How can pollution affect your skin?

There’s lots to be grateful for in this wonderful world. Yet for the amazing advances in science and tech helping us be more connected, getting the natural world back on track needs attention. It might not top the global to-dos, but being confident in our skin as we tackle saving the planet is important. With dust, UV rays and pesky pollution playing a role in premature ageing, making skin look less healthy-looking, we’re here to help. Guiding you back to your au naturel roots, get to know our anti-pollution skincare and the routines to help you revive your well-deserved glow.

Woman laying on her back smiling

Prolonged exposure to pollution can make your skin look dull

If lacklustre skin is one of your skincare pet peeves, read on as we uncover the reasons why your complexion seems to have lost its natural glow. There is a whole host of reasons why your skin looks dull —dehydration, stress, hormones, sun exposure, excess of dead skin cells, etc. Among the most common reasons for dull and tired-looking skin is exposure to pollution.

Air pollution is believed to have potentially harmful effects on your skin and to help accelerate the skin ageing process. Smoke, smog and sunlight can create ‘free radicals’; pollution particles that sap the skin’s natural ability to act as a protective barrier. Exposure to pollution can weaken the skin, leading it to appear dull, lacking in radiance and vitality. Thorough daily cleansing is vital if you live in a high-pollution area. City types, listen up: help revive dull skin with our anti-pollution skincare routine.

How to revive dull skin

Discover our 6-step skincare routine to help you revive the natural glow of your complexion.

Woman applying polishing face mask

Step 1: Cleanse

As with all good skincare routines, first up you bet you’ll want to cleanse. Helping to remove grime, dirt and other nasties from your face, you can see why cleansing is pretty crucial – even the novices among us are likely to be advocates of a good face wash. In this anti-pollution skincare routine to help revive dull skin, we’re championing our Tea Tree Skin Clearing Facial Wash to help prep skin. Enriched with Community Fair Trade tea tree oil from Kenya, this vegan face wash helps to remove impurities and excess oil from the skin’s surface, leaving it feeling deeply cleansed and refreshed. Start off with a small dollop in the centre of your palm, rub your hands together and massage into your wet face, using circular motions upwards from neck to hairline to help cleanse the skin. It creates a rich lather that feels gentle and cooling. Rinse off with lukewarm water.

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Brush loaded with The Body Shop pollution clearing face mask

Step 2: Face Mask

Now you’re ready for our best anti-pollution face mask to help liberate your face of everyday impurities. Who said taking care of your skin is all work and no play? With our Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask you’ll feel like you’re painting your face in a pleasing ritual that recalls the relaxing sensation of raking sand through a zen garden. Use our Facial Mask Brush to apply the mask in circular motions, making a loop around your forehead, down your temple and back up around your nose, avoiding the eye area. Make figure-of-eight loops across the rest of your face until you have a smooth and even layer over your whole visage. This creamy, authentic-feeling vegan face mask is enriched with matcha green tea from Kakegawa, Japan, dandelion extract and Community Fair Trade organic aloe vera from Mexico. So it’s pretty worldly, just like you.

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Man applying pollution clearing face mask

Step 3: Relax

We don’t need to tell you twice, do we. This is your moment to relax and let the anti-pollution face mask set to work. It only needs 5-10 minutes, so it’s the perfect excuse to put your feet up and read a chapter of your current book or plug into a mini podcast episode without having to contend with commuters. And when’s the last time you got a chance to do that? You’ll be able to really feel it getting to work thanks to a pleasant cooling and tingling sensation, that’s still gentle on skin. Lie back and soak up the scent of the mask – it’s like a breath of utterly blissful fresh air for skin.

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The Body Shop Camomile Muslin Cloth

Step 4: Remove

Wet one of our Muslin Cloths in lukewarm water and gently massage it into skin in small circular motions to help exfoliate and remove the face mask, ousting every trace of it from even the nooks and crannies of your complexion – pay particular attention to the nose and be careful around the delicate eye area. After removing this indulgent-feeling treat, your face will look rejuvenated and clarified, as if the dullness, impurities, pollution and grime that have built up during the day have been peeled off.

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Step 5: Tone

Before you do your fresh-feeling skin victory jig make sure to properly follow up your face mask by toning. Don’t roll the dice with your face – this step is important. Though often omitted, toning will help ensure that you’ve dislodged any lingering remnants of the face mask as well as remaining dirt and impurities from the skin that are too small for the naked eye to spot. And the product to use? Make it our Tea Tree Skin Clearing Mattifying Toner. Shake the bottle, then apply to one of our Organic Cotton Pads and pat it all over your face, avoiding the eye area, as ever. It helps skin to feel refreshed and clean without over-drying, with any excess oil on the skin's surface appearing vamoosed.

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Hands using The Body Shop Drops of Youth Concentrate

Step 6: Serum

Gold star for you if you finish your skincare-reviving game with our serum. Our Drops of Youth™ Youth Concentrate will help skin’s tone look more even and your face feel soothed. Apply 2-3 drops into the palm of one hand, rub hands together and gently massage into your face. This serum has a fresh texture and absorbs quickly into skin without any greasiness. It’s non-comedogenic, meaning its formula is designed to reduce the chances of pores getting blocked. Ideal, then, if your skin is oily or blemish-prone, or even if it just comes up against all sorts of aggressors in your day-to-day. You’ll know you’re winning because it helps skin to feel moisturised and its overall appearance to be improved.

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Brush loaded with The Body Shop pollution clearing face mask

"I think this mask is underrated honestly! It’s the best thing ever! After a very tough day I apply it. It leaves my skin soft, fresh, clear and supple.”

– Mini92

About Japanese Matcha Tea Pollution Clearing Mask

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Our Top Picks

City dwellers and urbanites, as well as those confronted with industry, transport and the like, might be more aware of feeling grubby after a day of battling through buses, trains and traffic. Equally, factory emissions and even volcanoes and wildfires can contribute to pollution when particles or gases from these natural occurrences end up in our air – another reason to take better care of the planet, then. To give skin a fighting chance, make sure to cleanse as soon as you get home. While our cleansers and toners will help clean your skin when you’re back home, your city skincare should include our best face moisturisers, face peels and serums to help defend against environmental aggressors and counteract their effects on skin.

The Body Shop Skin Defence Lotion on bathroom sink

Skin Defence Multi-Protection Lotion SPF 50++++

Our Skin Defence Multi-Protection Lotion SPF 50+ PA++++ is a lightweight lotion formulated to help moisturise while helping skin feel protected against those radiance-zapping daily aggressors and UV rays. It’s enriched with red algae extract and vitamin C and, used alongside your primary sunscreen, it offers a top-up of SPF protection. After use, skin is left feeling re-plumped with moisture, appearing healthier and more luminous. Ideal for helping to revive dull skin, then.

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Hands pumping The Body Shop Drops Of Youth Liquid Peel

Drops of Youth™ Youth Liquid Peel

Helping to gently lift impurities and dead cells alike, our Drops of Youth™ Youth Liquid Peel is a bit of a wildcard in your skincare arsenal. Massage it into skin and watch as it creates amazing noodles that help remove the things you don’t want on skin. As you massage it causes exfoliation that helps to peel off the day’s build-up of dirt, impurities, pollution particles and even fine dust particles. Skin is left feeling renewed.

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The Body Shop Drops of Youth Concentrate

Drops of Youth™ Youth Concentrate

An opponent of the effects of indoor and outdoor pollution, AKA skin that looks dull and zapped of radiance, our Drops of Youth™ Youth Concentrate helps your face to bounce back. Drop a few drops of this gel-like serum into your hands morning and night, massage it into your face and see how it helps to leave skin feeling fresh and moisturised, helping improve its overall appearance. What a relief after your skin’s been toyed with.

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Fingers scooping The Body Shop Vitamin E Moisture Cream

Vitamin E Moisture Cream

A bit of an icon within The Body Shop’s skincare range, our Vitamin E Moisture Cream is suitable for all skin types, even dry skin. Enriched with hyaluronic acid and raspberry seed oil, it’s perfect as your daily moisturiser, helping skin to feel hydrated, like moisture is locked in. Skin looks rested and instantly healthier, like it’s had a boost of vitamins. In the game of life, that sounds like a checkmate to us.

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Hands using The Body Shop Drops of Youth Concentrate

“I have been using this for nearly two years now, it only took a short while before I noticed the difference in my skin!”

– Glitter12

About Drops of Youth™ Youth Concentrate

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