Protect your hair and skin from pollution damage

21-11-2021 Sun 11:19 IST | IANS | Lifestyle
Protect your hair and skin from pollution damage

Winter has arrived, bringing with it dry, flaky skin and hair. Frizzy, lifeless, and damaged hair, as well as dry skin, cannot be blamed only on the winters. Our skin and hair are influenced by many different things, like the ultraviolet radiation from the sun or pollution, particularly pollution from cities.

One of the worst enemies of skin and hair is pollution. Established industries, car emissions, and cigarette smoking all contribute to rising pollution levels. The most harmful pollutants are particulate matter (PM), which includes PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) and poisonous gases like SO2, NO2, NO, CO2 and CO2.

"The exposure to smoke, dust, toxic gas, particulate matter, nickel, lead and arsenic can lead to a condition called 'Sensitive Scalp Syndrome', which happens when this particulate matter settles on the scalp and in the hair shafts."

"Pollution exposure can cause chemical damage to the hair. It leads to degrading hair protein, affects the hydrophilic hair surface niche and damages the hair cuticles."

"According to a recent research, Intense exposure to the pollutants also affects the skin, reduces the stratum corneum (outer skin layer) quality, increases the dark spots, intensity wrinkles, fine lines and affects the normal composition of natural sebum production."

"Pollution exposure, particularly PM, VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and PAHs are also known to inflame the skin, increases the oxidative stress in the skin and working synergistically with harmful sun rays, these pollutants can be one of the main reasons of skin cancer."

All these facts are enough to understand how dangerous and detrimental pollution is for our skin and hair. We need to take some proper precautions to protect our hair and skin from this natural enemy. Here's a list of some of the best pollution skincare and hair care suggestions for you today:

Skin Care Tips

Applying broad-spectrum sunscreen every day is important

A broad-spectrum sunscreen with the power of antioxidants is the right option for your skin to protect it from the effects of pollutants. A broad-spectrum sunscreen gives your skin a shield against UVA, UVB, and IR rays. However, the richness of antioxidants in a sunscreen provides full protection from pollution.

This is why you don't apply sunscreen even a single day throughout the year.

Must cleanse the face after returning the home

We rinse our face in the morning for freshness, but in the evening cleansing, the face not only provides you with freshness but also a big relief from dust, grime, and pollutants. Select charcoal-based or active ingredients like vitamin C or retinol-based serums to deeply cleanse your skin from the particles of pollutants.

Never skip this step, no matter how tired you are. For healthy skin, this step is a must.

Give your skin the night skin repair therapy

The other thing you need to include in your night skin care routine is a good repair face serum or cream. Retinol, vitamin C or ferulic acid-based face serums are best to repair polluted skin.

These ingredients are rich in antioxidants, which help to neutralise free radicals, reduce oxidative stress and reduce pollutant-induced skin damage.

Go for a home-based detox face pack every week

There is an ultimate DIY detox face pack that you will love to apply to your face, especially if you are a chocolate or coffee lover. You'll need cocoa powder and ground coffee beans for this pack.

These two ingredients contain the best antioxidants to cleanse the face. Take both ingredients in an equal quantity and add coconut oil or milk to make a fine paste. Add honey if you want to, and apply it to your face. Let it dry and rinse your face with normal water. Apply a moisturiser afterwards.

Hair Care Tips

Cover your hair with cloth or hat when outside

Whenever outside, make sure to cover your hair with a cloth or a hat, as it will hinder the direct contact of pollutants with your hair. In the winter, this may be the best option.

Don't forget to apply a good hair serum

If you are unable to cover your hair, you must apply a hair protecting serum before going out. It forms a thin covering layer over your hair and protects it from toxic gases and other urban pollutants. The hair serum not only gives shine to the hair but also works as a protector of the hair and keeps it intact from pollution and heat.

Rinse the hair every two to three days

Make sure to rinse your hair every 2 to 3 days, especially if you live in an area with high pollution levels. It will clear up all the dirt and pollutants from your scalp, and you can flaunt healthy, wavy, luscious hair.

Give your hair a keratin spa or keratin mask

Pollutants can also impact hair protein levels. To restore it, you should go to a keratin spa at home using a good hair mask. For this, you need 1 tablespoon of almond oil, 1 tablespoon of honey, and 1 egg yolk. Mix the ingredients and apply the paste on the overall scalp and hair. Keep it for about an hour and shampoo the hair.

These tips can protect you from pollution and revive your skin and hair to maintain their natural essence. Along with these, you must add antioxidant-rich foods like citrus fruits, broccoli, spinach, onions, garlic, and turmeric to revive skin and hair from the inside.

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