Is it Possible to Protect Your Skin from Pollution?
In today’s highly industrial world, it seems like we have every skincare innovation we could desire at our fingertips. From scar-erasing, skin-tightening lasers to quick-acting injectables, the continuous development of technology does wonders for both the beauty industry and our respective self-care journeys. However, this fast-paced evolution has inevitably contributed to another issue well worth our attention: pollution.
According to the World Health Organization, air pollution is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. 99% of the global population breathes air that surpasses the WHO guideline limits on air quality. Air pollution kills up to seven million people every year: 4.2 million deaths occur due to outdoor pollution, while 3.8 million result from indoor air pollution like exposure to fuels and smoke from dirty cookware. Add in the frequency of forest fires and the smog that follow them, and we’ve got a pretty frightening combination.
While we may not be conscious of it, pollution is all around us — a silent yet menacing fixture of our modern-day lives. Stick with us at Vine Vera as we explain how you can defend yourself from skin pollution.
Why Worry About Skin Pollution?
We know pollution is a concern, but how exactly does it affect the skin? Before tackling how to solve the issue of skin pollution, we must first understand how pollution affects the skin in the first place.
First, there is ozone. This is a gas formed by the combination of UV light and mono-nitrogen oxides. While ozone in the stratosphere has cancer-fighting properties due to its ability to absorb harmful UV rays, the same cannot be said of the ozone we are exposed to on the ground.
Ozone damages the skin by depleting the lipids that bind cells and make up our skin’s protective barrier. This causes inflammation and reduces the skin’s natural protection. Case in point: a 2011 study conducted in China showed a link between high ozone pollution and uptake in hives, contact dermatitis, and eczema cases.
Nitrogen oxide (NO2) is another environmental pollutant. Generated from combustion exhaust, NO2 exists around us in abundance. A 2016 study reported a connection between the presence of NO2 and the formation of blemishes on subjects’ cheeks, based on two populations: one in Germany and another in China.
Besides exhaust gases and ground-level ozone that results from smog, other causes of skin pollution include:
- Phthalates and other production byproducts
- Particulate matter or harmful particles carried in the air
- Cigarette smoke
All of these chip away at skin health, making us susceptible to both immediate and long-term damage. Considering most people’s inadvertent exposure to these pollutants, your skin may already be suffering from their harmful effects.
Here are some of the common consequences that follow prolonged skin pollution:
- Skin dullness
- Enlarged pores
- Visible signs of aging, such as wrinkles and fine lines
- Stressed-out skin
Tips to Counter Skin Pollution
With the threat of pollution lingering all around us, how exactly can we protect ourselves and our skin? Here are Vine Vera’s favorite ways to lessen the damage that skin pollution can cause to your appearance:
Cleanse Twice Daily with a Good Cleanser
Have you ever tried wiping your face with a tissue after taking a trip downtown? If you live in a highly industrialized area, chances are that you will find a little dust or dirt settled on your skin.
The air carries small particles that attach themselves to the skin. These are called particulate matter. While particulate matter does not immediately wreak havoc on the skin, if you do not make a habit of properly cleansing it off, it can penetrate the pores and damage the skin over time.
The key to fighting skin pollution and lifting away particulate matter effectively is choosing a good cleanser. While the definition of a “good” cleanser is relative, it is key to find one that can properly remove dirt and grime from the face and neck without stripping the skin of its necessary oils. We would recommend our Resveratrol Vitamin C Cleanser for a powerful cleanse along with an infusion of superstar ingredients.
Some see exfoliation as a cleansing step, while others consider it as a way to bring about a clearer, brighter appearance. Here at Vine Vera, we value and honor both definitions.
Exfoliation helps the skin by effectively detaching dead cells from the rest of our skin. This not only unveils a more radiant appearance: it ensures that the skin gets a deeper, more effective cleanse, too. Exfoliation can remove micropollutants that settle in the skin, picking up whatever your cleanser may have missed.
Need a new exfoliant? We’ll be discussing this in more detail further on, but you can always click over now to see the exfoliating products available from Vine Vera.
Keep Your Skin Barrier in Check
Like the planet we live on, the skin is made up of several layers. The outermost layer, otherwise known as the stratum corneum, is often referred to as the skin barrier because of the purpose it serves. Made up of keratin, fatty acids, ceramides, and lipids, the skin’s outer layer protects the deeper, more vulnerable layers therein.
The skin barrier may be thin, but it is mighty and versatile. It simultaneously prevents necessary moisture from escaping, while stopping environmental threats from penetrating the skin. This not only helps our skin look good but quite literally keeps us alive. Without a properly functioning skin barrier, pathogens and toxins could reap damage within our bodies.
There are a few telltale symptoms that can clue you in on your barrier condition. If your skin barrier is compromised, you may experience the following:
- Rough and flaky
- Skin discoloration
- Chronic acne
Being selective with your skincare products can help you maintain the feel of healthy skin. Ingredients like Glycerin, Hyaluronic Acid, or Lactic Acid are great additions to a skincare routine as they are humectants. This means that they help attract and pull water into the skin. Furthermore, moisturizing daily is a must, as moisturizers help trap water in the skin barrier so that the skin can stay plump. Keep scrolling as we’ll soon be sharing the Vine Vera products that will give you all of these ingredients and more!
Protect with Antioxidants
Another way to combat skin pollution is by giving your skin ample antioxidants. While sunscreen is great at blocking out UV damage, it cannot do the same for pollution. To keep pollutants out of the skin, you must enlist the help of protective antioxidants. Often found in vitamins, plants, or fruit extracts, antioxidants neutralize free radicals that can cause long-term damage to the skin.
Some popular antioxidants found in skincare include vitamins A, C, and E, as well as niacinamide.
Studies have also shown that Resveratrol, Vine Vera’s signature ingredient, is another potent antioxidant. Derived from the skin and seed of red grapes, prolonged use of Resveratrol can also combat the appearance of wrinkles, fine lines, and other signs of photoaging.
You’ll find resveratrol in every single one of Vine Vera’s products.
Keep Your Skin Safe from the Outside
Apart from skincare, there are a few things that you can do to keep your skin safe from the threat of pollution. One key tip is to avoid smoking.
Subjecting yourself to a pollutant like a cigarette smoke will only speed up the effects of skin pollution. When you smoke, your skin’s blood vessels narrow. This can hamper blood circulation and deprive your skin of the oxygen and nutrients that it needs. This fast-tracks the emergence of wrinkles and fine lines. Furthermore, smoking chips away at fibers like collagen and elastin, which keep the skin plump and youthful.
Another timely tip: wear a mask. Most cities in the world suffer from poor air quality, but shielding the face from the outside world can help stop breakouts in their tracks. Masks, if kept on throughout your entire time outside, can act as barriers against particulate matter and other micropollutants.
An Anti Skin Pollution Regimen
Double up on your defense against skin pollution with this simple, four-step Vine Vera regimen:
Cleanse Those Surface Pollutants Away
Start by cleansing with Vine Vera’s Resveratrol Moscato Sensitive Skin Cleanser. With a light, non-greasy gel texture, this cleanser is formulated to gently cleanse all skin types without triggering irritation. Despite its delicate texture, this product contains a blend of rich plant extracts. Among them is Olive Fruit Oil, which contains fatty acids that are beneficial for those suffering from the feeling of dryness.
Keep the skin feeling refreshed and free of pollutants by using the Resveratrol Moscato Sensitive Skin Cleanser twice a day. Apply a coin-sized amount of product to damp skin, massaging in circular motions to form a rich lather. Rinse off with cool water and follow up with the rest of your skincare routine.
Deep Clean with an Exfoliant
Try the Resveratrol Vitamin C Peeling once a week. Non-abrasive and potently formulated, this exfoliant dislodges dead cells and dirt from the skin’s nooks, crannies, and crevices. It contains two skin-loving vitamins: Vitamins C and E.
To use, apply a quarter-sized amount of product to the palm of your hand. Massage into dry skin in circular motions, taking care to avoid the delicate eye area. Rinse off with cool water. Repeat this process once a week for optimal results.
A Dose of Antioxidants
For a boost of ingredients that’ll keep you feeling safe from skin pollution, consider adding the Resveratrol Chianti Revival Serum to your regular rotation. Like the rest of the products in this routine, this serum contains antioxidants, such as:
- Green Tea Leaf Extract
- Vitamin C
- Kojic Acid
- Tocopheryl Acetate
After cleansing, apply a generous amount of the Resveratrol Chianti Revival Serum to your face and neck. Pat the product into your skin until fully absorbed.
Leave Your Skin Feeling Protected
Lastly, finish up your anti-pollution regimen with a moisturizer. Our pick is Vine Vera’s luxurious Resveratrol Pinot Noir Longevity Cream. Enriched with Soybean Oil, Olive Fruit Oil, and Carrageenan Extract, this moisturizer will leave your skin feeling plump and protected.
Other standout ingredients in this cream include:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
- Sage Extract
- Para cress Extract
- Sugar Maple Extract
To include the Resveratrol Pinot Noir Longevity Cream in your routine, simply pick up a small amount of product with a clean fingertip or a skincare spatula after finishing all your other steps. Massage it into the skin carefully until fully absorbed. Rich yet non-greasy, this moisturizer can be used both in the mornings and evenings.
Exposing our skin to the pollutants around us is inevitable. However, there are a few ways that you can adjust your lifestyle and beauty regimen to prevent the worst effects of skin pollution from taking root. Start your journey towards safer and healthier-looking skin with Vine Vera.