How To Hide Your Pores With Makeup, According To An Expert


You can’t shrink large pores, but you can make them disappear (temporarily).

If you have large pores, learning how to hide pores with makeup is a total game changer. The size of your pores is mostly based on genetics, so there’s little you can do about that.

However, with some minor adjustments to your skin care routine and a touch of makeup magic, you can make those craters disappear… at least while you’re wearing makeup.

We spoke to Carol Mackie, Senior Artist for M.A.C Cosmetics, to discover how to pick the best makeup for large pores and what techniques we should be using to make them vanish before your eyes.

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Exfoliation is everything

“Choosing skincare that’s not suitable for your skin type is the most common ‘mistake’ that people make,” explains Carol. If you have large pores, you need to use products specifically designed to help to prime and smooth the skin. This will create a smooth base for makeup to glide over and make your pores look smaller. The truth is that making your pores less visible begins long before you start your makeup routine.

Your skin needs a deep clean to remove surface dryness and unclog pores. If your pores are bigger than you’d like, exfoliation is key. A mechanical exfoliator such as a natural sea sponge or a cleansing brush will clean out your pores and smooth your skin before you apply your makeup.

If you have oily skin – most people with large pores do – it’s also a good idea to use a face mask once a week. Look for one that aims to remove impurities and tighten pores.

bh loves: QVS Natural Sea Sponge, FOREO LUNA 2 Oily Skin, L’Occitane Aromachologie Rebalancing Face Mask

Prep your skin

Cleansing and moisturising with the right products can make a big difference to the size of your pores. Preparing your skin by washing your face with a cleanser that’s designed for oily or combination skin types will keep your pores clean and unclogged. After cleansing, always moisturise with a light, hydrating formula. “By not prepping the skin before applying makeup, foundation will sit and eventuate in pores appearing bigger,” says Carol.

Look for a cleanser that will thoroughly clean the skin and remove all traces of oil, dirt and makeup. For your moisturiser, a hydrating gel formula is a lightweight option that’s perfect for oily, acne prone skin types.

bh loves: NIVEA Creme Care Facial Cleansing Wipes, anumi Deep Cleansing Gel, NEUTROGENA ® HYDRO BOOST Water Gel

Primer is your best friend

This is where the real pore vanishing magic happens. A pore minimising primer will work wonders to create a smooth canvas for your foundation. “[Find] a velvety skin-perfecting primer that instantly fills in fine lines and wrinkles and can also be applied under or over the top of foundation to literally create a smoothing filter on the face,” suggests Carol.

With the right primer, you’ll be practically pore-free in seconds!

bh loves: M.A.C Prep + Prime Skin Smoother, jane iredale Smooth Affair Facial Primer & Brightener, Maybelline New York Baby Skin Instant Pore Eraser

Choose the right foundation

After you’ve applied your primer, you’re ready to put on your foundation. But if you want to pull a disappearing act on your pores, using the right formula is crucial. “Selecting the right type of foundation, concealer, and powder can make such a difference,” adds Carol.

Look for a formula that has oil-controlling properties, as it will also minimise the appearance of pores, refine skin and blur imperfections. It’s also important to choose creamy or powder formulas. “Frosted, illuminating products tend to sit in the pores making them appear more open than they actually are,” explains Carol. A creamy foundation with medium to full coverage will give you flawless coverage that covers those pesky pores all day long.

bh loves: MAC Studio Fix Fluid SPF15, Bodyography Every Finish Powder, Clinique Stay-Matte Oil-Free Makeup.

*This article has been updated since its original publication date.

Did you find these tips helpful? How do you hide your pores with makeup?

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Comments 8

  1. I have larger pores on my cheeks, nose and chin; most likely from the ageing process. The only time it’s an issue is if I use a liquid foundation that has a thin consistency or is too shiny – these formulas quickly sink into the larger pores and accentuate them.

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