Protecting our skin from air pollution

We’re very conscious of the air we breathe, and we do our best to avoid inhaling  air pollutants as much as possible. Unfortunately, we often forget that our skin; the body’s largest organ, can absorb pollution just as readily as our lungs.

In fact, for every visible particle in the air, there are one million invisible particles. Scarier still is that everyday we walk around in this particle soup of varying quality, becoming coated in it and absorbing it into our bodies via our skin while remaining, for the most part, oblivious.

Inflammaging; age-related inflammation

The results of this absorption can lead to inflammaging; age-related inflammation with visible effects including:

  • Sensitivity/irritation
  • Dehydration
  • Acne/breakouts
  • Uneven skin tone
  • Loss of elasticity
  • Hyper-pigmentation

How do environmental pollutants cause all this? Firstly, they irritate and inflame the skin. This leads to damage to the skin barrier function and then the skin’s ability to self-repair.

Protecting our skin

To protect our skin from pollutants, we need to look at ways to create a barrier as well as remove particle matter that sneaks through and gets absorbed. Unfortunately, regular cleansers and exfoliants, whilst effective in removing larger, visible particles, are not necessarily formulated to detoxify and adsorb surface pollutants.

To address this need, Dermalogica has just launched a new anti-pollution product called Daily Superfoliant. It combats pollutants in the following ways with the following key ingredients:

  • Detoxifies and adsorbs surface pollutants
    • Activated Binchotan Charcoal – ground into microfine particles to resurface the skin and help remove particle matter, as well as excess sebum and other impurities.
  • Anti-adherence complex protects skin
    • Caesalpinia Spinosa (Tara) Fruit Extract and Kappaphycus Alvarezli (Red Algae) Extract – helps preserve the skin’s natural barrier function by forming a non-occlusive molecular mesh – or anti-adherence complex – that inhibits penetrations and adherence of environmental pollutants.
  • Packed full of antioxidants to fight pollutants
    • Niacinamide – a water-soluble form of Vitamin B3 that assists in regulating sebum production, and therefore helps prevent adhesion of pollution particles and pollution inducing signs of ageing. It also scavenges free radicals with its antioxidant properties.
    • Oryza Sativa (RiceBran) Extract – a dual-action physical and chemical exfoliant that loosens and digests dead skin cells. It’s also rich in antioxidant vitamins B and E, and Alpha Lipoic Acid which is known to prevent skin ageing inflammation.


Measure air pollution in your area

Air pollution is measured according to particle matter. Particle Matter (PM) is the microscopic suspension of solid and liquid particles that may carry other pollutants on the surface. PM comes from car exhaust factories, power plants, and even agricultural farming, and acts as a carrier for other pollutants in our environment.

PM is classified according to its size; with the number referring to the measurement or diameter of the particle. For example, PM 10 is a measure for coarse particle matter, PM 2.5 is for fine particle matter.

For a snap shot of air pollution in your area, visit www.skinpollution.com. The site has been developed by Dermalogica in line with the launch of its new pollution combating product; Daily Superfoliant. Product promotion aside, it does contain some pretty cool information with a pollution meter that becomes a little addictive (and competitive if you’re comparing your suburb with the rest of the world).

We’d love to know what you think of the site, and if you’d like to try the new Daily Superfoliant, please visit our team at Omorfia and we’d be more than happy to explain the ingredients in more detail and let you try it for yourself. The product arrives in Omorfia Monday 6th February, 2017.