More than a third of Brits reporting skin issues caused by air pollution

Published 21st Mar 2024 by Ellen Cummings

Over 70% of Brits are worried about the effects of air pollution on their skin, according to new research conducted by Westfield’s How We Shop platform.

Over a third (38%) of Brits believe they have experienced skin problems due to air pollution with prevalent issues among Brits including dry skin (54%), increased dirtiness (45%), blemishes (21%), and early signs of ageing (20%).  

As concerns among UK consumers continue to mount, the report indicates that significant shifts in daily skincare routines are being undertaken to mitigate the adverse effects of air pollution. 

Notably, a third of Brits (31%) have transitioned to using gentle cleansers designed to remove pollutants without stripping natural oils.

While women continue to lead in the adoption of anti-pollution skincare products (57%), 43% of surveyed men have also begun investing in an anti-pollution skin care routine, including products containing vitamin C and ferulic acid.

Individuals aged 30-44 are the most frequent purchasers of these items, with leading brands including professional skincare brands such as Dermalogica and Elemis, according to the survey.

Residents of urban areas bear the brunt of air pollution's detrimental effects – over a quarter (29%) of individuals surveyed expressed a willingness to relocate to rural areas in pursuit of better skin health.

The findings support the World Health Organisation's claim that more than 99% of the global population resides in regions where pollution levels exceed its guidelines.

In the UK, urban areas such as Greater Manchester, London, the West Midlands and South Wales register as the regions most afflicted by elevated pollution levels.

Westfield, home of Sephora in the UK, is offering complimentary consultations with leading skin expert and Aesthetic Medicine Awards 2024 finalist, Dr Ifeoma Ejikeme, at its two London centres. 

The collaboration aims to educate shoppers about the specific impacts air pollution has on their skin and give tailored recommendations on products and routines to boost their skin health.

Dr Ejikeme, founder and medical director at the Adonia Clinic, said, “In the face of escalating pollution levels, our skin becomes the frontline target of environmental aggression. 

“The latest insights from Westfield underscore the pressing need to strengthen our skincare routine against the unseen threats lurking in our air. 

“As we navigate through urban landscapes shrouded in pollution, let us not just shield our skin but empower it to withstand these challenges.”

Sarah Fearon, head of marketing UK at Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, said, “Our latest How We Shop research unveiled that 67% of Brits will invest more in products that shield against air pollution if they understand its impact on their skin. 

“This highlights people's desire to actively seek solutions to protect their skin, whether by adjusting their daily routines or investing in specialised products tailored to combat pollution.

This growing environmental consciousness is reshaping consumer attitudes and behaviours towards skincare.”

The Beauty Edit event arrives at Westfield London on March 28 and offers shoppers a free expert skin consultation, workshops, express manicures and more. 

You might also like:

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Ellen Cummings

Ellen Cummings

Published 21st Mar 2024

Ellen Cummings is the senior content writer at Professional Beauty, working across the magazine and online. Contact her at [email protected]

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