You’ve been religiously applying sunscreen because you know that UV exposure is damaging to our skin. Well done! Now you’re ready to proceed the next level: fighting effects of pollution on your skin.
You may probably have noticed that your skin look duller or feel greasier after spending time outdoors where you’re exposed to vehicles, construction work, and cigarette smoke. That’s not the end of what pollution can do to our skin.
A study done in May 2016 shows that there’s a link between traffic-related air pollution and the appearance of age spots. What this means is that, even if you have been conscientious with sunscreen application, there’s a chance that you’ll still find spots on your skin later, because of pollution. And this is a scary thought, because there’s no escaping from pollution, especially for city-dwellers.
Including products that are designed to pollution-proof your skin may be your best shot at defending it. Here are some products that can help you.
1. Remove makeup with charcoal
Try: Sephora Collection Micellar Cleansing Water – Charcoal
Don’t look down on its fresh, lightweight texture, this micellar cleansing water packs a punch in the makeup removal department, and is able to effectively eliminate all traces of makeup and impurities. On top of this, it is enriched with natural-origin charcoal extract to give your skin further purification benefits. Charcoal is known for its ability to attract pollutants like a magnet, because of its porous surface, so this will certainly help you start your anti-pollution regime on a right note. It retails at SGD9 and is available at Sephora stores and Sephora online store.
2. Cleanse with pure vitamin C
Try: Clinique Fresh Pressed Renewing Powder Cleanser with Pure Vitamin C
This water-activated ultra-fine powder cleanser is made of pure vitamin C to help purify and brighten skin. Packed in 0.5g packets, each packet is intended for single use in order to deliver the freshest, purest form of vitamin C to your skin. You’ll love its gentle formula that leaves skin feeling instantly awakened, and how it looks more refined. They retail at SGD39 for 28 packets (28-day supply).
3. Cleanse with powerful antioxidant
Try: Garnier PureActive Matcha De-tox Pollution & Oil Deep Clean Foam
Matcha is an ingredient that carries a rich content of antioxidant – in fact, while they’re derived from the same plant, because of how matcha is made, it has 100 times more antioxidants than green tea. Used in this detoxifying cleanser, it is able to cleanse skin and rid it of toxins and impurities, and fight harmful effects of free radicals from air pollution. It also promisesto slow down cell degeneration so that skin is smoother and tighter. It retails at SGD5.90, and is available at all leading supermarkets and personal care stores.
4. Tone with vitamin E
Try: Porcelain Soothe Deep Hydrating Lotion
Fortified with antioxidant-rich vitamin E and rose oil, this toning lotion is able to fight against free radicals accumulated from pollution exposure. The lightweight lotion also promises to stimulate regeneration of skin cells, thanks to vitamin B5 and cucumber in the formula. You’ll also love that there are many ways you can use it: as a hydrating lotion after cleansing and before serums, as a spray to pick you up throughout the day, as a setting spray over your makeup, and as a soothing mask when you soak cotton pads with it and rest them over your skin. It retails at SGD69 and is available at Porcelain, The Face Spa (15 Cantonment Rd), Porcelain Aesthetics (#03-13 Orchard Gateway), and the newly opened Porcelain Signatures (#01-02 Tanjong Pagar Center).
5. Moisturise with Sicilian barbary fig
Try: Bottega Verde Splendida First Wrinkles Anti-ageing Face Gel Cream
In a gel texture that’s designed for oily skin, it gives skin a fresh sensation as it also boosts its well-being. The main ingredients are Sicilian barbary fig, which is packed with vitamins and minerals that strengthen your skin’s natural ability to fight the damage of pollution, and Pollushield, an ingredient that has antioxidant properties. Recommended for women above 30 years old, it helps bring radiance back to skin and eliminate the appearance of fatigue. Bottega Verde stores are located at #01-454 (North Wing) Suntec City, #01-56 Punggol Waterway Point, and #01-23 Causeway Point.
6. Moisturise with plant stem cells
Try: The Body Shop Drops of Youth Youth Fresh Emulsion Anti-Pollution SPA20 PA+++
Formulated with three plant stem cells: edelweiss, sea holly and criste marine, this product is able to guard skin against pollution and UV exposure. An anti-ageing solution, this can be used as a daily moisturiser or before your regular moisturiser to help protect your skin against pollution. It retails at SGD49.90, and is available at all The Body Shop stores.
7. Care for eye area with chamomile
Try: MicaBeauty Age-Defying Eye Gel
Don’t neglect your eye area – the delicate area is where first signs of ageing usually manifest. This lightweight eye gel is formulated with soothing chamomile extracts to boost cell recovery and protect skin around the eyes against radicals from polluted environments. MicaBeauty products can be found at their stores at #02-162 VivoCity and #01-13 Chinatown Point.
8. Protect from sun with vitamin E
Try: Kiehl’s Ultra-Light Daily UV Defense SPF 50 PA++++ Sunscreen
This is one of Kiehl’s top-sellers, and we’re not surprised by it. Besides its high coverage which includes shielding skin from harmful long UVA rays, it also has the ability to protect skin from oxidative stress received from environmental aggressors. It is formulated with Rosa Gallica, which can soothe redness and reduce dullness caused by stress aggressors, and vitamin E, which protects skin from free radical damage. Check out this sunscreen in this month, because Kiehl’s is offering it in a limited edition 60ml jumbo format at SGD82. Its regular 30ml tube retails at SGD55.
9. Care for body with physical layer of shield
Try: Biore Intensive White Anti-Pollution Body Care Serum SPF50+ PA+++
You may have used body sunscreens before, but you probably haven’t found one that doesn’t just protect you from UV exposure, but also pollution – until the launch of this new product from Biore. A layer of shield is formed upon application of the lotion so that skin can be kept clean while the product helps to fend off pollutants. On top of these, the Intensive White serum also has vitamin B3 and yuzu orange extracts to provide skin whitening benefits. It has a lightweight texture that absorbs quickly into skin, without leaving any sticky feeling.
Besides the Intensive White serum, Biore has also launched the Extra Moist Anti-Pollution Body Care Serum (with Vitamin E & Collagen) to help hydrate and firm skin. They retail at SGD12.90 each, and are available at selected leading pharmacies.