City living comes with many perks. You’re in the thick of all the action, and there’s never a dull moment to be had—except when it comes to our skin. With all the hustle and bustle comes certain drawbacks, mostly the environmental stressors that being in an urban setting can bring. These can include anything from UV rays, particulates—whether dust or pollen—and other airborne aggressors that may impact our skin.
Countless studies have shown the correlation between increased air pollution and the likelihood of premature ageing and skin sensitivity.
How? To put it simply, environmental stressors can contribute to free radicals being produced in excess, resulting in oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can potentially compromise the skin’s barrier properties, which can, in turn, lead to skin dehydration—as water loss increases—leading to changes in suppleness and resilience and a greater propensity for reactivity, sensitivity and aggravation.
While we can’t do away with the pollution itself, there are some surefire ways to help protect our skin. Advancements in skin care have come a long way, and there are plenty of products on the market that are designed to minimise the adverse effects of city living and support our skin health.
Ahead, our roundup of the best products for supporting healthy skin in urban environments.
AESOP PARSLEY SEED ANTI-OXIDANT INTENSE SERUM
Utilising the power of Parsley Seed and Grape Seed alongside Niacinamide (Vitamin B₃) and Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Aesop’s anti-oxidant-rich formulation provides fortifying hydration to help the skin withstand the rigours of urban living. Extracts of Tara Gum and Red Algae work in concert to deliver a near-weightless, breathable film, imperceptibly safeguarding the skin and readying it to take on the day.
While it works hard to support skin against environmental stressors, its multifunctional benefits gently hydrate and replenish, making it suitable for a wide range of skin types—sensitive skin included.
MECCA COSMETICA TO SAVE FACE SPF50+ BRIGHTENING SUN SERUM
SPF is a must, but it doesn’t need to be a chore—or disrupt your regular makeup routine. This featherlight sunscreen formula provides high protection and glides on seamlessly, leaving no trace of white casts or greasiness.
SKINCEUTICALS C E FERULIC SERUM
With a big fan in Hailey Bieber, this IYKYK serum is an all-time favourite for a healthy dose of vitamin C. Combining a potent blend of vitamin C, L-ascorbic acid and Ferulic acid, it’s a highly-effective weapon in the fight against pollution and free radical damage.
Also read: Welcome To The Grazia Beauty Black Book 2023
KIT: MINERAL WATER CLEANSER
We love to take care of our skin, but city living also leaves us a little time-poor. For those days when you’re on the go, reach for a shortcut to clean skin with this micellar water spritz.
DR. BARBARA STURM ANTI-POLLUTION SKIN DROPS
Dr. Barbara Sturm Anti-Pollution Drops, $215 from Dr. Barbara Sturm, SHOP NOW
To boost the protective power of your daily moisturiser, mix in a few drops of this antioxidant-rich serum that fights off pollution particles, including the harmful blue light emitted from our electronics.
THIS WORKS IN TRANSIT NO TRACES PADS
When you’re out and about, these easy-to-use pads are a convenient cleansing method to remove all traces of dirt on the skin’s surface and beyond.
Infused with rosewater, healing allantoin and antimicrobial Echium oil, the formula-soaked pads work to remove impurities whilst calming irritated skin with vitamin E.
CHANEL LE MASQUE ANTI-POLLUTION VITAMIN CLAY MASK
With purifying French clay, vitamin C and E derivatives, this luxurious mask is great for a deep clean that doesn’t strip the skin of its natural moisture levels and actively brightens uneven tones.
FOREO LUNA 4 GO FACIAL CLEANSING & FIRMING DEVICE
When a cleanser isn’t enough, invest in a cleansing tool that can pick up the dirt and debris hidden in our pores that regular cleansers can leave behind. Pores are tighter after just a few uses, leaving less room for those urban toxins to wander in.
This article originally appeared on Grazia International.