If you are living in an urban environment like us, then it’s a given that you are constantly exposed to hidden airborne pollutants that can cause serious health issues such as cancer and heart diseases. And this problem is getting more and more serious. Growing up, the harmful effects pollution causes to our skin, being the largest organ, was often overlooked. Fast-forward to 2018,  many people have become more aware of the damage it can cause our skin, from irritating and inflaming skin, clogging pores and accelerating premature ageing.

With the rise of this issue, the beauty industry responded accordingly by creating more products that offered anti-pollution properties. According to Mintel, a global market research firm, over 38 per cent of new beauty products launched in the Asia Pacific market in 2016 carried an anti-pollution claim, up from just 28 per cent of launches in the region in 2015.

Although we may not see or feel the effects of pollution immediately, it can cause your skin to deteriorate in the long run if you do not take any action. Skin will slowly begin to lose its radiance as pollutants form a coat that envelops our entire skin, causing it to darken. This happens gradually and happens without people even noticing it. And when skin is blocked by a layer of harmful substances, pores will get easily clogged causing breakouts and congestion. Airborne toxins also slow down collagen production, resulting in skin losing its elasticity. Together with UV rays from the sun, the combination depletes oxygen from skin cells, which then leads to an increase in rough patches, wrinkles and acne.

And that you know the full damage that pollutants can cause to your complexion, you’re probably thinking to yourself that anti-pollution beauty products are going to be your new best friend. To help you get started, here are some products to check out.

From left: Laneige Anti-Pollution Defensor, $50, Anti-Pollution Finishing Pact, $36 and Anti-Pollution Mask, $28 for a box of five

The Laneige Anti-Pollution range comprises of the Defensor, Mask and Finishing Pact, all of which contain the brand’s Dust Block technology that is said to reflect fine dust through the principle of magnetic reflection. The defensor is a serum-like treatment that protects skin from fine dust, while the mask contains ginger oil and saururus extract to protect skin from harmful environmental aggressors. 

Lastly, the finishing pact provides your skin with a layer of protection and features powder particles of different sizes which are set close together to form an even and smooth coat on your skin. It prevents any dirt from clinging to your skin, while also providing UV protection. The product comes in a blend of two powders (green tea calming powder and sebum control powder) to help soothe, brighten and absorb excess oil.  

Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart Double Action Detox Peel Off Mask, $114

The Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart Double Action Detox Peel Off Mask works like a pore pack, but for dirt and surface dead skin cells. Just apply the gel, let it dry, then strip it off. Enriched with plant extracts that promise to boost skin’s natural detox process, it leaves the complexion immediately brighter, softer and smoother.

Dior One Essential City Defense SPF 50 PA++++, $95

The Dior One Essential City Defense also gets our vote as it contains the anti-pollutant ingredient Moringa seed extract, and acts as a topcoat on our face to prevent pollution from penetrating into our skin. This lightweight sunscreen is also formulated with Japanese lily of the valley extract to strengthen epidermis and antioxidants to fight free radical damage.

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