 likes on Sephora with a 4.5-star rating.
A few reviewers with sensitive skin found that the pore refiner dried out their skin when they used it every day as a toner, but when they started to only use it 2-3 times a week it worked great. So they suggested to use it every other day until you see how much your skin can handle.
Pros: Makes pores appear smaller and more refined, balances out skin tone and appearance, smells good, deep cleans pores
Cons: Might be too harsh for some to use every day
The best pore-minimizing mask
Dr. Brandt Skincare
Why you’ll love it: The Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Vacuum Cleaner Mask is a detoxifying mask that deep cleans pores, making them less noticeable.
As its name implies, the Dr. Brandt Skincare Pores No More Vacuum Cleaner Mask works to suck out impurities from pores much like a vacuum. The formula’s salicylic acid, zinc, and vitamin A work together to loosen dirt, oil, and sebum from the pores. They then deep clean and purify the pores.
Meanwhile, the mask’s botanical extracts and glycolic acid help tighten pores, making them appear smaller and your skin look healthier overall. InStyle magazine’s review claims that the mask makes your pores look smaller in just five minutes.
The mask has a 4.2-star rating on Sephora with more than 3,800 likes and 83% of reviewers online saying they would recommend it to their friends. Shoppers say it helps their sensitive, oily skin feel "less oily during the day" and some add that it improved their skin’s texture.
A few complained about the strong smell, but most reviewers said it disappeared as the mask dried and didn’t stop them from using it again.
Pros: Deep cleans pores, makes pores more refined, fast acting, makes skin glow and look healthier
Cons: Strong smell
The best pore-minimizing serum
Why you’ll love it: Looking for a lightweight serum that will purify pores and shrink their appearance? Try the Caudalie Vinopure Pore Minimizing Serum.
The Caudalie Vinopure Pore Minimizing Serum is formulated with the highest concentration of natural salicylic acid to deeply penetrate pores and target the oil, bacteria, and dead skin found in them.
The serum is also formulated with rosewater to help enhance your glow and hydrate skin, as well as antioxidant grape seed polyphenols to prevent the oil in your pores from oxidizing and turning into blackheads.
While very powerful and fast acting, the Allure Best of Beauty Award Winning serum is also gentle enough to be used on even the most sensitive of skin. In a 28-day clinical study, 82% of testers agreed pores look tightened.
It also has the Clean at Sephora seal meaning it is made without the ingredients shoppers told Sephora they’d like to avoid. It is made without any fragrances, mineral oils, sulfates, parabens, formaldehydes, and phthalates.
The pore minimizing serum has more than 20,000 likes on Sephora and a 4.5-star rating. Reviewers who bought the serum say that it gave their skin a new healthy look and glow.
Some reviewers were put off by how expensive a 1-ounce bottle is, but most said a little bit of the product goes a long way.
Pros: Clinically proven to tighten pores appearance, prevents blackheads, deep cleans pores, clean at Sephora seal
Cons: Expensive for the bottle size
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