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Pores can get clogged with excess dirt and oil, making them appear larger and causing breakouts. However, pore refining products and techniques to cleanse the pores reduce the likelihood the pores will get clogged and enlarged.

The Pores and Refining

The pores on your skin are openings for sebaceous oil glands. Dead skin cells, dirt and oil can clog the pores and make them appear larger, which is why it is important to keep the skin clean. Refining the pores is the process of removing this excess dirt, oil and dead skin cells and cleansing the pore, ridding them of excess oil and impurities.

Skin Products

The pores are refined, or purged of impurities, with a variety of skin products. Many products on the market today help cleanse the pores, thus reducing excess pore-clogging oil on the face and temporarily reducing the size of the pores. Some facial masks, cleansers, toners, serums and lotions include pore-refining ingredients such as alpha and beta hydroxy acids and vitamin A, which exfoliate the skin and cleanse the pores of impurities.


Aside from a consistent skin care routine, certain procedures, often performed by a dermatologist, help refine the pores. Microdermabrasion loosens dead skin cells that clog the pores, exfoliating the skin and reducing pore size. Chemical peels penetrate the pores and remove dead skin as well, allowing for new skin cells to form. Facial steams open the pores, loosening dirt and excess oil so it can be whisked away by a cleanser.