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  • Writer's pictureMelissa Itwar

I Used a Pore Vacuum on Only One Side of My Face for 4 Weeks - Here’s What Happened

About a year ago, I first came across some video reviews of a nifty little gadget called the Dermasuction. While I dreamed of using this, my bills were tall and my salary small, and I am v frugal (aka cheap).

Eventually, I resorted to a cheaper, since discontinued version on Wish with little expectation, but growing increasingly tired that no combination of bubble masks, sugar scrubs, or any sort of charcoal whatever could help clear the bridge of my nose or under my lip where a perpetual pebbling of whiteheads constantly resided.

When it arrived, given COVID-19 lockdown and all that, I had the insane idea to use it on just one side of my face for however long I could stand to. It ended up being about 4 weeks until I bumped my face into the dresser I moved beside my bed, and gave myself a painful black eye and bruised nose, forcing me to take a brief hiatus.

That said, it more than surpassed my expectations, so I’d say it’s safe to splurge on any version you find over $10 - that’s all mine cost. While I bought this because my hyperpigmented chin could no longer accommodate the daily pimple popping, over the weeks I noticed some amazing bonus benefits that have me recommending pore vacuums to anyone who will listen!

I now use this about twice a week - on both sides of my face lol - and it’s essential to my overall skincare routine.

How My Skin Improved with a Pore Vacuum

Fewer Whiteheads

Like I said, I’ve tried a lot of products for my whiteheads. This one actually worked. I’ve referenced before my lifelong struggle with the smattering of whiteheads under my bottom lip, above my chin, that could be popped daily, without fail. There’s no longer stuff to pop everyday, or even every other day. It’s actually kind of disappointing sometimes - lol jk.

Improved Skin Clarity

Since a pore vacuum sucks the gunk out of your pores, you not only significantly reduce whiteheads, blackheads and pimples, but you also avoid scarring that can happen from popping them with your fingernails or an extractor. I found the right side of my face glowing after just a few tries, and even noticed some lightening in hyperpigmented areas, likely due to amped up exfoliation.

Smoother Makeup Application

After months in quarantine, I was obviously not wearing very much makeup, so this one eluded me for a while. Around week 3, I had a Zoom interview for a film makeup job, and figured if they were going to hire me for makeup, I should at least do my own face to show them I know a thing or two.

I wasn’t looking for a difference in my makeup application, but it was immediately apparent. While the right side of my face was velvety smooth and even, it starkly contrasted with my left side, where my chin was bumpy, forehead grainy, and foundation parked itself along the bumps on my nose. This was perhaps the moment where I became the truest of true fans.

Faded Scars

I have a dog that I allow on my bed, so - don’t judge me - my pillows can often be dirty, and I am lazy. That said, I am not unfamiliar with the occasional cheek cyst that pops 5 times and leaves the most ghastly of scars.

As I used my whitehead vacuum, I noticed a dramatic difference in the breakdown of scars on the one side of my face. It could gently lift dead, scarry skin that I wasn’t able to exfoliate or pick off. You can still see the difference even now that I use the pore vacuum on my whole face. Though both sides have faded, one still has some catching up to do.

Younger-Looking Skin

This is another benefit I wasn’t expecting, or even looking for since I’ve looked about 22 since I was 26. Though my laugh lines may not be prominent, I definitely noticed them filling out, and the area around my eyes looking more plump and less wrinkled compared to the other side of my face. There was an apparent glow - I even did an Instagram story poll! I’m gonna chalk this one up to increased blood circulation and stimulated collagen production due to the suction.

Tips for the Best Results with Your Pore Vacuum:

Don’t get too excited yet. There are some things you should know before you give your brand new pore and whitehead vacuum a go.

Start Slow

I said this the other day - I’d be lying if I said I didn’t give myself a few face hickeys while trying to get the groove of this thing. Mine came with settings for Dry, Neutral, and Oily skin; my greasy self went straight to oily, and realized I’m maybe not that oily - at least not by the manufacturer’s standards. Start with the lowest setting, with the smallest nozzle, and then work your way up to avoid bruising until you figure out what works for you - not that it matters with second-wave lockdown.

Prepare for the Purge

As with a lot of skin-clearing products, there is an initial purge as dirt, oil and inflammation get pulled to the skin’s surface. The first few times you use a pore vacuum, the more stubborn junk may not come out right away, but will come close, causing a breakout or at the very least a few pimples. Use your pore vacuum to suck them dry instead of popping them. And then move on knowing you don’t have a new scar to fade.

Toner is your Friend

You’ll be surprised how much junk actually resides in your pores, and even more surprised the size of junk a pore vacuum will put out. Your pores will likely be dilated, so it’s important to invest in a good toner to help close them back up, so you don’t risk undoing your deep clean.

Lube it Up

If you’re like me, your grease pit face somehow renders dry patches as the weather turns cold, and whiteheads are just a little bit harder to remove. Even though there is great satisfaction in knowing all the crap in the vacuum's reservoir came from your face, it’s ok to cheat in the name of suction - I do. Even if you’re on the shiny side, after regular use, you may find your skin to be producing less oil.

As summer fades, I’ve started massaging in a bit of rosehip seed oil before firing up my bad boy. It helps the nozzle glide across skin effortlessly, which is way gentler on less oily cheekbone areas, and I find it helps whiteheads and blackheads slip out of the skin a lot easier.

Added bonus: rosehip seed oil contains linoleic acid, which is known to be relatively absent from acne prone skin. This makes it a helpful mitigator in protecting your newly opened pores as you inevitably shuffle oil and bacteria around the face through the cleaning process.


This may seem like a given, but I’ve been surprised to find that there are people who actually don’t moisturize (smh).

As much as I find pore vacuums to be a miracle product, it can be easy to get carried away. It sucks up dirt, oil and dead skin, but since it exfoliates, you can also run the risk of being overly abrasive, and mucking around with your skin’s natural moisture barrier. It’s always a good idea to replenish your skin with a good quality moisturizer, rather than leaving your skin to produce excess oil to compensate.

If you still need convincing, here's this: yesterday, I saw someone I've been friends with for almost a decade, who I hadn’t seen since before lockdown. He actually apologized for staring at my skin, saying he couldn't help it because it was so clear and glowy.

Nothing I've ever used before has made such a difference. Pore/whitehead vacuums are my go-to recommendation for any one with problem skin, especially texture issues.

If you want to give one a try, but have concerns, comment below!

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