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What are Clogged Pores And How to Manage Them

6 mins

Andela Patrnogic

Clogged pores are a result of sebum accumulation in your pores. Here's what you can do to eliminate clogged pores without damaging your skin.

Clogged pores are extremely common in the modern world, and so is the practice of squeezing them. 

There is an odd satisfaction to the process of squeezing clogged pores and getting rid of the sebum underneath. However, dermatologists agree that it is not a safe practice, especially when done without medical supervision.

Today we will discuss what are clogged pores and safe methods to deal with them.

Table of contents:

  • What are clogged pores and what causes this condition?
  • Oily skin
  • Exfoliating too much
  • Dead skin cells
  • Using harmful skincare products
  • How to manage clogged pores?
  • Eat skin-friendly food
  • Physical exercise
  • Take care of your mind

What are clogged pores and what causes this condition?

The human skin has millions of tiny holes that we call pores. Pores are an essential component of the skin. These small holes let your skin breathe, that is, releasing oils and sweat. 

Now that might lead to the deduction that pores need to be unclogged to be able to function. If they are clogged, how will the sweat and oil pass?

Clogged pores suffocate your skin by not letting it breathe. When oil and sweat cannot pass smoothly, they accumulate at the opening of the pores. Over time, it becomes to gooey sebum that we take satisfaction in extracting. 

clogged pores, acne

But why do pores clog all of a sudden? 

The fact is that pores do not become clogged overnight. It is usually a result of months of inadequate or no skincare. If you don't put effort into keeping your pores unclogged, they will eventually start clogging. 

However, not everyone will suffer from clogged pores; people with oily skin are much more likely to get it. Although, people with extremely dry skin can also suffer from clogged pores. In many cases, those with genetically healthy skin may never face this problem. 

Here are a few common reasons behind clogged pores:

Oily skin

Pores get clogged due to a combination of sebum and dead skin. If your skin produces too much sebum, you are much more likely to suffer from clogged pores. 

Oily skin can have many factors to it. If your eating habits are not healthy, it is very easy to get oily skin. Too much oil, sugar, and fats will accelerate sebum production and make your skin very oily. 

On the other hand, some people are born with oily skin. Their skin would remain oily even if they follow a healthy diet and take care of their skin. 

The only thing that can help in such scenarios is specialized skincare products. Using an Aloe Vera or Apple Cider Vinegar-based facewash will help you maintain oily skin even if you are born with it. 

aloe vera face wash, refreshing face wash

Oily skin can also be a result of using skincare products that clog your pores. When buying moisturizers and creams, look for phrases like Does not clog pores, Noncomedogenic in the bottles. These products ensure that your pores are not clogged due to the products. 

Exfoliating too much

Exfoliation is very important to keep your pores free. However, you can do it too much very easily. Once you scrub your face too much, it gets rid of all its natural oils. 

To compensate for the loss, the skin starts producing more sebum. Then you scrub again and remove everything. Now the skin produces even more sebum. 

This cycle continues for a long time, and before you know it, your skin is releasing an uncontrollable amount of sebum.

However, the act of exfoliating is not the only culprit. Which exfoliator or scrubber you use plays an equally important role. If you use harsh scrubbers with harmful ingredients, it will make your oily skin condition worse. 

You should use something like an Ubtan Face and Body Scrub which is both devoid of harsh chemicals and made with skin-friendly ingredients. The frequency of use should also not be more than 2-3 times a week. 

Regular exfoliation is crucial to get oil-free skin. However, it is very easy to overdo it. As long as you are maintaining the balance, the results will be phenomenal. 

Dead skin cells

As we already said, dead skin cells and sebum work together to clog your pores. While sebum is an issue of oily skin, dead skin cells are more common with dry-skinned people. 

Shedding off skin is a natural biological process. However, the problem is when the rate of shedding goes beyond normal. Over-exfoliation can also lead your skin to shed more dead skin cells. 

Over-exfoliation can lead to

But you need to regularly remove dead skin cells with the help of a scrubber. When the dead skin cells combine with sebum, they become a thick, gooey substance that clogs the pores. When you squeeze the pores, this fluid comes out.

Using a good face wash and moisturizer can keep dead skin cells at bay. Always ensure that the products you are using are not allergens and do not irritate your skin.

Using harmful skincare products

Harsh and harmful chemicals do more harm than good to your skin. If your face wash is nothing but soap, it will dry your skin in no time. 

When you use petroleum jelly and mineral oil as moisturizers, they will clog your skin very quickly. It is important to use natural ingredients that do not harm the skin in any way. 

Think of ingredients like aloe vera, strawberry, activated charcoal, and other natural substances. These products do not harm you and give you soft, supple skin without any clogged pores.

strawberry and benefits for skin

You should avoid the known harmful ingredients at all costs - SLS, parabens, artificial fragrances, artificial colors, and so on. Doing these simple things can help your pores remain free and unclogged. 

How to manage clogged pores?

Managing clogged pores is often over hyped. When you understand the basics, it does not take a lot to keep your pores in check. 

There are three parts to removing clogged pores. First, you need to take care of your health, be it eating well or exercising. 

Secondly, you must use the right skincare products. Using the wrong products is like deliberately applying poison to your skin. 

In the end, you should follow some good skincare practices. Simple things like removing makeup before bed can go a long way to make your skin healthier. 

With these simple steps, you can easily get rid of clogged pores.

Do not squeeze your pores

We understand the temptation to squeeze pores and release the built in sebum. It feels good, and improves the appearance of the skin for a short time. In the long term, however, you are doing more harm than good. 

When you are squeezing your pores, it is exposing your skin to harmful bacteria and germs on your hands. It can further exacerbate the problem. Apart from that, squeezing pores irritates your skin and can cause it to swell over time. 

Using a gentle cleanser

As we already mentioned, wrong skincare products can ruin your skin. Within it, perhaps the most important part is your facewash. 

gentle cleanser for skin, how to get rid of clogged pores

We use facewashes every day, often more than once in a day. If your facewash is not helping in unclogging the pores, you need to replace it immediately. Chances are, it is further damaging your skin.

When choosing a facewash, go for something with an exfoliating brush. It helps in gently removing the sebum and dead skin cells without stripping your skin off its natural oils. 

Exfoliate your skin regularly

The problem with exfoliation is that you can easily overdo it. It is extremely satisfying to scrub your face and body, and people tend to keep doing it for pleasure. 

In turn, that can mess up how your skin releases oil and sebum. Once you have triggered overproduction of sebum, getting rid of it can become very difficult. 

exfoliating skin regularly

To remain safe, it is best to avoid exfoliators with harsh substances. Opt out of physical exfoliators as far as you can. 

Always stick to natural ingredients and make sure none of the ingredients irritate your skin. 

Medical treatment

There are a range of medical treatment for dealing with clogged pores, but you should only treat them as a last resort. In most cases, natural solutions are more than enough to deal with clogged pores. 

However, few exceptional cases require medical attention. Going through these procedures often have side effects, and you should not want to go through them.

Extractions, skin peels, microdermabrasion, and hyaluronic acid treatment are some of the most common medical treatments for clogged pores. 

medical treatment of clogged pores

Always consult a dermatologist before deciding on any of these options. There is often a trade-off involved and you should be aware of it. 

Taking care of your body

We often underestimate how important a role our physical and mental health plays in our skin health. If you are healthy from the inside, it will reflect on the skin. Similarly, you cannot have good skin without being healthy and fit overall. 

Some of the general well-being principles are also applicable to dealing with clogged pores. For example, what you eat regulates your hormones to a great extent. In turn, your hormones regulate sebum production. There is a deep and intricate connection between your overall health and skin health. 

Eat skin-friendly food

Some food items are not good for our skin, and we are often aware of it. For some people, dairy might be the enemy. For others, it might be something as unsuspecting as carbonated drinks. If you know what irritates your skin, avoid it all costs. 

A standard balanced diet is good for the skin as well. If you are eating a lot of green vegetables with healthy fats and protein, you would have great skin. Swap simple carbs for complex carbs, and the results will reflect on your skin over time. 

Physical exercise

We cannot overstate the importance of physical exercise for the skin. If you work out regularly, you will have much healthier skin. Much of it is associated with sweating. When you sweat, your pores open up and release the built up accumulation. It is the most organic way to get rid of sebum and dead skin cell build up.

physical exercise and skin care

Exercising also improves circulation of blood in your body. Many skin problems are a direct consequence of restricted blood flow. If you work out regularly, you will have much better circulation of blood. 

When exercising, remember to keep your goals attainable. You should for consistency and not quick results. Take small steps every day until you make it a habit.

Take care of your mind

Stress, depression, and mental turmoil can affect skin negatively. Without going into the nitty gritty of the science behind it, we can understand that is due to hormone release. 

take care of your mind

All hormone release is triggered by the mind, and your emotions dictate how your mind works. Once you take care of your mental health, the benefits will reflect on your skin as well. 

Simply being aware of your mental health is the first step. You can achieve it through meditation, self inspection, and reflection. You can also use professional help to amplify the benefits. 

We hope this guide will help you understand what are clogged pores and how you can deal with them. 

With these simple steps and practices, you can effectively manage clogged pores. The most important thing is to be disciplined with the practices. If you put in consistent effort, clogged pores will no longer be an issue for you.

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