ANTI-POLLUTION IS THE NEW SPF

Skincare brands are recognizing that it's not just the sun that can be damaging.

In addition to UV rays, pollutants found in the air (think car exhaust fumes, cigarette smoke, or particles emitted from buildings) can also negatively impact skin. “These substances can yield inflammation, which in turn can lead to hyperpigmentation and collagen breakdown causing increased wrinkle formation,” says Carlos Charles, MD, a New York City-based dermatologist. Additionally, a recent study conducted in China confirmed that traffic-related pollution correlates with increased age spots.

While these airborne toxins are a byproduct of living in a city, beauty and grooming brands have taken steps to help us protect against potential damage. “The best way to directly combat the deleterious effects of pollution is to add a topical antioxidant to your daily skincare regimen,” says Charles. “Products containing vitamin C and E as well as the use of retinoids can be beneficial in minimizing and preventing unwanted effects.”

Here, four to try now.