What is going on with the skin on my nose?
August 8, 2016 10:19 AM   Subscribe

I am a 37yo man and have good skin. I don't have acne or spots. For some reason my nose is different. It always seems shiny and the pores are visible. It is almost like my nose doesn't match the rest of the skin on my face. It is like this not matter what. If I wash it well with soap and water or just water and try to not fuss with it too much. Any idea how I can remedy this? Thank you in advance
posted by kbbbo to Health & Fitness (16 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
Do you mean like sebaceous filaments?
posted by mkb at 10:27 AM on August 8, 2016 [3 favorites]

Using Paula's Choice BHA liquid made my weird nose skin look a lot better. It's not quite as shiny now and the pores are less noticable.
posted by ilovewinter at 10:36 AM on August 8, 2016 [4 favorites]

Try a round of Biore followed by every-other-daily application of some kind of lightly astringent toner, like witch hazel or tea tree water.
posted by amnesia and magnets at 10:36 AM on August 8, 2016

Yes Paula's choice BHA will shrink those pores. You can buy a sample for cheap too.

I hesitate with biore strips - they work in the short term but they stretch the skin and leave huge holes behind that fill with dirt easily so if you go that route I'd recommend using the BHA liquid afterwards anyways.
posted by St. Peepsburg at 10:42 AM on August 8, 2016

In marketing-to-women terms, you have 'combination skin.'

Washing it with soap may actually be making it worse, by making your skin think 'something keeps drying this patch of skin out, we better fix it by making more oil!'

Do you use moisturizer on your face? Perversely enough, it can actually help with this problem.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:10 AM on August 8, 2016 [4 favorites]

First, give your nose a swipe with BHA (I like the CosRX brand, because it doesn't have any added ingredients that irritate me), then immediately afterward make a mixture of this powdered clay mask with the goofy name, and equal parts apple cider vinegar (to get it to the correct PH for your skin). Wait till the mask feels hot and weird and dry-ish, and rinse. Then, marvel at your nice clear nose, which will last a few days until you have to do it all over again, or alternatively realize it's all too much hassle. It really works though.
posted by thegreatfleecircus at 11:28 AM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

Go for a "complexion tool," a rad thing I discovered only recently. Clean it with rubbing alcohol before and after each use. Use it to "do extractions" without going overboard and leaving marks or introducing more bacteria. What you do is you run the flat part, and/or the edge of the flat part, over the area that has clogged pores.


It is sold in larger drugstores where the tweezers and nail clippers are. A little hard to find (order online?) but worth it.
posted by 8603 at 12:20 PM on August 8, 2016 [2 favorites]

P.S.: I hope for your sake that you've avoided hearing this particular thing, but when people mention a "facial with extractions," that's what they mean, getting the gunk out of your pores by mechanical means. So you can feel confident that you've done all you can do!
posted by 8603 at 12:24 PM on August 8, 2016

It is almost like my nose doesn't match the rest of the skin on my face.

In addition to the combination skin explanations above, I noticed around 35 that the cumulative sun exposure on my schnozz was finally showing. UV damage may contribute to why the pores and skin on your nose look different than the rest of your face.
posted by zippy at 1:09 PM on August 8, 2016

Yeah, I'd echo the above, stop washing with soap (use a gentle cleanser - I like pricey stuff but lots of folks on MeFi like Cetaphil), and use a BHA toner like Paula's Choice or CosRx every day or two to keep those pores happy.
posted by matildaben at 1:40 PM on August 8, 2016

You can put Cetaphil on your nose and then just wipe it off with a towel. Cleans the skin and leaves it non-shiny.
posted by w0mbat at 2:44 PM on August 8, 2016

I'm wondering if this is phymatous rosacea?
posted by delight at 5:09 PM on August 8, 2016

You're going to think this is crazy, because it's the opposite of what everybody's been told to do about facial grease and shine. But this works for me and lots of other people: I put oil on my face before I go to bed, and then wipe it off with a warm wash cloth. If I don't do this, I'm a greaseball with regard to nose, chin, and forehead. I'm a woman and sometimes have makeup to remove, but I do the oil thing whether my skin needs cleaning or not. My oil of choice is jojoba because it's easy to find and my first choice, olive oil, caused breakouts. Apparently, acne isn't caused by every oil...just whichever ones clog your personal pores.

Some oils have a de-greasing effect, and some just make you shiny even if you wipe them off. You might have to try a few. Also, a lot of oil-free moisturizers contain glycerine, which makes some people super-shiny (though not because of oil production).

You might want to ask your question on MakeupAlly.com, either in the makeup board or the skin care board. The makeup people are more friendly and helpful. Tell them you're a man or don't... they won't care. You have to enter a user name an password in order to post there, but I've never been spammed by them in the 8 years since I joined.

Also in the counter-intuitive department... if you're using soap or other strong cleansers on your nose/face, try just using water. You'll know in a week or two if it's making any difference.
posted by wryly at 7:44 PM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

Don't use Biore strips, it will help in the short-term but make it worse in the long-term

I'm allergic to aspirin, so I can't use 99.9% of all skin care/acne/blackhead products which contain aspirin (salicylic acid) as an active ingredient. Instead I clean my face with witch hazel, combined with a once-a-week exfoliant, which so far has been doing a decent job of managing my terrible skin. That and wearing sunscreen constantly might help.

Mostly though I've just resigned myself to my genetics and having terrible skin.
posted by a strong female character at 8:32 PM on August 8, 2016 [1 favorite]

Get a facial at a reputable spa (someone else mentioned extractions - make sure it includes extractions). Many men are reluctant to get facials, but a good one is more like a medical treatment than frou-frou relaxation. This will immediately make your nose look better, and the esthetician will be able to give you recommendations re. caring for your skin.
posted by beyond_pink at 5:40 AM on August 9, 2016

Also, P.S. (though your skin may vary, of course), at age 39, I try to do as little as possible with my skin. Especially if you have a history of good skin (I don't!), I would just go for the "complexion tool" I mention above and leave it at that. If I put on sunblock, sure, I wash with soap afterwards, but otherwise I just rinse with water and make sure my towels and pillowcases are clean.
posted by 8603 at 10:36 AM on August 11, 2016

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