If there’s anything the past weekend was memorable for, it’s the haunting and daunting smell that we woke up to. The haze is back and we can’t escape it. With it being quite literally, right in our faces, we have to step up our defence to make sure we’re in tip-top shape – whether it’s with our health, or in this case, our skin.
How does the haze affect our skin?
We know that the haze are bad for our skin, but how exactly does it affect it?
First, the haze contains pollutants such as soot, dust, and other impurities. These can irritate our skin and cause itch, rash, and even cause inflammation. This is why you may see redness or even break out when you’re constantly exposed to bad air.
Haze is also a cause of free radical damage, which we know contributes to premature ageing. Living in a city already exposes us to a lot of free radicals and haze just adds to the damage.
And as if we need more free radical attack, did you know that UV rays are stronger when it’s hazy? This is because the smog traps UV rays in the atmosphere, which makes these harmful rays more powerful, causing more harm to our skin.
Now that you know the kind of harm haze can cause our skin, read on for six tips – and products to use! – that can help mitigate the damage.
1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
It’s a centuries-old secret that should be especially maintained through these hazy times. If you think about it, drinking water has long been known to improve your skin condition. But besides keeping your skin at its best, hydrating will make sure a sore throat and nasty toxins in your system are the last things you’ll worry about.
Hydrating your body also helps improve your immune system, which isn’t just important if you don’t want to fall sick, but also helps you fight against inflammation in your skin.
2. Cleanse your skin properly
When you’re out and about in the haze, the most important thing you’ll want to do at the end of the day is to make sure there’s no gunk left on your skin. Cleanse your face thoroughly after going out. If you’re willing to spend a little, look out for cleansers with antioxidant properties.
The Shu Uemura Anti/Oxi+ Pollutant & Dullness Clarifying Cleansing Oil (SGD55 for 150ml) – which has glowing reviews online – is formulated with Korean ginseng and green tea, natural antioxidants, as well as Japanese camellia.
These ingredients keep your skin soft and supple, moisturised, and has anti-inflammatory properties. The oil cleanses your skin of micro-sized pollutants and restores radiance to your face, making it perfect for cities where air pollution (yes, including haze) is a concern.
3. Then cleanse your skin even more
Exfoliating scrubs are good – but don’t overdo it, once or twice a week is enough. You’ll want something that goes beyond the surface of your skin and into your pores for a thorough cleanse.
Try the Skin Inc Oxy-Recharge Bubble Mask (SGD76 for 30ml) is made with the brand’s award-winning smart peel technology. This detox mask bubbles up in order to deep cleanse and re-energise your skin.
The technology lifts away dead, dull skin cells and has a soothing blend of natural antioxidants that aid in ridding the effects of environmental pollution on your front. It’ll leave you with firmer, brighter and healthier skin that you can see and feel.
4. Do not leave home without sunscreen made for the city life
Smog and UV rays are part of city life and are responsible for causing free radical damage.
You should already be using a good sunscreen on a daily basis, but during the haze season, be more conscientious with application; this means applying a good amount of it and to reapply regularly.
P.S. Sunscreens that protect you from blue light are a bonus!
Drunk Elephant’s Umbra Tinte™ Physical Daily Defense SPF 30 (SGD52 for 60ml) is packed with antioxidants that defend your skin from free radicals and environmental aggressors. It’s perfect for sensitive skin since it’s made without chemical screens and silicones, and is infused with non-irritating and non-sensitising ingredients.
You can use the sunscreen daily, plus it doesn’t leave a white cast or any greasiness! Best of all, it offers a glowing tint that suits all skin tones.
You’ll also want to remember your lips, and Fresh’s Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment Sunscreen SPF 15 (SGD36) is perfect for this. While it moisturises and smooths your puckers with a blend of nourishing oils, it also shields it from the nasties we want to avoid.
We can trust the antioxidant-rich formula, which includes vitamins C and E, to protect our pout! Plus, the lippie has a buildable colour – so you can go sheer or bold with it.
5. Pamper your skin
Whether it’s in the day or overnight, you’ll want to make sure your skin stay moisturised and hydrated.
However, be sure to avoid sticky products – moisturisers, serums, as well as any makeup products such as glosses that are sticky. It’ll make a good landing spot for micro-particles and we definitely don’t want that!
A good product to keep by your bedside is the Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Dream Face Cream (SGD89 for 50ml).
The DV team swears by the Fresh Lotus Youth Preserve Dream Face Cream to give supple and baby-soft skin when you wake up. It’s a lightweight antioxidant-rich cream powered by the Super Lotus, that works overnight to repair and strengthen your skin after all the stress it encounters throughout the day.
In the morning your skin is recovered, moisturised and well, fresh! Its soothing scent also sets the tone for a good night’s sleep.
6. Load up on antioxidants, pronto
Make sure you’re fighting free radicals from inside out, too. Incorporate anti-oxidant rich foods into your diet. To get you started, here are some foods that are great: dark chocolate (in moderation, of course), pecans, blueberries, strawberries, goji berries, raspberries, artichokes, dark green vegetables, and fish.
Natural green tea is also a great beverage that you can drink frequently to load up on antioxidant to keep your health and skin in tip-top condition!