There is a growing awareness in the beauty industry that pollution affects not only lungs, but leaves its mark on our skin too. Anti-pollution skincare, usually lotions or creams, are increasingly popular in urban markets. So let’s discuss the effects of pollution and how you can create your own products to fight against it.
Pollution and the Skin
Pollution is typically made up of a range of emissions, including exhaust fumes from vehicles like cars and planes. Factories can be a major source of damaging emissions, and things like aerosol cans sometimes emit surprising amounts of damaging chemicals. Smog, although a type of pollution, is typically formed when sunlight interacts with certain pollutants, and that combination has haunted many cities since the industrial revolution.
This snapshot of pollution and smog is deeply unappealing. Exposing your skin to these chemicals for hours everyday is even less appealing. More and more people are moving into urban environments–over half the world’s population is now living in cities. So let’s fight back against oxidants and other contaminants that encourage the appearance of wrinkles and signs of aging.
Charcoal and Pollution
The first step to fighting pollution is to remove it from the face with a cleanser. It may sound counter-intuitive, but activated charcoal is a great ingredient for cleansing the skin. Its surface area and chemical properties make it excellent at attracting dirt, pollutants, and oils. Because of this it makes an ideal and gentle cleanser, and can be added to a wide range of products.
Antioxidants for Anti-Pollution Skincare
As with so many products to fight the signs of aging, anti-pollution skincare focuses on the benefits of antioxidants. Some usual sources for these antioxidants include beta-carotene, vitamin B3 (a.k.a. niacinamide), vitamin C, and vitamin E. (Check our blog on the top 5 ingredients for anti-aging). You can find these in great natural ingredients, any of which could form the backbone of an anti-pollution line. These include items such as: Berries (including blueberry, cranberry, raspberry, strawberry and blackberry); Apples; Grapeseed; Green Teas; Coffee, and many more.
Creating the Anti-Pollution Line
Start with a powerful cleanser, ideally one with activated charcoal in it. We then recommend incorporating your antioxidant-rich ingredients into a moisturizing cream or lotion that is applied after a serum, before makeup. This way the skin can absorb the nourishment of the serum and use the lotion as added barrier.
Depending on your brand it may make sense to have a complete line of products focused on the urbanite customer. This may mean an antioxidant-heavy line that starts with a strong but gentle cleanser focused on removing pollutants after a day in the city. Follow that with an AHA (alpha hydroxy acid) toner, an antioxidant-rich serum, and then your new lotion or crème.
Or perhaps just adding one pollution-fighting product will be enough to round out your line. Because this is a growing trend in skincare, a well-executed product in this realm may be enough to grab the attention of new customers.
Check out Essentials Equalizer Line as a possible antipollution line for your brand. Just add your favorite toner and you’ll have a complete collection. If you want to consider a night creme, the new Skin Nourishing cream is good for both face and body.