Smog: How Does It Affect Your Skin?


Surely most of you are aware of the negative effect that smog has on our health. But do you know how it affects the skin? I’m happy to tell you everything I know about it and give you a few pieces of advice concerning skin treatments dedicated mainly for those living in big towns and urban areas. By the end of this post you will have learned how to shield your skin from smog. Let’s start, shall we?

What is smog?

Smog is an urban toxin. It’s a mix of substances proven to have negative effects on skin, often being hazardous for human life. As it’s easy to guess, our lungs are the ones who suffer most from inhaling smog, but our skin has a hard time as well. I’ve come across many reports emphasizing the brute truth of smog, where it was compared to a cocktail of dangerous chemicals that ruin our skin. This harmful dust lingers on our faces, making it look duller and causing dehydration. Skin has no chance to function properly when it’s constantly exposed to urban pollution.

What chemicals constitute smog?

In short, smog is a toxic combination of low molecular dust, benzopyrene, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, as well as heavy metals such as: manganese, chromium, cadmium, lead, mercury. Sounds bad, right?

How does smog affect your skin?

Badly 🙂 The harmful smog:

  • damages the protective coating of skin
  • exposes skin to the adverse effect of external aggressors
  • impedes skin’s self-healing processes
  • makes skin dry, rough and irritated
  • promotes redness and eczema
  • causes acne and inflammations
  • leads to wrinkles and discolorations

As you can see, smog is a disaster 🙁

How to protect skin from smog?

Don’t worry! You can shield your skin from the disastrous consequences of smog and urban pollution. How to do it correctly?

1. Deep cleansing

I’m not talking about morning face cleaning but more about wiping the skin with a gentle cleanser a few times a day. Believe me, freeing skin from dust and pollution brings nothing but benefits. To me, Thalgo Pro Regulator Make Up Remover or Epionce Litic Gel Cleanser are two top face cleansers that I may recommend to you today.

2. Antioxidation

How can you face up the attack of smog? Reach for a good face serum enriched with antioxidants! Such elixirs must be formulated with A, C and E vitamins, white tea extracts and aloe known for bringing relief to skin that is constantly irritated by dust and urban pollution. Here I’d recommend you Sesderma Resveraderm Liposomal Serum, Nanoil Vit. C Face Serum and Nanoil Retinol Face Serum.

3. Anti-smog barrier

In other words, you should make sure that your skin is shielded so no smog can harm it. You can do it by maintaining high moisture levels in skin and delivering lipids (e.g. during winter, or at night through a rich plant oil). In winter use rich creams that are formulated not only with moisturizers such as hyaluronic acid, but also with ceramides that reconstruct the damaged hydro-lipid barrier. Try using one of the following: Dermalogica Barrier Repair, Selvert Thermal Regenerating Cream With Snail Protein Extract and Thalgo Collagen Cream.

NOTE: Remember to provide your skin with sun protection. UV rays reach your skin no matter the season, and their effect on skin isn’t beneficial either.

Let me just add that there are many cosmetic brands that offer anti-pollution treatments. You don’t have to spend your money on expensive products if you don’t want to. Check Yves Rocher offer and their Moringa oil series, or the green series from Biotniqe.

What’s your anti-pollution strategy?