How to Smooth Over Open Pores

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Don't let prominent pores put the kibosh on your cosmetic contrivances. Large pores stand out when you're rocking a bare face and can draw attention away from your matchless makeup artistry. Blame genetics and the passing of time for your pore size -- but don't forget to take steps to properly conceal and protect pores from damaging irritation, sunlight and oily acne oxidation.

Smooth Skincare

Cleanse your skin every evening and morning to remove all makeup and dirt. Select a creamy cleanser for dry skin and a foaming cleanser for normal skin. If acne-prone, select a cleanser that contains salicylic acid.

Gently wash away your cleanser with lukewarm water and pat your skin dry with a soft washcloth.

Smooth a small amount of pore-refining serum over your skin just after cleansing. Let it soak into the skin.

Moisturize your skin with a lightweight oil-free moisturizer that doesn't make your skin feel too greasy or too dry.

Treat your skin with a microbead facial scrub, chemical exfoliant or cream exfoliant three times per week. Dampen your skin, then work the exfoliant into your pore problem areas in small, circular motions. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry with a soft washcloth.

Apply a clay mask to your forehead, nose and chin one to two times per week. Leave the mask on for 10 to 15 minutes, or as directed, then wipe it away with a damp washcloth.

Apply a retinoid night cream before bed, at least 20 to 30 minutes after cleansing your face.

Drink plenty of water throughout the day to prevent dryness.

Morning Makeup

Wash your face with cleanser before applying makeup. Rinse in lukewarm water and pat dry with a washcloth.

Dip a cotton ball in toner and gently press it against your pore problem areas to lift dirt and tighten skin.

Apply a pea-size amount of silicone-based primer all over your face with your fingers. Let the primer set for 5 to 10 minutes to fill in your pores and create a smooth canvas.

Apply a cream-based foundation with an SPF of 30, using a foundation brush or sponge applicator. Blend the foundation into the neck with downward strokes.

Dust the foundation with a powder brush dipped into loose translucent powder.