Our skin is under constant assault. The daily exposure to pollution (exhaust, smog, smoke, free radicals and even extreme climate) causes multiple problems for our skin. Problems like dehydration, wrinkles, fine lines, premature aging, weakened skin, dullness, and sensitivity are all worsened by climate change.
The need for anti-pollution skin care is bigger than ever. Quality skincare harness pollution-fighting ingredients to help combat the toxic effects of climate change. Keep reading to learn the effects of pollution on the skin and which anti-pollution ingredients can help provide protection.
How Pollution Affects the Skin
As we go about our daily lives, there are several things that can damage the skin. These include:
- Sun exposure—this is by far the #1 damaging element
- Environmental pollution
- Harsh weather elements (wind, rain, cold, heat)
- Cigarette smoke
- Exposure to harsh and drying chemicals in personal care products
- Chlorine in swimming pools
Any of these factors can lead to a breakdown in skin cells, which weakens the outer, protective layer, called the “epidermis.” However, together, they can truly wreak havoc on the skin leading to cracked, damaged, discolored skin that is even more vulnerable to attack from bacteria, UV rays, pollution, and more. Not only that, but our skin also becomes less efficient at holding onto hydration and nutrients.
The immune system comes into play here, as well. Just like your body needs nutrients, sleep, and stress relief to maintain a strong immune system, your skin requires the same tools to keep up with repair and protect itself from other damaging elements. The more damaged it is, however, the less able the immune system is able to keep up.
Signs of Skin Damage
The cycle of pollution often shows up in our mirror. Some of the most common signs include:
- Dryness, flakiness, dullness
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Hyperpigmentation, acne scars, sun spots
- Moles and freckles
- Sagging, bagging, loss of elasticity and firmness
- Redness, swelling and inflammation
- Rashes and allergic reactions
- Visible blood vessels
Skin Care Ingredients to Encourage Skin Repair
Take a look in the mirror. If you’re like most of us, you’ll probably see some uneven pigmentation, a few age spots, redness, acne scars, fine lines and wrinkles, and maybe even some sagging.
All of these so-called “flaws” are evidence of damaged skin. Just like a brand new car gradually loses that shiny sheen and becomes etched, dulled, rusted, scratched, and marked, our skin gets worn down by exposure to the sun and environmental elements, as well as age-related changes.
Question: Can we repair any of this damage?
Answer: With the right ingredients from anti-pollution skincare, yes!
Fortunately, research has shown us that certain natural ingredients are stars when it comes to repairing, healing, and reversing skin damage. Here’s a quick glance of some of our favorite pollution-defeating ingredients:
Antioxidants (Vitamin C, A and E)
Antioxidants have so many benefits for the skin. They increase microcirculation, which helps stimulate the skin's self-cleansing, self-healing and self-regenerating ability. They can also reverse some of pollution's side effects by brightening skin and stimulating collagen to keep skin looking and feeling firmer.
Omega 6 and 9 Fatty Acids
Healthy skin starts with a dose of Omega 6 and 9 Fatty Acids. These lovelies restore the skin’s barrier while reducing Transepidermal water loss without breaking a sweat. Our Daily Nutrition Facial Treatment Oil is chock-full of this pollution-protecting goodness.
Niacinamide (Vitamin B3):
Niacinamide lays down the law for pollutants like urban dust, cigarette smoke, and diesel dust. When used topically like in our Daily Pollution Mist, niacinamide can significantly reduce the damage to the skin while also helping the cells recover. Niacinamide is your skin’s body guard against environmental stresses.
Procyanidins and Flavonoids
These are lesser known babes of the skincare world, but don’t underestimate them. Procyanidins and Flavonoids reduce free radical oxidation in skin cells and boost cellular energy. These MVP’s of our Daily Nutrition Facial Treatment Oil are a must-have in your anti-pollution skincare regimen.
Last but certainly not least is R-Lipoic Acid. This pollution-preventing powerhous provides mitochondrial energy to cells aiding in cellular repair. It’s also an essential ingredient to help remove environmental Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) build-up.
Level-Up Your Anti-Pollution Skincare Game
Pollution doesn’t have to stand between you and your skincare goals. By using ingredients like ceramides that boost the body's natural protection from external nasties, you can get your skincare regimen back on track.
Do you suffer from skin damage? Share your story with us.