The best anti-pollution products

Eat well, stay out of the sun and sleep eight hours. That is the healthy skin mantra we all try to follow. Now the threat to our complexions is the increasing levels of airborne pollutants Trudi Brewer explains why a new wave of anti-pollution skin shields are essential.

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Even if you're a stickler for using sunscreen every day and have a rigorous beauty routine, eat loads of brightly coloured superfoods - experts say it may not be enough to keep your skin in good shape. New York dermatologist Amy Wechsler, M.D says, “Free radical oxidants break down collagen and cause damage to DNA, which over time causes wrinkles and skin cancer.” New research has shown that pollution levels around the world, particularly in big busy cities are high enough to compromise any complexion. For a quick science lesson the enemy we need to avoid is PM2.5 which are microscopic pollutant particles floating in our atmosphere that measure less than two and a half microns. Invisible to the eye, they do some significant damage, such as clog pores, and penetrate down to the deeper levels of the skin speeding up cellular ageing and even causing hyperpigmentation (those brown marks that are near impossible to remove). While cleansing skin twice a day helps, Wechsler believes if you live in a busy city, you must cleanse the moment you get home, to prevent those toxins sinking into skin. Pollution particles left on the skin can produce free radicals that cause oxidative stress, which is what accelerates ageing. An antioxidant-packed skin mist and SPF should be part of your daily beauty arsenal along with a new breed of skin protectors known as skin shields. Packed with potent antioxidants Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart Hydrating Shield SPF50 is getting rave reviews across the globe. Beauty experts are touting this the cure all of anti-pollution skin shields, which also happens to block UV rays as well. With a patent pending anti-pollution, antioxidant blend (Idebenone, green tea, ferulic acid, and L-carnosine to name a few), Prevage City Smart's job once on the skin is to annihilate both oxygen and nitrogen-based free radicals, while the algae enzymes strengthen skin against oxidative stress, reinforcing the skin's barrier. to the environment And not just a heavy-weight skincare product, it’s super hydrating without being greasy, and leaves a flattering tinted, lightweight SPF 50 finish on the skin - pretty smart indeed.

Here are some of the star performers when it comes to shielding skin from daily pollution. 

Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart Hydrating Shield SPF50, $112. Lancôme City Miracle CC Cream, $81.
Ren Flash Defence Anti-Pollution Mist, $71.

Declèor Hydra Floral anti-pollution hydra gel-creme, $115. Kiehl's Cilantro & Orange Extract Pollution Purifying Masque, $40. Clarins Extra Firming Day, $140.