How pollution affects the skin and what to do about it.

We all know that pollution isn’t good for our skin, but how does it damage the skin?

Pollution is in the form of particles in the air. Dust, dirt, soot, fossil fuels (car pollution factory fumes), sulphur dioxide, carbon monoxide are all forms of pollution which can lead to a negative impact on the skin.

Along with climate and UV rays, pollution may be classed as one of the external stressors which we encounter daily. The skin acts as one of our natural defences to the environment.

When pollution comes in contact with the skin it doesn’t just sit on the surface. It can penetrate into the skin by infiltrating through pores and deep into the first layer of the skin. It dehydrates, inflames and disrupts the skin’s barrier distorting collagen which results in wrinkling and ageing. The reactive endpoint of pollutants influences the chemical reactions of the body cells. Inflammation, acne, skin sensitivity and hyperpigmentation may occur.

Studies have been performed in urban and rural areas comparing skin reactions and found that those living in urban areas were exposed to more airborne pollutants and in turn, suffered more age spots and wrinkling. It has also been proven that in high pollutant periods in cities that women experience more acne. Other studies have shown that ageing is increased by 10% in the city environment in comparison to the countryside.

How can we protect the skin?

Use a sulphate, paraben, alcohol and perfume free skincare range.

Cleanse – a twice-daily wash in the morning and at night. Not only to remove makeup but to clean off the toxins that the environment subjects the skin to. Ensure they are natural and free from nasties like parabens and alcohol that won’t irritate the skin.

Hydrate- your skin with a moisturiser that will hydrate that lipid barrier. Replenish the skin’s lost moisture with serums and moisturiser.

Protect & Nourish– With antioxidant serums which contain all those essential vitamins, such as A (exfoliates), B (retains moisture), C (an antioxidant &collagen maintenance), D (cell growth and repair) and E ( an antioxidant to the elements). Lactic acid and AHAs to exfoliate and renew skin cells and of course a physical SPF to protect the skin from those harmful UV rays.

Make the most of your skin by using professional treatments. and homecare products.

Contact me for your medical skincare regime bespoke to your skin.

Hope you find this helpful


Skincare by Helen Cleland