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Enlarged pores aren’t potholes – quit trying to fill them!


Move over blackhead extractors – there’s a new fad sweeping countertops, and it’s here to clog your pores! More women are adding “pore fillers” to their daily skin care agenda, hoping to blur or erase enlarged pores from their complexion completely. However, much like BB creams, you can file these under “unnecessary skin care”. While you might envision pores as tiny potholes that a small “fill” can fix, you’ll only be creating a bigger problem – a more enlarged pore!


What causes large pores?

The size of your pores depends mostly on genetics and how you care for your skin. Some people owe their big pores to genetics – they inherited an oily skin type, which can cause enlarged pores.

People with a higher tendency towards oily skin are much more likely to have larger pores.  This is because the pores on your face stretch to accommodate the secretion of the oil onto the skin’s surface. It’s like filling a balloon with water. As the balloon becomes full, it stretches. That’s exactly what happens to the hair follicle and follicular opening, leading to stretched out pores.

Others have acquired big pores as a result of prolonged congestion. Dealing with congested skin, AKA skin with clogged pores and huge blackheads, for a prolonged amount of time will stretch pores.


Are pore fillers bad for your skin?

They can be! When you use certain pore fillers you run the risk of creating even larger pores. This is because the pores on your face stretch to accommodate the product filling them. Plus, fillers only add more dirt, debris and oil to your skin, making your enlarged pore problem worse. Instead of trying to mask the problem, minimize the appearance of your pores with the right skin care routine.


How to prevent large pores

Once a buildup of dirt, oil, and dead skin has stretched a pore, there’s no way to shrink it back to its original size. That’s why it’s crucial to prevent large pores in the first place.

While the reason behind having larger pores can vary from person to person, it’s physiologically impossible to close (or open) your pores – there aren’t muscles to make them expand or contract. Aside from preventing them in the first place, all you can do is minimize their appearance, and filling pores with a product that promises to blur, erase, or make them disappear altogether is the exact opposite of what should be done to help make them look smaller! Pore fillers only stretch your pores and make them larger – the opposite of what you want.


How to minimize pores on face

The best way to minimize pore appearance is to ensure they are clear of product and dirt. Here’s your 4-step at-home agenda for tiny-looking pores:

1) Cleanse

This is the number one way to prevent your enlarged pores from stretching further. Give clogged pores a deep clean with a cleanser that’s appropriate for your skin type. Flash Foam Cleanser works for most skin types to give skin gentle daily exfoliation while cleansing to minimize the appearance of pores. Doing so will ensure your skin is clear of any debris that can cause extremely clogged pores, and emphasize their appearance.

2) Exfoliate

Your skin naturally sheds dead skin cells, completely regenerating once every 30 days. As you age, this process slows, and can lead to clogged pores – an issue that will not only make pores appear larger, but also stretch them so they actually are larger! Rev up your skin’s natural exfoliation process and uncover a more radiant complexion with a leave-on exfoliator like Quick Refiner or manual microdermabrasion like Pumice Peel. Both will keep pores clear.

3) Treat

For stubborn pores, don’t rely on skin-damaging pore strips to remove impurities. Instead, reach for a clay-based facial mask with balancing plant extracts that acts as a vacuum to draw out pore-clogging debris and replenish hydration. For a deep pore purge, apply a stimulating, exfoliating mask 7 days in a row to eliminate impurities.

4) Control

Excess oil causes large pores, so controlling oil is crucial. Keep pores clear throughout the day by balancing oil production at the source and absorbing excess oil at your skin’s surface with an oil control mattifier.

See the different ways to use Oil Control Mattifier in this quick video:


More pore perfecting favorites

If you’re following every step from the list above and you still need a clogged pores treatment to minimize enlarged pores, look no further. These two pore perfecting favorites are the best products for large and clogged pores:


Age Activist Clinical Youth Serum 

This potent serum uses a coalition of youth-advocating ingredients that rally together to brighten, hydrate, exfoliate, smooth roughness, improve the appearance of lines and pores, and target collagen for firmer, more elastic skin. The fermented pumpkin enzyme used in Age Activist Clinical Youth Serum is a cutting edge ingredient that rapidly increases cell renewal to dramatically improve pore size.



Skin Editor 

Skin Editor is an imperfection-editing leave on AHA peel creme that instantly smoothes, diminishes dullness, brightens dark damage, improves clarity, hydrates and reduces the look of lines and pores.This incredibly elegant leave-on formula features dual-depth penetrating 3% glycolic and 7% lactic acid that targets deep congestion – FAST. In fact, in a consumer perception study 91% of people say Skin Editor exfoliates pore-clogging cells* dramatically in just two weeks!



Stop treating your pores like potholes, filling them with products that claim to make them vanish – it’s impossible! Remember: if a miracle product that promises vanishing pores sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you have any questions about pore fillers or enlarged pores in general, sign up for our email newsletter or comment below!


*scientifically tested results based on a 14-day consumer perception study


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Comments (20)

Christine Martin says:
Jul 19, 2014

Sorry, I’ve got to disagree with you on this one.

Uzmah Hussain says:
Jul 21, 2014

It’s very informative article. As I am working woman I have to wear some make up daily.i use toner cleanser exfoliating etc on regular basis to recover up my pores problem. Can you please guide me that If we use face powder or pan cake to control oil in face will it be helpful or harmful to manage with open pores. Thanks

Teresa Stenzel
Teresa Stenzel says:
Jul 21, 2014

Hi Christine,
Thank you for posting a comment. I’d like to hear more about what you disagree with in this blog. You can respond here, or if you’d like, email me at and we can chat. Thanks!

    Chanda says:
    Apr 8, 2017

    Hi what is the quick refiner? And do you use the oil controller under your moisturizer or on top thank you

      Teresa Stenzel
      Teresa Stenzel says:
      Apr 10, 2017

      Quick Refiner is a leave-on liquid exfoliator that targets pores, dullness and line. Oil Control Mattifier can be applied in the morning under your moisturizer/SPF and it can also be applied throughout the day on top for touch ups to blot breakthrough shine.

Teresa Stenzel
Teresa Stenzel says:
Jul 21, 2014

Hi Uzmah,
I would try to find a foundation or powder that is designed for an oilier skin type, first of all. You can apply the Oil Control Mattifier underneath your makeup to control oil, which will help greatly. You may even find that you use less makeup once your skin starts seeing the benefits of your skin care. Then, just ensure that you remove your makeup every night and do a proper cleanse, tone, moisturize, etc. so that your makeup is not left sitting on your skin overnight. This will really help keep your pores unclogged and your face beautiful!

Jenny says:
Sep 7, 2014

Hi, I want to know how can I eliminate the white heads as well as the black heads. I’m more concern about the white heads since they are harder to eliminate. Thank you in advance.

Teresa Stenzel
Teresa Stenzel says:
Sep 8, 2014

Hi Jenny, By whiteheads, what do you mean? Do they look like raised white center with a red ring around it, or are they harder, feeling more like a grain of sand? And where are they on your face? Are they chronic or crop up just once in a while? You can post your response here or email me directly at so we can chat privately. Thanks!

    Adele says:
    Feb 1, 2017

    I have theses white heads . They do come and go . And are hard with no red circle round them . Can u help ? X

      Teresa Stenzel
      Teresa Stenzel says:
      Feb 1, 2017

      Hi Adele,
      How you take care of these depends on a few things. Let me ask a few questions to help me figure out what’s going on with your skin. Are these whiteheads hard to the touch like a grain of sand under the skin, or soft and pliable? Where are they on your face and how long do they typically last? Lastly, what are you currently using on your skin to cleanse, tone, moisturize, etc. Is your skin dry, combination or oily?

Dana Kandt says:
Sep 10, 2014

Hi…I am an esthetician, and have been using Bio Elements personally and professionally since 1998. I agree with what you had to say in the article, for the most part. Definitely every thing is done case by case, I am not a huge fane of Kerafole personally, and only a few of my clients care for it. But the Pumice Peel, OMG!!!! Always a favorite, and I think its becaude you actually see immediate results. My question is this….why in researching other skin care sites, is everyone rating Bio as one of the worse lines to use? I dont understand!!! I have had maybe 3 clients not totally sold on the line. I even have male clients that use the products (and not just the mens line!!!)


Marisa says:
Sep 14, 2014

In regards to the Kerafole purge. I have done this a couple of times and it truly is amazing. People noticed a difference and were commenting on how good my skin looked and asked what I was doing. The purge (7 Days) will change your skin.

aleisha jain says:
Jul 23, 2016

i had extremely small visible pores near my cheeks .which developed due to makeup,will i ever get rid of it ?will i ever be able to shrink them to their normal size?

Teresa Stenzel
Teresa Stenzel says:
Jul 25, 2016

Hi Aleisha, What type of makeup are you using? Be sure that the makeup you choose is non-comedogenic, and its better to look for one that is fragrance free. Also be sure to remove your makeup every night and have a twice daily at home agenda to ensure your pores are not clogged and your skin is properly exfoliated, hydrated and protected. This will help your pore size. If you would like more help, email me directly at and we can chat further.

Denise says:
Nov 2, 2016

Will pores ever go away and if they are big already is there a possibility they can expand ?…

    Teresa Stenzel
    Teresa Stenzel says:
    Nov 8, 2016

    Pores can have their appearance minimized with proper facial exfoliation, hydration and cleansing but an enlarged pore will never disappear. You have to have good long term care for your skin type and stick with it. If your skin is clean, hydrated, exfoliated and protected with the Serum and moisturizer for your skin types, your pores will lay flat and appear much smaller.

Dc says:
Feb 17, 2017

I have acne scars. Oily skin and my cheeks look like they have a million tiny pin holes. Please help. I just started using witch hazel toner and astringent. I use proactive cleanse and repair lotion.

Michelle Cerajewski says:
May 16, 2017

I have used bioelements for years best products out there. For the last 6 months I wanted to try something different, with retinol now I have big curators and pits on my skin, I am change back to my bioelements. Best product out there❤️

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