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What Causes Big Pores on the Face?

Pores are small openings that cover all of the skin on your body. Each hair follicle is surrounded by a tiny pore, which functions to allow sweat to pass, keeping you cool. Sometimes the pores on your face can appear enlarged. While many factors that lead to enlarged pores are out of your control, including genetics and aging, some conditions that cause big pores can be combated with a good skin care regimen or a trip to a dermatologist.


According to skin experts at the Renaissance Medical Spa in Indiana, your genes are the greatest determining factor in your pore size. People with large pores on their faces often have family members with large pores. If your skin is very oily, those oils can cause the pores on your face to look larger because the oils tend to thicken your skin. Many people inherit thick, oily skin, which causes their pores to appear enlarged.


Your age is another determining factor when it comes to pore size. As you grow older, your skin loses its elasticity, which causes your skin to stretch and sag, making the pores on your face appear larger. According to the DocShop dermatology website, your skin also thickens as you age, which causes miniscule skin cells to gather around your pores, making your pores look bigger.

Sun Damage

Years of sun exposure can make the pores on your face appear larger. Sun damage can actually thicken your skin, which leads to bigger pores. Prolonged sun exposure over time can also sap collagen, elastin and water from your skin, which causes the tissue beneath your skin to shrink and pull at the edges of your pores, making them sag and look bigger.


According to dermatologist Audrey Kunin on the Derma Doctor website, blackheads, acne infections resulting from pores clogged with sebum often lead to large pores. This trapped oil oxidizes and causes black spots on your skin’s surface. Blackheads can make your pores look larger by drawing attention to them, or they can actually increase pore size by expanding the area of your pores.

Clogged Pores

An excess amount of skin oils and dead skin cells can gather in your pores, causing pores to appear larger than usual. Kunin recommends exfoliation and good hygiene to remove oil and dead skin from your face and keep your pores from appearing larger than they really are. By preventing clogged pores, you will also prevent blackheads, further helping to keep the pores on your face from looking bigger over time.