By Harleen Chatrat
We are all aware of the damage that extreme pollution may do to our respiratory and cardiac health. But let’s not forget that prolonged exposure to pollutants, which enter the superficial and deeper skin layers via transcutaneous and systemic routes, makes our skin one of the principal targets. There are several simple calculators on the internet that may be used to optimise skincare regimens for women and treatments against pollution-related health problems. Thoughts for males now? Not that many, actually. Here is a guide for males who have had a day filled with pollution in the city.
The three most common effects of exposure to pollution are accelerated skin aging, pigmentation, and acne formation. The thumb rule to prevent all this begins with deep cleaning, followed by the incorporation of antioxidants or a good regenerative compound. For deep cleansing, choose a facewash that has compounds like activated charcoal in the ingredient list.
Actives such as charcoal helps pull out dirt from deep in the skin, making them harder working and faster acting. And if you have a product like the Bombay Shaving Company Charcoal Facewash, you have the power of activated bamboo charcoal, which has stronger cleansing capabilities. The product is enhanced with vitamins and antioxidants extracted from papayas, and pomegranate extracts that hydrate while combating aging. Translation – you don’t have to spend too long anti-polluting your face!
After you’ve cleaned your face, consider a resurfacing face exfoliator. This step is great for removing dead skin layers and digging out the smaller molecules of grime debris. Another advantage of exfoliating is that it softens the hair follicles, preparing your skin for a closer and more comfortable shave in the morning.
“With a scaling pollution rate, environmental stressors can cause oxidative stress, skin ageing, pigmentation, and breakouts. To tackle this, a proper skincare routine (cleansing, toning, moisturising) is a must for both men and women.Grooming for men is equally important as they have more active sebaceous glands and open pores.Ingredients containing antioxidants like activated bamboo charcoal, green tea, coffee, acai berry, natural fruit extracts top the list to reverse the oxidative damage, promoting exfoliation and revealing a refreshed and healthy complexion,” says Harleen Chatrath, Dermatologist.
No, drinking tons of water before going to bed isn’t going to do the trick. You need to help your skin regenerate itself and prepare it to fight the free radicals it will be exposed to the following morning. Either choose a face mask that is rehydrating and regenerating at the same time or take a small capsule of an over-the-counter vitamin E, squish it and apply it all over your face. You’ll notice a visible difference in just a few days of consistency with this step.
Did you know men’s skin is more affected by pollution as compared to women’s? This is because men tend to wear less makeup! The makeup acts as a barrier, preventing free radical particles from permeating into the skin. Even if you choose to opt for adding more makeup to your routine, we recommend taking the nightly ritual seriously as well.
(Harleen Chatrath, a Dermatologist)