Every day, our skin is exposed to the negative impacts of pollution. This can lead to dehydration, a dull complexion and premature aging. Here’s how to shield your skin from the air’s harmful pollutants.
Urban pollution is the first thing that comes to mind when we think of contaminants that can cause our skin harm, and it’s certainly an issue if you live in a large city. But it’s important to remember that smoke, UV rays, central air (cold in the summer, hot in the winter and always harsh on the skin), stress and a lack of sleep can all impact the skin and contribute to the production of free radicals. Free radicals are the molecules produced by the body when it's exposed to sources of stress.
To protect itself against damage, the body produces antioxidants, but sometimes not in large enough quantities to fight the effects of numerous free radicals. When it becomes overwhelmed, the skin produces less collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid, losing its firmness, moisture and resilience as a result. That’s when your complexion starts to look lacklustre and wrinkles begin to appear.
What’s good to know is that free radicals are actually useful to the body, as they contribute to the well-being of our immune system and have a regulating effect on certain genes. However, when they become too numerous, they attack certain molecules and cause cells to stop functioning at their best. This phenomenon is called oxidative stress, which releases even more free radicals into the body and causes premature aging of the skin. That’s why it’s so important to use skin care specifically designed to fight the negative impacts of stress on the skin.
ANTI-POLLUTION PROTECTION FOR YOUR SKIN
The obvious solution to fight premature aging? Protect your skin against external assaults. The first mandatory step, of course, is to thoroughly cleanse your face twice a day. Proper cleansing is especially crucial at night, when neglecting to wash your face means leaving behind all of the impurities it’s been exposed to throughout the day. Always go to bed with a clean face and consider using an exfoliating scrub twice a week for a deeper, more complete clean.
A moisturizer tailored to your skin type will also offer substantial protection. That’s because well-moisturized skin is more resilient against assaults, as it helps shield the skin and prevent toxins from seeping in. Look for products with ingredients such as vitamin C, a popular and potent source of free radical-fighting antioxidants.
Vitamin C plays an essential role in maintaining healthy and younger-looking skin by stimulating the production of collagen, therefore helping cells to better fight the impact of oxidation. Kakadu plum extract is also very rich in vitamin C and boasts antioxidant as well as anti-pollution benefits that help strengthen the skin’s defense mechanisms.
Another ingredient that can protect skin against pollution and fight its negative effects is Canadian red maple extract, an eco-friendly component that improves skin’s resistance, firmness and elasticity while reducing visible signs of skin aging.
HOW TO ADAPT YOUR DAILY ROUTINE TO PROTECT AGAINST URBAN POLLUTION
Here are two multitasking formulas that both contain Canadian red maple extract, protect skin against pollution’s harmful effects and provide anti-aging benefits.
This moisturizer offsets the premature-aging effects of urban pollution and restores the skin’s natural moisture barrier. Use morning and night.
With a formula specifically designed for the delicate skin of the eye-contour area, it reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, brightens skin and reduces the look of puffiness and dark circles.
Protecting your skin against urban pollution — a simple step to take now for a healthier and better-looking future.
CLAUDE LAFRAMBOISE, STYLE EXPERT
An established figure in the fashion and beauty world, Claude Laframboise has over 20 years of experience in the Canadian media industry. He has worked as a fashion stylist and beauty editor for Clin d’œil, the Montreal editor for FASHION Magazine, editorial director for MARIAGE Québec, and held various key roles at LOULOU, among them Editor-in-Chief.
For CW Beggs and Sons, he shares his expertise and passion for skin care. Featuring the latest technologies and ingredients, must-try products and how best to use them, Claude’s tips will help you put your best face forward and contribute to your overall well-being.