Asian woman in a yellow sweater smiling straight at the camera.

Here’s a hard truth: you’re pretty much stuck with the pores you were born with. Genetics determines the size of the pores on your face. Oily skin types are also more likely to have bigger pores that release sebum actively. But while you can’t change your pore size, you can make your pores appear smaller or even invisible – especially in the cold. Why do you seem to have smooth skin and rosy cheeks when it’s chilly outside? More importantly, can you achieve this effect if you live in a tropical country?

What the Cold Does to the Pores on Your Face

As the body’s first line of defense against extreme conditions, the skin is one tough organ that helps preserve your core temperature and protect you from pathogens, UV radiation, and other external aggressors. Still, even the most resilient skin would still react to changes in temperature.

For example, constant exposure to hot water can impair the skin barrier and result in . It also damages the skin and increases the risk of inflammation. Hence, is recommended, especially on the face. 

On the other hand, splashing cold water can work like a cold compress, on the skin’s surface and reducing inflammation. This can make your pores appear smaller and your skin smoother. You may also experience a slight flush as the body tries to regulate its temperature.

The same can happen in cold climates, which can cause the skin to sweat less and produce less oil, making the pores on your face appear smaller. However, this effect is short-lived. Your pores will go back to their usual size once your body warms up. It’s also important to note that flushed skin from exposure to the cold is not something you want to prolong anyway, since it can lead to dry, , and chapped skin.

If you’re traveling, adjusting your skincare routine to the is crucial. Use an extra nourishing cleanser like Dove Facial Cleansing Mousse Moisture Care with 40% Active Boost serum and that leaves skin radiant and moisturized for up to 24 hours.

How to Refine Enlarged Pores on Your Face

There’s no way to shrink your pores permanently, but you can reduce their appearance. Since dirt, sebum, and sweat can clog the pores and make them seem bigger, a regular skincare routine is your best bet. If you have oily skin, choose a cleanser with , which is effective at regulating sebum production and getting rid of dead cells that can make your pores look bigger.

Instead of subjecting your skin to harsh temperatures, use products that tackle your skin issue head-on. Ask your dermatologist about like , , and to refine your skin. AHAs exfoliate the skin and target enlarged pores and fine lines. Niacinamide controls oil, improves skin elasticity, and increases hydration. Finally, retinoids promote cell renewal and unclog pores, making them great for acne-prone skin.

Try POND'S Bright Miracle Night Serum, which brightens the skin and refines pores with niasorcinol. It evens out skin tone while you sleep, so you can wake up to a radiant complexion – not unlike the one you have when you're posing with in Japan.

Don’t forget to finish with sunscreen as can deplete your collagen and elastin reserves, resulting in sagging skin and enlarged pores.

You can’t shrink the pores on your face permanently, but with the right skincare routine and a lot of patience, you can refine them and minimize their appearance. Anyway, there’s nothing wrong with having visible pores. Skin looking like real skin is nothing to be shy about.