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  • Pam Moore

Causes of Enlarged Pores

Generally speaking, there are a handful of factors that may cause pores to appear enlarged. The following are some of the top factors that may alter your recommended aesthetic treatment for patients based on which factor their particular case may fall under:

Genetics: A patient’s genetics often determine their natural pore size. If pores are genetically larger to begin with as compared to the norm, additional factors may coincide with genetics to make them appear even larger. Genetics can also determine activity levels within sebaceous glands, which can impact the appearance of pores on the surface.Hormones: Testosterone plays a key role in skin health, causing increased activity in the sebaceous glands, which leads to increased sebum production and often causing pores to appear larger in males as compared to females.Skin Type: Oily skin produces excess sebum, which can cause the build-up of debris and blockages within pores. Pores may then expand to accommodate the excess blockage, causing them to appear enlarged and more pronounced due to the blackened appearance of oxidized sebum and debris within the pores.Sun Exposure: Cumulative exposure to UV radiation causes collagen and elastin degradation, which leads to increased skin laxity and the appearance of sagging or enlarged pores.Aging Skin: With time, skin’s natural collagen and elastin levels decline, leading to lax skin. Pores then begin to stretch and sag at their edges, leading to an enlarged appearance.

Tips for Talking to Patients About Large Pores and Treatments

To effectively treat for enlarged pores, you will need to know the root cause, which may be different for each patient. The best approach then is to begin with a thorough consultation followed by a customized and comprehensive treatment plan. For patients whose enlarged pores may be a result of more than one factor, a tiered or multi-treatment plan may offer the most effective means to support skin health and shrink pores. However, the first step to ensuring patient satisfaction may be to offer some patients a kind reality check.

Education is key to ensuring overall patient satisfaction and retention. You should understand how treatments may assist in improving aspects of skin health but that signing up for a treatment plan isn’t like waving a magic wand. Ensure patients understand that pores are a normal part of healthy skin and while the right treatment may help to deep-clean pores or reduce their size, you cannot accomplish, nor should you want to achieve “pore-free” skin. This is be a particularly important note to discuss with younger patients who may be so used to seeing smooth, filtered skin on social media that they believe pores are somehow abnormal. While you can offer patients solutions to clean and tighten pores, ensure that their expectations are realistic by underscoring that these treatments may only help pores return to their natural size; you cannot beat genetics here.

If you are experiencing enlarged pores as a result of collagen and elastin degradation—whether that be due to sun exposure or age—Venus Viva™ may offer an ideal aesthetic solution to boost skin elasticity. The most customizable skin resurfacing device in the industry, Venus Viva™ is a fractional radio frequency system that enables the treatment provider to control ablation, coagulation, and resurfacing to improve skin texture. Venus Viva™ skin resurfacing treatments are safe for all skin types


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