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HOW THE ENVIRONMENT CAN AFFECT OUR SKIN AND HOW TO COMBAT IT







The environment you live in plays a significant role in the health and appearance of your skin. From the sun's rays to pollution levels, external factors can influence everything from hydration to sensitivity. Understanding these environmental influences can help you develop a skincare routine that protects your skin and keeps it looking its best.



Sun Damage


Sunlight is essential for vitamin D production, but excessive exposure can have a detrimental effect on your skin. Ultraviolet (UV) rays penetrate the skin's layers, accelerating the ageing process and increasing the risk of sunburn and even skin cancer. Chronic sun exposure can also lead to wrinkles, sunspots, and uneven skin tone.


Combat: Limit direct sunlight, especially during peak hours (10am-4pm). When outdoors, wear protective clothing, a wide-brimmed hat, and SPF 30 or higher sunscreen on all exposed skin. Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more often if sweating or swimming.



Pollution and Irritants


Air pollution, filled with smog, dust, and other pollutants, can irritate the skin, causing dryness, redness, and breakouts. These pollutants can also weaken the skin's natural barrier, making it more susceptible to other environmental factors.


Combat: Consider using a gentle cleanser twice daily to remove pollutants and dirt buildup. Look for products labelled "non-comedogenic," which means they won't clog pores. Opt for skincare products with antioxidants, which can help neutralise pollution's damaging effects.



Climate and Weather


The climate you live in can significantly impact your skin. Hot, humid environments can lead to excessive sweating, causing breakouts and congestion. Conversely, cold, dry climates can make your skin feel tight and dehydrated. Variations in pollen production can trigger allergic reactions such as hay fever, itching, and redness.


Combat: During hot weather, use lightweight, oil-free moisturisers and non-comedogenic sunscreens. Consider blotting your face throughout the day to remove excess sweat. In cold weather, switch to a richer moisturiser to combat dryness. Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid, which helps the skin retain moisture. There is a range of hay fever treatments available to choose from, such as tablets, nasal sprays, and even facial wipes.



Indoor Environment


While you might think you're safe from environmental damage indoors, factors like dry air from heating systems and air conditioning can dehydrate your skin. Additionally, harsh chemicals in cleaning products can irritate the skin.


Combat: Increase humidity in your home with a humidifier, especially during winter. Invest in an air purifier to remove dust and allergens from the air. Wearing gloves or choosing products with natural, gentle ingredients can help reduce the chances of skin irritation. Taking the time to consider what products you’re using and what other options with less harsh ingredients you could use will help to reduce the time it takes for your skin to improve and become healthier. It can also help benefit the environment by reducing the use of harsh chemicals.



Remember


These are general tips and individual experiences may vary. It's important to listen to your skin and adjust your routine accordingly. If you experience any persistent skin concerns, consult a dermatologist for personalised advice. By understanding how the environment affects your skin and taking steps to combat these influences, you can maintain healthy, radiant skin that glows.

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