Is Your Office AC Ruining Your Skin? Here’s Our Hot Take

Office AC

Yes, AC is important, especially when you live in a tropical country like ours. Nothing like walking into a centrally conditioned office/ mall/ restaurant after a daunting commute. And while office AC is comforting and pleasing, and keeps make-up in place, it’s doing terrible things to your skin like making it dry, dull, lifeless, dehydrated, and even causing wrinkles.

The air controlled by an office AC has zero moisture content, ie it’s absolutely dry. And when the air gets dry, it tends to compensate by sucking out moisture from objects within the room. This can lead to increased water loss from the epidermis or the upper layer of the skin, causing less water retention within these layers. This results in dry skin and hair, chapping of lips, dry eyes and premature ageing of the skin. Dry air can dehydrate skin which makes fine lines and wrinkles more prominent, and can also aggravate skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, allergies and rosacea.

Ideally, you should not spend more than two or three hours at a stretch indoors. While this is unavoidable in the office, at home, turn on the AC only when it’s really hot and keep it on only for a bit. There’s not much you can do in centrally air-conditioned offices, considering you spend around eight to nine hours at your desk. Before you get stuck in the dilemma of good skin vs controlled humidity, these basic tips will help you minimise the risks of spending time in the office AC, and you can enjoy the best of both worlds.

1. Keep A Cream Handy


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Apply a rich moisturiser every two hours, or every time your skin feels dry. Make sure it’s not a heavy cream as that make skin greasy. Opt for products that contain hyaluronic acid, glycerin and vitamin E. Don’t forget exposed areas like hands, elbows, feet and knees.

2. Avoid Direct Exposure to Office AC

Don’t sit directly in front of the AC vent as the direct blasts of cold air are the worst for the skin. Also, ensure AC filters are cleaned regularly to avoid unclean air.

3. Change Your Cleanser

Move away from soap-based cleansers, and add cream and non-foaming face washes to your routine. A gentle soap-free cleanser will ensure your skin doesn’t lose its natural oils which is beneficial to keep skin in good shape.

4. Get A Humidifier

Keep a humidifier on your desk to reduce dryness. An easier alternative is to keep a bowl full of water in the room. Or simply find a large vase and keep it filled. This K-beauty hack ensures that the hydration levels in your skin is up at all times, regardless of the drying affect of the office AC. 

5. Pamper With Oil Massages


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Once a week, indulge in an oil massage. It will ensure oil penetrates deep into your skin and keeps it protected from harsh dry air. Also, include hydrating facials and nourishing masks as at-home treatments. When choosing a facial oil, make sure to pick one according to your skin type. 

6. Monitor The Temperature

The ideal temperature setting is the one closest to room temperature. Our skin has its own thermal regulating system. The skin tries to maintain its hydration level by releasing sweat and oil, and this happens smoothly when the temperature is around 25 to 30°c.

Pictures: Instagram, Pexel

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