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Skincare Guide – How to Purify the Air

Updated on March 12, 2011

In an ideal world the air would be as pure as nature intended. We feel energised simply being near the sea or in the mountains where the air is clear. Breaths of fresh air bring a blush of healthy colour to our cheeks and make our skin feel alive.

Nowadays, however, the air we breathe is often laden with stuff that shouldn't be there. Industry pours environmental pollutants into the atmosphere on a grand scale. Cars pump out fumes containing a cocktail of chemicals includ­ing carbon monoxide which actively competes with oxygen for hemoglobin. Other noxious chemicals include nitrogen oxide and hydrocar­bons which irritate the lungs, trigger asthma attacks, exacerbate chest troubles and increase vulnerability to respiratory infections. In the presence of strong sunlight these chemicals react to make ozone which creates a hazy petrochem­ical smog that hangs in the air on hot summer days and causes breathing difficulties.

If you live in a traffic-congested city where air pollution is high, your skin and other tissues too may not receive their full quota of energising oxygen.

Anaemia may also be due to a lack of vitamins B12 and folic acid. Vitamin B12 occurs naturally in animal foods such as meat, liver, dairy products and eggs. Spirulina and seaweed are the only plant exceptions. Lush leafy vegetables are an excellent source of iron, vitamin C and folic acid, so eat lots of spinach and greens to keep your skin well oxygenated.

Purify the air

  • Surround yourself with plants and flowers. While we take in oxygen (02) and breathe out carbon dioxide (C02) plants do it the other way around. They absorb our C02 and release pure 02 back into the air. A NASA study has also found that house plants clear the air of indoor chemicals. Spider plants and peace lilies are particularly effective.
  • Detox your home. Indoor air can be ten times as polluted as that outdoors. Chemical pollutants come from household materials such as paints, plastics, varnishes and glues. We add to the load by spraying the air with aerosol cleaners, synthetic air-fresheners and other chemically laden household products.
  • Use pure and simple cleaning methods. Use a powerful vacuum cleaner to suck away the dust and dirt. Clean surfaces with a damp cloth soaked in water with a few drops of antiseptic lemon or lavender essential oil. Use good old-fashioned beeswax to buff up wooden furniture.
  • Avoid synthetic fragrances in soaps, perfume and other scented products. They are now so over­used that scientists can detect them in the air. Opt for pure plant essential oils to scent your skin and your home. They are better for you and the air we all breathe.
  • Give up smoking. Like car fumes, cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide which deprives all the body's tissues of their rightful oxygen supply. Every inhalation also creates thousands of wrinkle-forming free radicals. No wonder smoking makes skin look dull and ten years older than its age.


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