The Invisible Aggressor Affecting Your Skin

17 January 2020

There is something that impacts our skin’s health greatly yet we cannot see it – air.

According to the U.S. National Institutes of Health, increasing levels of air pollution around the world are causing oxidative stress – an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in our bodies. It is a stress that damages our skin over time. 

While the human body naturally tries to protect you from environmental aggressors, prolonged exposure to high levels of pollutants can negatively affect the surface of the skin.

Elements like cigarette smoke carry other effects, downgrading our air quality. It consists of over 6,000 chemicals shown to increase psoriasis and acne, and of course, serious health issues. To mention another element, Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAHs) which usually result from man-made processes and are found in areas where coal, coke, tar, asphalt and aluminum are produced have been associated with pigmentation of the skin.  

Global in scope, agencies around the world are consistently monitoring this. In 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reported that the air quality for more than 142 million Americans failed to meet National Ambient Air Quality Standards. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 92% of the world’s population lives in non-compliant zones with WHO air quality standards. Toxins like transportation (i.e. vehicle fuel), heating combustion, coal-fueled power plants and waste burning are considered aggravating factors in the production of ambient air pollution. 


Beyond opting for products that will help cleanse your skin of pollutants, there are ways to protect it from the damaging effects of air pollution. According to MD Magazine,a few seamless habits and supplements will help your body and skin fight against environmental stressors. 


H20 and skin-hydrating products protect and strengthen the skin’s natural barrier.


Vitamins A, C, D and B-complex help boost the body’s natural antioxidant network. 


Vitamin B3 aids skin cells by reducing, protecting and repairing skin from damage done by pollution.


A daily dose of fruits, vegetables and spices like curcumin and ginseng help balance the effects of stress on the skin.

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