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What are pores? Pores are just glorified hair follicles, with each one containing its own sebaceous gland, which is what produces oil, and it’s also why they can tend to get clogged or cause breakouts when mixed with dirt and bacteria. Both sebum and sweat are secreted out of pores, so it’s important to have a solid skincare routine when dealing with them. After all, there’s no better feeling than having clean and healthy pores, so learning how to take care of them and your skin properly is key! Unfortunately, pores have a really bad rep, and I’m here to tell you why they aren’t as bad as you think they are and clear out some of the most popular myths all about pores. Let’s go!
Myth #1- Pores Can Open And Close
Nope. Perhaps the biggest lie told to us about pores is that they open and close. Beauty products claim that this product can shrink your pores or that product can tighten them, but this is all marketing...and unfortunately, it works and it’s what many have come to believe! Pores aren’t muscles. Hot water doesn’t open them up any more than cold water closes them. The reason we may feed into this lie is that hot water can give the appearance of your pores getting larger due to the heat loosening up all of the dark spots that are clogging them, or even the heat or steam causing the skin to soften which can make the pores seem more visible. What DOES affect pore size, however, are the oil glands that are more active which can cause the pore to stretch and the surrounding skin to lose its elasticity.
Myth #2- Pore Size Isn’t Genetic
Nope. It actually is. So the next time you find yourself stressing over the size of your pores, just remember to be kind to yourself and tell yourself that it’s okay to have large pores and that sometimes, it’s just out of your control. Also, we are human, supposed to have pores, and don’t have face smoothing filters on us in real life, and that’s okay as well as a good thing!
Myth #3- Those Little Black Dots On Your Nose Are Blackheads
This one even surprised me when researching on the subject! But it’s actually false! Crazy, right? Basically, blackheads are a type of acne. Specifically, they are a hardened little plug of sebum and dead skin cells that are contained within a pore. The reason it looks black and different from a whitehead is that it’s been exposed to air and oxidized, resulting in the darker color. When extracted, a blackhead has a black and thick head with a white or translucent tail. Meanwhile, the teeny little gray dots that you see on your nose or cheeks are likely sebaceous filaments, not blackheads, and when extracted look like fine yellow or white hairs. You can minimize the appearance of these by cleansing regularly, using an oil cleanser to “oil pull” regularly, and sticking to a skincare routine since they will keep coming back due to...well, nature!
Myth #4- You Can Permanently Shrink Your Pores
Nope. See Myth #1.