Utilising the power of hot water is the easiest and cheapest way to tackle those large pores. The steam will help to 'open' the pores, meaning you can get deep down and start to remove the build-up that makes them even more obvious. Steaming using a simple bowl of hot water will also help your skincare products penetrate deeper and get to work quicker - there's a reason it's a fundamental part of many expensive facials! My facialist always steams the surface of my skin and then squeezes out the dirt by hand; it sounds gross, but it's really effective and refreshes my overall complexion.
Toners enable you to get deep into the pores and remove the oil, dirt and dead skin cells that makes them appear larger. The addition of a retanoid can also help to speed up the natural cell turnover process, ensuring that blockages are minimal and pores appear smaller in the long term. Some toners also include natural exfoliating ingredients that also help remove build-up, making them a one stop shop to fabulous skin. Try something like Pixi's Glow Tonic or Murad's Vitamic C Toner, which also helps to hydrate the skin.
Integrating a gentle exfoliator into your routine two or three times a week can help not only improve the overall surface texture of skin, but prevent a build-up of dead skin cells that can make pores appear enlarged. As the biggest cause of enlarged pores is the gunk that sits on the surface of skin, it's really important to encourage our body's natural exfoliation process and minimise the potential for dead skin cells to sit in those little holes. An exfoliating brush, such as the Magnitone Lucid, can also be a great help.
If all else fails, investing in a hardworking primer is a great way to 'conceal' enlarged pores and ensure a smooth surface. A primer will help to create a barrier between skin and makeup, ensuring a much smoother base, as well as helping to prevent makeup from sitting in pores and drawing attention to them. I can't go a day without a primer (read up on some of my current affordable favourites here) as it's my secret weapon against the inevitable 4pm slip!
Are pores a big issue for you? Do you have any top tips or favourite products that help you minimise their appearance on a daily basis?