We love to keep our melanin poppin’, but there are some cities that won’t let our skin be great.
A new study by experts in air purifiers, dehumidifiers and humidifiers at HouseFresh has revealed the best and worst cities for keeping skin healthy in the United States.
Researchers went from city to city measuring air pollution, hard water and ultraviolet light—all factors that can impact your skin.
“Skin health is something the U.S. takes very seriously, spending over $18 billion on skincare in 2021 alone—more than any other country in the world,” James Booth, the managing editor of HouseFresh, tells Newsweek. “With environmental factors such as air pollution still affecting more than 40 percent of people living in the country, the HouseFresh team wanted to find out the effects this is having on your skin and what can be done to prevent further damage.”
Researchers created the index score for 328 cities with a metric (air pollution, UV light and water hardness) that was given a weight of 33.33 to add up to 100 in total.
Cities that had cleaner air were rewarded higher scores, while those with less UV radiation and softer water received lower scores for factors like high pollution levels and more UV radiation.
“Studies have shown that air pollution, hard water and UV levels have harmful effects on our skin. For example, too much exposure to UV light can cause skin cancer and other skin conditions like solar elastosis,” Booth says.
“Air pollution can cause a variety of health problems when inhaled but it can also cause skin to age prematurely. Meanwhile, bathing in hard water can worsen problems such as eczema and psoriasis.”
According to WalletHub, skin cancer is more common than breast, colon, lung and prostate cancers combined. A report from the American Cancer Society states that more than five million new cases of skin cancer are diagnosed every year, including more than 76,000 incidences of invasive melanoma—the kind that spreads to other parts of the body.
Without further ado, here is the list of the worst cities for your skin.