Hubert Burda Media

Barrier Against The Haze

Barrier Against The Haze

Barrier Against The Haze

We’re all too familiar by now with the gut-wrenching malodour of stale smoke that has invaded our premises as we open our windows with hopes of being greeted by fresh air. Our immediate response is to gently recoil, occasionally fanning the toxic smog with our hands before getting on with our day. A convenient attempt at keeping the smog from entering our system is by plastering an N95 mask across our faces (courtesy of the company’s welfare). But if you think about it, there is an organ that also suffers from the pollution apart from the lungs. That’s right, it’s our skin.

“Haze clogs the skin and also causes it to be more sensitive than usual,” informs Dr Low Chai Ling, Medical Director of The Sloane Clinic (Singapore). Male patients who walk through the doors of the clinic come with complaints about their skin feeling bumpy, congested and irritated, not realising that it is a result of long hours they spend outdoors. Playing outdoor sports and taking our thicker skin (biologically speaking) for granted exposes our skin to the hazy atmosphere that’s heavily laced with pollutants and free radicals. This obviously has its repercussions - the skin can only take that many beatings before it starts to react unfavourably. But before you fork out the extra dough for quick results, Dr Low shares some measures you could do at home to keep your skin calm in the face of the haze.

Cleansing

“Men typically have larger pores and oilier skin than women, so keeping grime off the face with a regular cleansing regime is key,” Dr Low points out. To the regular soap-and-water guys out there, she stresses on the importance of proper cleansing. “A good cleanser is a must,” she implores.

August Man Picks

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_d4efc6d0e1f621302a078798873e5a0a42_664b95c94eaaecb6e1fa47811bd3e0be63

Aesop’s Balancing Cleanser, $41 (100ml) or $65 (200ml): Rids the skin of grime while balancing the skin with botanical ingredients

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_fadc0b72bef5017aa53490141ae1513b31_539e3933d482b13b24f2cd2104f7435848

Lab Series’ Power Wash, $49 (250ml): Relies on enzymatic power to break down grime and pollution for a more thorough cleanse

Exfoliation

If you’re wondering why your skin is feeling a little like the surface of a road, that’s because the skin is severely congested with haze particles that get stuck on the skin. As a desperate plea for help, it flares up in angry red bumps. “Exfoliation helps decongest the skin, keeping the complexion clear as a result,” advises Dr Low.

August Man Picks

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_66378ccdab89d82d7464e6ea9079e03674_87968ba00f726809db85d97cea05b8b588

Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Energizing Scrub, $51 (100ml): Sloughs off dead skin cells and pollutants with crushed apricot kernels, and infused with energising caffeine and citrus oils for a brighter complexion

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_f0b0e8fb073cabcfcde5214db9b2927e21_fd34d7d63964b1cb48140cb6284dbd6933

Origins’ Modern Friction, $56 (75ml): Gently sloughs off daily grime with rice starch for fresher skin

Antioxidant Rich Moisturiser

Along with unsightly bumps, pollutants also cause the skin to get red and itchy as a result of irritation caused by free radicals that’s abundant in the haze-heavy air. “Antioxidants fight free radicals found in haze, and hydration keeps the skin barrier healthy,” explains Dr Low. The solution? “An antioxidant enriched moisturiser,” she answers.

August Man Picks

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_8cad668d1dbf42b6b6571d84891a83f026_c3de68883c9e8f9ca8a008f831f0cc3542

Parsley Seed Anti-Oxidant Hydrator, $85 (60ml): Lightweight moisturiser packed with extracts of antioxidant powerhouses – parsley seed, white tea, and willowherb – to combat free radical damage.

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_64cc66cfd501e520c9f9034bf6552bda71_6259998b6ebcc38ae6dcefbd82cb340981

Lab Series’ Daily Moisture Defense Lotion SPF 15, $65 (50ml): Non-greasy antioxidant sunscreen that could could also double as a moisturiser. Infused with SPF15 to kill many birds with one stone.

Sunscreen

The haze may cloud our vision but as long as the sun hovers above our heads, harmful UV rays are most definitely present to wreak havoc on the skin. On the topic of sun protection, Dr Low puts it succinctly, “Sun protection is still important.”

August Man Picks

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_a18885c34f16e720fb323b061ef2650504_0961d1ece39984a53cc5453a10a1647515

Daylong Broad Spectrum SPF50 by Cetaphil, $32.90 (50ml): Shields the face from the sun with its lightweight gel formula infused with SPF 50 and broad spectrum protection

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_9af6b42781495a22d9274092caa3f82b95_038bf4d395ab83616045b279abba4e1197

Biotherm Homme UV Defense, $68 (30ml): Protects the face from harmful sun rays with its ultra-lightweight sun-shielding formula

Masks

Biologically, a man’s skin is thicker and tougher. But it gets tired too, so it’s only right give it a pat on the back after all the haze-related tribulations it has battled through the day. Clay masks are great for clearing the pores, and if you want to restore good health to lacklustre skin, Dr Low suggests an antioxidant-infused mask. Your skin will thank you for it, guys.

August Man Picks

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_85bd6a75c8f94e5e75a3934687dfef8f42_d3af192e34bf1b78753256630f0d742a56

Clay Mask - Origins’ Clear Improvement Charcoal Mask, $50 (100ml): Decongests haze-clogged pores with its gunk-absorbing ingredients

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_053cfd609399c2e5e207ba4679ed8d5a06_5cf8b75c51f7ce8d50b732c6ff5f708524

Antioxidant Mask – Sloane’s Glow Therapy Mask, $21.40 (1 sheet) or $107 (box of 6): Boosts skin health with antioxidants like Vitamin C, and astaxanthin (a red algae derivative)

Treatments

If redness and irritation persist despite the measures taken above, Dr Low suggests heading down to the Sloane Clinic and give the Vbeam Treatment a shot.

Barrier Against The Haze-am_il_v1001_i_be640ad3031eff8822b911152246ab2b29_e6431cd4263b39332830890c80657e8b43

Full-face Vbeam Treatment, $642: The laser treatment claims to soothe inflamed skin with zero downtime. Perfect if you’re looking for a quick fix for guys who are always on the go

For more information on The Sloane Clinic and the treatments they offer, visit http://www.sloaneclinic.com

You may like this