You can’t es­cape it, but you can fight back – here’s how to pol­lu­tion-proof your skin

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Stellar - - Beauty -

We know pol­lu­tion is harm­ful to our health, but we’re only now learn­ing how it dam­ages our com­plex­ions, too. “In big cities, over 80 per cent of peo­ple are ex­posed to air pol­lu­tion lev­els – [from] air con­di­tion­ing and road and air traf­fic – that ex­ceed lim­its set by the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion,” says Tril­ogy’s in-house beauty ex­pert Corinne Mor­ley. “And as much as 70 per cent of age­ing is be­lieved to be caused through over-ex­po­sure to UV light and in­door and out­door air pol­lu­tion.”

All th­ese pol­lu­tants de­prive skin cells of oxy­gen and en­cour­age the for­ma­tion of free rad­i­cals, which are re­spon­si­ble for col­la­gen and elastin fi­bre degra­da­tion, and in­creased sen­si­tiv­ity and dull­ness. So a strong skin bar­rier is your first line of de­fence. As Mor­ley points out, “Sen­si­tive, stressed and de­hy­drated skin has a weak­ened skin bar­rier, which al­lows mois­ture to es­cape and pol­lu­tants in.”

An­tiox­i­dants are also im­por­tant, as they bind to free rad­i­cals and pre­vent them from at­tach­ing to healthy skin cells. Ap­ply a serum or oil be­fore head­ing out in the morn­ing, and re­mem­ber the ba­sics: al­ways cleanse at night, even if you’re not wear­ing make-up and, adds Mor­ley, “never leave the house with­out sun­screen.”

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