Steaming DOESN’T open your pores: YouTube star explains the science behind the beauty claim – and it’s all down to the muscles in your skin
- Kate Stewart, of Winchester, debunked the myth of steaming pores to open them
- The science YouTuber explained it is because they lack muscle needed to open
- Advised what beauty fans can actually do to improve their skin’s appearance
A science YouTube star has debunked the myth that steaming skin helps open pores.
Biochemist Katie Stewart, from Winchester, is behind YouTube channel Science with Katie.
In a recent clip she explained many beauty brands and professionals broadcast incorrect information when it comes to the benefits of steaming.
The issue is that pores don’t have muscles and so cannot actually ‘open’ and ‘close’.
A science YouTube star has debunked the myth that steaming skin helps open pores (stock image)
Admitting that the subject is close to her heart Katie, who has 20,000 subscribers, starts the video by saying: ‘Due to some unfortunate genes I have bigger pores than most people.
‘I even went to a dermatologist in my teens who didn’t give me the correct information.’
Katie, who is supporting British Science Week, then goes on to complain about how she’s seen lots of brands and bloggers giving out incorrect information about how to open and clean your pores with steam and cold water.
‘Large pores are a big problem for some and the skin care industry makes billions every year by promising to reduce the size of pores, clean them out or shrink them permanently,’ she says.
Katie Stewart, from Winchester, shares her Science with Katie videos regularly and her new one debunks the beauty myth of opening and closing pores with hot and cold water
What are pores?
Going on to explain what pores are Katie says: ‘Pores are small openings in the skin – so sebum and sweat and are also connected to your hair follicles. Each pore contains a sebaceous gland, which produces a sebum that your skin needs to produce to remain soft and subtle.
‘Pores can be more noticeable on certain parts of your face, like the nose and forehead – your t-zone where your glands are bigger – but the size of them generally is down to your genes and your skin type.
‘Dry skin appears more pore-less and oily skin tends to have more visible pores. For some reason word has spread that you can open these pores by using hot water and close them by using cold water – this has no basis in your skins physiology.’
Katie reveals that pores do not have muscles around the openings to allow them to open and close
The science behind your pores
Katie goes on to explain what our skin and pores are made up of: ‘Pores do not have muscles around the openings to allow them to open and close.
‘Your skin is made of layers of tissue and fat, hair follicles and sweat glands, but no muscle,’ Katie says.
‘Your pores can not open and close because there is no mechanism for that to even happen.
Katie illustrates what our skin is made up of including layers of tissue and fat, hair follicles and sweat glands
How to clean your pores
‘Warm water can soften and loosen any excess sebum,’ explains Katie, ‘and anything else that is in your pore, making it easier to clean it out.’
Plus she admits that there are several products on the market which tighten your pores more than cold water will.
‘Retin A can improve skin texture and the appearance of dark circles as it makes skin cells turn over more rapidly. Because it improves cell turnover it means your pores are less likely to clog.’
Katie finished the video by saying: ‘I couldn’t find where the myth came from – but we do really need to stop skin care companies spreading this false information. The best way to do this is educating them with the facts.’