Thursday, January 31, 2008

Pore Perfection

Our skin is made up of zillions of pores. They allow our skin to breath, but they also get clogged with all sorts of ooky stuff that leads to breakouts and blackheads. Some of us may also complain about the size of our pores, since we think that perfect skin comes from pore-less skin. While it's impossible to airbrush or photoshop our skin each day, there are a few things we can do to minimize the appearance of our pores and improve the look of our skin. Here are some things to try:
  • Exfoliate your skin regularly. Use a cleanser with 1% or less of salicylic acid--also called beta hydroxy acid or BHA or something containing less than 5% of lactic glycolic acid--also referred to as alpha hydroxy acids or AHAs. Both of these ingredients stimulate cell turnover and keep pores clean while reducing the amount of oil. Oil-free, clean pores will look smaller and will be much happier than clogged pores!
  • Use an oil-free moisturizer. Again, look for BHAs or AHAs in your products. Also look for products with Vitamin C and retinol, which will firm up your skin and make it look and feel better.
  • Don't forget your sunscreen. Do I really need to remind you about this? No matter where you live or what time of year it is...even if it's going to be an overcast day....be sure to use a sunscreen on your face and neck.
  • Try an at-home mask or peel...again, you need to find products containing BHAs or AHAs, or even NDGAs (which is short for Nordihydroguaiaretic acid...a powerful antioxidant that can prevent blackheads)
There are a lot of pore minimizing products on the market and at all different price points. The key to reducing the size of your pores is to use such products consistently. The products only last as long as you use them!

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