Latest research shows that 80% of skin ageing is due to UV rays and pollution. Most of us consider ourselves pretty savvy when it comes to skincare, but do you know how much damage pollution is really doing to your complexion? With London persistently breaching safe limits not only is pollution impacting our health, it has an adverse effect on the skin too. Increased pigmentation, premature ageing, dehydration and inflammation are just a few signs that pollution is having a negative effect. Here’s our guide to pollution proofing your skin.
1. Eat foods rich in antioxidants
Free radicals present in pollution, break down the collagen in our skin thus preventing it from looking plump and radiant. Eating a diet high in anti-oxidant rich foods such as dark leafy vegetables, cranberries, blueberries, pecans and walnuts – can help nourish the skin from the inside out. For lacklustre skin, amp up your facial massage when applying your night cream. This stimulates lymph glands and expels toxins. Better yet, indulge in a blissful facial (yes, of course we’ve got just the one) and ask your therapist to add a vitamin C booster to counteract urban skin aggressors.
2. Avoid congestion areas and cleanse quickly
Pollution particles can be 20x smaller than the human pore and traffic pollution has emerged as the single most toxic element to the skin. Dodge it, by taking a “low pollution” route to work. Innovative apps such as City Air can help you plan your journey in the most pollution-free way possible. At the end of the day, limit damage by not allowing pollution particles to sit on the skin for any longer than necessary. Don’t wait until its time for bed, thoroughly cleanse skin as soon as you get in.
3. Use sunscreen all year long
You’re probably already using it when it’s sunny, but here’s another reason to slather sunscreen on whatever the weather: Pollution weakens the skin’s natural barrier increasing the likelihood of skin pigmentation. Our favourite product to “city-shield” your skin is Khiel’s Ultra Light Daily Defence, £35 and if you’re browsing for others, remember to look for SPF formulas that contain antioxidants which further boost the cream’s pollution-fighting powers.
Your Pollution Proof Skincare Routine
Here are our top pollution-busting products that literally breathe fresh air into skin – because let’s face it – it’s all about the glow!
- Jump start the skin with a cleanser bursting with peptides and barrier boosting collagen such as Balance Me’s Collagen Boost Restore, £18.
- Tone with a spritz of Grown Alchemist Antioxidant Detox Serum, £25.35 (tip: also peps up tired eyes).
- Next, apply your serum of choice or try Skin Ceuticals Triple Lipid Restore, £123. It’s the ultimate in leaving skin feeling soothed and cosseted (Cosseted Meaning: care for and protect in an overindulgent way).
- Finally top off with a high SPF day cream such as Khiel’s Ultra Light Daily Defence, £35. It’s oil free and suitable for even the most sensitive of skins.
Give your skin a healthy boost with one of our blissful at-home facials. Treatments start at £43 and our Sparistas only use premium brands such as Comfort Zone and NuSkin. They arrive with full expert kits and tailor the treatments to your skin type and condition.