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While we’re not discounting the damaging effects of the sun, there’s another environmental elements that’s just as big of a culprit when it comes to aging: pollution. “While we don’t know exactly how much pollution exposure is necessary for damage to occur, in a study in Chinese women older than 50, there was an increase in spots on the cheeks due to pollution,” says Charlotte dermatologist Gilly Munavalli, MD. Pollution damage, or particle pollution, is a mix of super small particles and liquid droplets of acids, chemicals, soil, metals or dust in the environment that penetrate through pores and follicles in the skin. “Evidence still points to the sun as the cause of premature aging. However, more studies are looking into the effects of pollution coupled with UV damage as factors for pigmentation,” says Dr. Munavalli. While you shouldn’t forgo daily SPF, anti-pollution products, which contain plant extracts, vitamins C and E and phytobotanicals, add another layer of defense. Find it in TULA Urban Defense Hydrating Mist ($28), Dr. Jart+ Black Label Detox BB Beauty Balm ($18), Guinot Bioxygene Serum ($80) and Elizabeth Arden Prevage City Smart ($68).
The Re-emergence of Whipped Products
When the skin care industry was in its infancy and fancy formulations and supercharged ingredients didn’t exist, most products had a whipped consistency. “Nivea hit the market with what we now call a retro whipped cream,” says Drunk Elephant founder Tiffany Masterson. Today, these formulations are back in the spotlight for their light, airy textures that don’t suffocate the skin. More beneficial than the originals, these versions contain hyaluronic acid, butters and essential oils to lock in moisture and fight aging. You can find whipped formulations in Drunk Elephant Lala Retro Whipped Cream ($60), Winky Lux Whipped Cream Face Primer ($19) and Josie Maran Whipped Mud Mask Argan Hydrating Treatment ($48).
Beauty Wipes Are All the Rage
Beauty wipes became popular years ago and never really fell to the wayside. Their main purpose: cleansing skin and removing makeup. Now, brands are adding beauty wipes to their skin care lines and taking them to the next level, encompassing everything from self-tanner and brightening and exfoliating agents to sunscreen, lip preps and deodorant in cloth form. “There are countless uses for cloths and many are formulated to target specific skin types and concerns. Active ingredients and beauty formulations can be worked into a wipe when there is a dense texture to the cloth in dry form, which allows actives to bind with the material,” says skin care expert Ole Henriksen. Wipes are best used as an adjunct to your regular skin care routine.
Brushes Made for Skin Care
After Matthew Waitesmith launched his ultraluxe Artis makeup brushes—they meld ergonomics with design—at prestige department stores, he noticed that the brushes were being used to demo skin care products at the counters. “The customers were encountering a soothing experience when the brushes were used because of the precise application they delivered,” Waitesmith says. And so, the Artis Digit Skincare 5 Brush Set in Coffret ($225) was born. “The brushes feature proprietary additives that enhance the performance of the fibers in them. It’s a complicated step, but it’s worth it.” The first ever set of skin care brushes created, the tools work with creams, liquids, gels, serums and powders. Rather than using your fingers to apply products, Waitesmith says brushes provide an even application for superior results.
The Next Generation of Fragrance-Free
Those with sensitive skin usually shy away from using products with fragrances in them due to skin irritations, sensitivities and redness. But all of that is about to change as a new product category known as “soothing fragrances” comes to market. As Usha Vijay, vice president of marketing for Syrmrise North America, explains, soothing fragrances are skin care products formulated with synthetic bisabolol and ginger to help calm irritated skin with the benefit of scent. These products aren’t irritating to skin, so you don’t have to compromise form or function to look your best.
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