In the global industrial environment in which we live, air quality is not at a premium. There is little on an individual level we can do about it and it's effects go deeper than we think. Skin deep.
A lot of people don't realize how profoundly pollution affects our skin because the results can be slow to materialize. Only with time can the effects become visible and by then they are too late to reverse. Collagen breaks down and organ toxins build up resulting in DNA damage and cancer, and the particle matter that causes asthma and vascular disease, are just a few. It's quite grim.
Thankfully, there are some products on the market that specifically target the effects of pollution in an attempt to prevent permanent damage to the skin. The skin is the largest organ, after all, so it makes sense to apply protective products to arrest the free-radicals that cause so much harm. I have listed a few for you here:
Aqua Skin Care PM-Zero Cream Anti-Pollution Moisturizer. This 100% natural, BPA and perfume free moisturizer contains aloe vera juice and olive leaf extract to nourish, hydrate and protect against pollution and the UV rays so notorious for causing premature aging and cancer. Get it at Amazon.com. $60.
Clarins Extra-Comfort Anti-Pollution Cleansing Cream. A great choice in cleansers, this creamy formulation contains moringa seed, jojoba, mango, and shea butter to strengthen the skin's natural barrier that defends against environmental toxins. This is a new product not yet carried by department stores but you can order it from cosme-de.com. $35.
Clinique Even Better City Block Anti-Pollution SPF40. Another new product that brightens the skin and protects against pollution, sun damage and environmental irritants with it's antioxidant formulation and filter-blocking properties. Not yet in department stores but can be ordered through Amazon.com. $50.
Decleor Hydra Floral Anti-Pollution Hydrating Active Lotion. Another superior product from Decleor Paris, this lotion contains moringa olifeira extract to protect against particle pollution. A combination of cosmetic water and cream becomes an active product to give you continuous hydration. Another specialty product not found in department stores but carried on Amazon.com. $40.
Dr. Renaud Carrot Anti-Pollution Radiance Cream. Nourishing organic carrot extract plus active anti-pollution ingredients fortify the skin's own environmental defense system. Dr. Renaud products can be found at Sephora or online at Amazon.com. $45.
Ren Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist. This hydrating facial mist provides an invisible barrier against environmental pollutants such as cigarette smoke and vehicle emissions that cause oxidative stress on the skin. Regular use may prevent premature aging and reduce the look of fine lines and wrinkles. Find it at Sephora or online. $48.
Thalgo Anti-Pollution Oxygenating Skincare Products. Thalgo is a marine plant-based skin care line made in France. They offer several anti-pollution products now at various price points online so it's best to do your homework before ordering. Their Oxygen 3 Defence Fluid SPF 15 can be found at essentialdayspa.com for $60 and the Oxygen 3 Defence Cream is $67. Check online first for spas in your area that carry Thalgo products.
Of course, you should always be proactive in maintaining the health of your skin. One sure way to achieve this is from within. Eating food that contains important antioxidants such as Vitamins A, C & E is critical to protecting against environmental threats. Cleansing the surface of your skin regularly and well also helps to prevent toxins from getting in, and a good cleansing brush like the Clarisonic can eliminate microscopic dirt beneath the surface. As always, the effort you put into it brings the long-term rewards you will gain in the form of radiant, healthy, youthful-looking skin.