Living in a city center is one of life’s great adventures. Not only do you have access to a smorgasbord of amazing opportunities and activities, but the hustle and bustle of the city keeps you on your toes. The city is never a boring place; there is always something to do, new people to meet, and a sense of purpose when you step out of the door in the morning. City life is awesome for getting jobs, living fast and experiencing just about everything. What better place to spend your time, particularly when you are young and without tons of responsibilities!
Nevertheless, city life comes with some downsides. There are many aspects of living in a busy area which can be detrimental to your health and wellbeing. This includes increased crime rates, heavy noise pollution and the subject we will be covering today: low air quality. The world’s biggest cities like New York and London are densely populated with both people and traffic, meaning that there is a high level of pollution in these cities, which their residents breathe in every day.
In some cities in Asia the pollution levels are so bad that residents wear special filtration masks which help them breathe as clean air as possible when they are outdoors. Luckily, most cities haven’t reached these levels yet – but there are still steps you can take to live clean in a polluted city. In this blog you’ll find tips and tricks for preserving yours and your children’s health in the face of rising pollution levels. Let’s get started!
Bring Green Things Into Your Home
No, we don’t mean green cushions and curtains, but rather actual living green things. Plants are amazing additions to any city home, for more reasons than their beautiful aesthetic. Here are some ways in which house plants can benefit your health in a city environment!
- Better airflow. Plants breathe, just like humans do – but instead of breathing in oxygen, they breathe in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. This means that filling your city apartment with gorgeous house plants increases the oxygen levels in your home, helping you to breathe easily.
- The color green helps your mental health. Psychologists have discovered that looking at the color green can benefit your brain by producing a calming effect similar to the way we feel when we are in nature. Having plants in your city home can get you away from the buzz and the stony grey and into a more natural state of being.
Invest in an Air Purifier
In a city apartment, even a thoroughly clean one, there will be residual exhaust fumes and city grime from the street outside. This means that even inside the safety of your own home, you will still be breathing in polluted air containing high levels of carbon dioxide. It’s like smoking ten cigarettes a day, just by breathing the air in your home and on the street outside. Gross, right? For this reason, it is a great idea to invest in an air purifier!
Air purifiers are an amazing investment if you live in an urban environment. This is because air purifiers not only remove particles containing nasty toxins from the air, but they also sanitize the particles too. Air purifiers come in many shapes, sizes and price points, so there is definitely one out there for you! Brands such as Molekule have awesome purifiers which not only work wonders, but also look stylish in your home too. Check out Molekule on Facebook to find out how you could clean the air in your city home.
Even if you love living in a city, the busy intensity of city life can wear you down. For your lungs, city life is also super tiring; your body will be working much harder just to breathe, due to the amount of dirt, chemicals and pollutants in the air. For this reason, it is a good idea to escape the city once a month or more, to greener pastures which will provide you with the clean air your body is craving.
If this sounds like an expensive endeavor – after all, we can’t all afford a monthly break in the countryside – try exploring your city’s parks. City parks are still, well, in the city; nevertheless, these amazing green spaces give you respite from the concrete streets and help you get back to nature again. Here are some beautiful parks in some of the biggest cities around the world.
- London’s Hyde Park. Located near to Buckingham Palace, this amazing, huge green park is perfect for a stroll when city life is becoming too much of a burden. In parts of Hyde Park, it’ll feel like you aren’t in the city at all!
- New York’s Central Park. Stroll around Central Park and attempt to find the fountain in the intro to Friends, or discover nooks and cranies of this beautiful green park that you had never seen before. Perfect for sunbathing in the summer, Central Park is an essential facet of the New York lifestyle.
- Berlin’s Tiergarten. This sprawling park next to the famous Reichstag in the historic city of Berlin will make you feel like you’ve left the city altogether. A gorgeous woodland park, the Tiergarten will help you breathe easily, even in the city center.
- The Imperial Palace East Garden in Tokyo. Tokyo city center is another level of busy. You might feel a little overwhelmed, especially if you are new to Tokyo. To escape the buzz and give your lungs a break, visit the stunning Imperial Palace East Garden.
Ditch The Cigarettes
Living in a city is hard enough on your lungs, so the other aspects of your health routine should make up for it. If you live in a city and still smoke cigarettes, you are giving your lungs a double-whammy attack. A 2019 study showed that living in a busy city is as bad for you as smoking. Fast Company reports, ‘If you live in a city with high ozone levels for a decade, the results are similar to smoking a pack of cigarettes daily for three decades.’ Pretty shocking, right?
Therefore if you live in a city and want to stay, make sure you get going with the process of quitting smoking. This can be long and arduous, but is essential for making sure you protect your lungs from further damage.
High Quality Skincare
So, it turns out that it isn’t just your lungs that suffer in the city. The skin on your face, which is thinner and more delicate than the skin on the rest of your body, suffers tremendously at the hands of city pollution. The dirt and grime in the air can block your pores, increasing blackheads and blemishes. Additionally, your skin might become dried out from all the toxins it faces, increasing the appearance of wrinkles. If you don’t combat this with good quality skincare, you could start seeing the detrimental effects of the city on your face when you look in the mirror.
How can you make sure your skincare is doing the most for your city-living skin? Here are some key tips.
- Look for salycylic acid in your cleansers. Salycylic acid is an ingredient featured in some foaming cleansers, and it is the key ingredient for tackling city dirt on your face. Salycylic acid goes deep into your pores, cleaning them out thoroughly and making sure there is no residual dirt or oil left. For those of you who are out and about in the city each day, this is an essential ingredient.
- Apply a once-a-week clay mask. Clay masks are amazing for your skin when they are used on a regular basis – but not so often that they dry out your skin. The natural properties in clay will draw out dirt and toxins that are sitting in your pores and clogging them up. You might experience some breakouts for the first few weeks that you use clay masks; that means it’s working! The toxins are being drawn out, and as a result, spots pop up. This, however, won’t last long if you continue to use the clay mask on a weekly basis.
- Hydrating, protective moisturizers. Applying treatments like this can make your skin dry, so ensure you protect it with hydrating moisturisers.
- Regular exfoliation. Exfoliating your skin every single day isn’t a good idea, but twice a week, it’s beneficial to your skin to exfoliate with a formula that contains tiny grains. These exfoliants go a little deeper than a regular cleanser, making sure that no stone is left unturned when it comes to cleaning dirt out of your pores.
Living in a city center is life-changing for many people, and this experience shouldn’t be ruined by poor air quality. That’s why you should follow these helpful guidelines which help your body to cope with high pollution levels, and let you get on with your exciting city life.