Your Daily Commute Is the Latest Thing Found to Be Waging War Against Your Skin

Rachel Krause
Your Daily Commute Is the Latest Thing Found to Be Waging War Against Your Skin

As if my daily 45-minute commute wasn’t traumatizing enough already, now I—and you—have something else to worry about when it comes to underground transport. Exciting!

Under-the-radar skin-care brand Indeed Laboratories worked with a market research company called OnePoll to conduct research on roughly 2,000 women over the age of 25. The study was carried out to determine just how much we know about the everyday factors that cause skin aging on a daily basis—and they don’t mean sunbathing, but rather things such as anxiety and … worrying.

Further research in the Archives of Internal Medicine states that commuters inhale, on average, 300 times more free radicals from airborne pollution each day than they would by smoking a cigarette. Because I know that free radicals are very bad but am not entirely certain why, I googled “free radicals for dummies” and narrowed it down to this: They are molecules that lack an electron, so then they “steal” another cell’s electron, and that cell becomes a free radical, too. Stress, pollution, radiation, smoking, processed foods—they all contribute to the development of free radicals, which sets off a kind of chain reaction that creates more damaging free radicals in the body.

That doesn’t mean that you should just give up and start smoking and spending hours in the sun, too, because everything is ruining our skin all of the time (although that is kind of true). Instead, slather yourself endlessly in antioxidant-rich products that combat the detrimental effects of environmental stressors, including that pollution from your daily commute. It’s good to work those antioxidants into your diet as well, but hey, you have to start somewhere.