(What you MUST Know About Photoaging)
Your skin can change dramatically in different climates, and as seasons begin to change, not to mention how humidity (or lack thereof) and what high altitudes can do to your face…what you don’t know will age you – FAST.
For Example, Did You Know?
- The skin of women who live in urban environments ages 10% faster than those of women who live in rural environments. Pollution and environmental toxicity come from all directions.
- The sun is a natural source of UV, blue and infra-red (IR) light. All of these rays induce photoaging.
- Blue light, also known as High Energy Visible Light (HEV) is coming from sunlight and electronic devices such as laptops, smartphones, etc., and can impact the skin and lead to related diseases.
- The skin is sensitive to its surrounding environment. Sun, pollution, wind, and temperature variations can affect skin and hair health. These daily attacks alter the protective barrier function of the skin by releasing free radicals and causing oxidative stress.
- Daily skincare routines should be adjusted as seasons change to compensate for related climate changes.
- The skin should be protected daily and topical treatments RICH with antioxidant and light filtering/reflective ingredients are essential to prevent premature aging, oxidative stress, and pigmentation changes.
Let’s Take A Look At Different Climates Effect On The Skin:
Hot, Humid Climates
When it’s hot, your skin’s job is to help cool your body. Excess heat from inside the body is released by expanding blood vessels closer to the skin’s surface (that’s why you look rosy and flushed when it’s very hot). Sweat glands start perspiration (sweating) bringing water to the surface to further cool you down- the tradeoff cost to your skin is excess TEWL (TransEpidermal Water Loss) from inside your skin. Unfortunately, the skin’s natural cooling process doesn’t work well in high humidity. The heavy, wet air prevents sweat from easily escaping off your skin, trapping heat, (and everything flowing in the wet air) onto your skin. That’s why 85 degrees in a tropical climate feels more like 95 degrees. Skin Detoxification is HUGE here, and purging the pores of sweat, oils, makeup, and congestion is priority #1 to keep the skin clear. Oil-free hydration with anti-inflammatory ingredients is ideal for this situation and great for days at the beach as well.
Dry, Desert Climates
The drier the air, the more moisture loss you experience. This naturally occurring process is called Transepidermal Water Loss (TEWL) and it’s the natural state of skin in the desert. Strong UV light and pollution are heightened in this extreme climate, and tremendous amounts of free radicals further accelerate the skins aging trajectory. Gentle, pH neutral, creamy cleansers are a must for this climate, and moisturizers with birch bark extract and seaweed will help re-mineralize the skin and protect it from environmental aggressors. Avoid higher pH, acid-based, foaming cleansers as they will further dry your skin. NOT what you want in dry, arid climates!
Mist, Mist, Mist!!! Any time your skin is feeling tight or dry, it’s time to mist. This being said, all mists are NOT created equal and ingredients are EVERYTHING here…natural anti-inflammatories and antioxidant complexes are not only hydrating for parched skin but healing as well. Look for ingredient labels that contain potent botanicals like Helichrysum (immortelle) flower oil, spirulina extract, lemon balm, and sodium hyaluronate. These are excellent ingredients to help heal, refresh and restore desert parched skin.
High Altitude and Dry, Mountain Air
The higher the altitude, the more your skin struggles to stay naturally hydrated and flexible. Once you’re higher than 2,000 ft elevation, the skin cannot stay hydrated long at all. The air is very thin and air pressure is low and even good moisturizers can’t stay in your skin for long. Mountain and the high desert climate is the most damaging climate for your skin. UV light intensity goes up by 20% for every 1,000 ft in elevation and without special care, skin shows signs of dryness, loss of firmness, & premature aging such as fine lines & wrinkles. This high-intensity blue light, unfortunately, penetrates skin even further than UVB and UVA, causing photodamage, dull skin, aging, and hyperpigmentation.
Very few UV filters currently extend protection into the blue light range. Blue light potentially damages ALL skin layers. According to a 2014 study in the Journal of Photodermatology, Photoimmunology, and Photomedicine, non-UV solar radiation significantly contributes to photoaging and needs to be taken into consideration when choosing healthy skincare products for your daily skincare regimen. Skin oils rich in omega 3 fatty acids and potent antioxidants become a vital part of daily skincare in this situation, and healing skin balms that protect the skin from chapping, windburn, and frigid temperatures are needed here.
Aviation and Air Travel:
As a former flight attendant, I know what air travel and busy, on-the-go lifestyles are like! Flying is extremely dehydrating, and few people know there is only about 20 percent relative humidity inside an aircraft cabin, whereas the optimal level is between 40-70 percent. This can translate to all sorts of itchy skin issues, and for those with conditions like rosacea, eczema, or psoriasis, even a short flight could lead to a nasty flare-up. An antioxidant-rich hydrating mist is soooo perfect to help offset these challenges in the air and spritzing your skin frequently while traveling can help tremendously. In addition to that, pilots, cabin crew, and frequent fliers please take note of this surprising fact – a scientific review published in JAMA Dermatology found that pilots and cabin crew are occupationally exposed to much higher levels of UV radiation than the rest of us, making them twice as likely to develop melanoma. FACT: we are exposed to 9 times the amount of UV radiation at 35,000 feet than we are on the ground. So, if you frequently find yourself on an airplane, especially if you are lucky enough to get a window seat, remember to apply antioxidant-rich sun protection like Total Eclipse to help prevent skin damage during flight.
You will probably never think of your daily skincare routine quite the same way again when you take your climate into consideration, but that’s a good thing! Knowledge is power – and applying that knowledge, in this case, will change the trajectory of your skincare results.
My Passion is your solution!