We all know that the daily grind takes its toll but up until now the effects of this on our skin have gone unnoticed.
According to a survey carried out by skin care experts Garnier Skin Naturals, London, Birmingham, Manchester and Cardiff are four cities in the UK most likely to leave your skin looking dull, grimy and grey.
This problem is due to the effects of dirt and pollution combined with the growing trend for long-lasting make-up that’s hard to remove properly.
Whilst most people are aware of the importance of using the right moisturiser to hydrate and protect their skin, few realise that without proper cleansing, skin can be damaged leaving it prone to clogged pores, premature ageing and even chemical damage.
In fact, pollution and make-up build up are second only to sun exposure when it comes to causing skin damage.
Moreover, forgetting to cleanse reduces the effectiveness of anti-ageing creams and moisturisers in general.
In order to counter the effects of daily grime including make-up and dead skin cells together with dirt and pollution, Garnier Skin Naturals has developed New Garnier Clean & Fresh and New Garnier Clean & Soft - a two part pink and green colour-coded cleansing range tailored to your skin type.
If you’ve got dry or sensitive skin opt for Garnier Clean & Soft with soothing rose essence and for normal to combination skin opt for Garnier Clean & Fresh with refreshing properties of apple and grape extracts.
On an average day, city dwellers face thousands of pollutants and chemical damage produced by urban traffic, industrial plants and even barbecues and pesticides.
These chemicals alter the skin’s natural protective film allowing chemicals to directly damage and inflame the skin.
The chief culprit for this in Cardiff, Manchester, Birmingham and London is the increase in traffic fumes.
These combine with UV rays to form low-level ozone or smog - both of which are on the increase throughout Britain.
In contrast, Edinburgh, with its relative lack of UV light, does not experience the same effect. However, emissions from diesel vehicles and volatile compounds from car engines are a cause for concern.
To combat these problems, the ingredients in the Garnier Clean & Fresh and Clean & Soft ranges have been selected for their natural efficacy and ability to cleanse the skin of daily pollutants.
The natural active rose ingredient in Garnier Clean & Soft is renowned for its skin calming effects, working against molecules that have damaged and inflamed the skin.
Similarly, the grape extract in Garnier Clean & Fresh, is high in antioxidants, thereby offering protection from the degenerative effects that cause ageing.
Grape also helps to freshen the complexion, making it the perfect cleanser for combination skins.
When used regularly, both grape and rose essences and extracts can help to repair the skin day after day.
Both variants also harness the power of innovative cleansing micro fruit oils to leave skin perfectly cleansed -of both long-lasting make-up and oil-based dirt and grime - but without greasiness.
Julie McManus, Garnier Scientific Advisor and skin care expert, explains:
“The pollution we all come into contact with is caused by traffic and chemicals released into the air. Whilst we can help combat pollution by adapting simple day-to-day activities - such as where we walk or stand when crossing the road - how and what we use to clean grime off our skin is by far the most prominent factor when it comes to protection - prevention is better than cure”.
In addition to using the appropriate cleansing product for your skin, why not also follow Julie McManus` top tips to protect your skin from pollution:
? take anti oxidants such as vitamin E and vitamin C daily
? drinking 2 litres of water per day can flush the system of toxins and keep the skin hydrated
? always walk at a metre’s length from the kerb side, as far from the traffic and fumes as possible
? aim to leave for work earlier in the morning to avoid rush hour traffic and high levels of dust on the busy Tube
? always try to walk along quiet streets - busy junctions are best avoided, as there is often a high level of pollution at traffic lights
? when waiting to cross a road, stand away from the kerb side and breathe through the nose instead of the mouth
? drive less - use public transport instead
? when driving, use unleaded petrol
? wear a mask when cycling
? avoid exercising near high-traffic areas
? do not exercise outdoors when dirt and pollution particle levels are high (listen to the weather report on breakfast television for confirmation), or substitute an activity that requires less exertion
When at home
? eliminate indoor smoking
? reduce use of fireplaces and wood-burning stoves
? don`t use barbecue lighter fuels or oil based paints and solvents
Even these small steps will make a difference, as will cleansing your skin properly daily. It’s time to wise up and stop letting the daily grime get you - and your skin - down.
For further information please visit the Garnier website http://www.garnierbeautybar.com/.