Shoppers Call This a 'Holy Grail' Mask for Minimizing Pores—We Asked a Derm How It Works

Despite what shoppers believe, no “sorcery” is involved.

kiehls face mask

Reducing the size of your pores isn't a possibility (although common skincare myths would lead you to believe that it is). Genetics play the largest role in determining the size of your pores, and while we can't exactly change what traits we inherit, the right products can help minimize the appearance of congested, clogged pores.

Congestion can make our pores appear larger, says dermatologist Geeta Yadav, MD. "Skincare products simply make pores appear smaller through exfoliation," she adds. "By cleaning the dirt, oil, and other grime out of your pores, they temporarily look smaller." As for a skincare product that makes good on its promise to cleanse and temporarily minimize pores, shoppers swear by Kiehl's Rare EarthDeep Pore Minimizing Cleansing Clay Mask.

"This mask is light, easy to put on, and easy to take off. After using it, I could see a visible difference in my pores. They looked cleaner and less noticeable," a Kiehl's reviewer shared of their experience using the mask.

face mask

To buy: $40;,

Dr. Yadav confirms that others can expect similar results, noting, "The [mask's] formula contains clays like bentonite and kaolin, which are highly absorbent. In addition to soaking up excess sebum, the mask will cling to bacteria, dead skin cells, and other impurities. Once you wash your face, they'll be whisked away along with the mask."

Applied to damp skin, the mask should be allowed to set and dry for ten minutes. Users should then apply warm water to remove the mask from the skin. How often you choose to use the mask comes down to your individual skin type. "I would recommend a maximum usage of three times a week, particularly for oily or acne-prone skin," says Dr. Yadav. "If your skin tends to be dry or sensitive, once a week should be enough to accomplish your skincare goals without irritating your skin."

Called a "holy grail mask" by one Sephora shopper, others confirmed they noticed results in as little as a week. "This mask is truly amazing," a reviewer wrote. "It removes all the gunk and oils within your pores and is super easy to wash off. I have visible pores and blackheads and this mask makes my pores appear smaller and my blackheads are slowly disappearing. My face looks super clean and fresh."

Another Sephora shopper called the clay mask "literal magic." They added, "I literally gasped when I looked at my face after washing the mask off. I have pretty large pores on my cheeks that were barely visible...It's straight up sorcery."

Experience the magic of exfoliation for yourself and pick up the mask from Kiehl's now.

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