Ni’Kita Wilson, cosmetic chemist and formulator of more than 3,500 products, shares what skin products you should be using.
What’s the next big skin-care trend?
Antipollution products. With new studies linking pollution to inflammation, acne, and wrinkles, more brands are paying attention to it. The issue is particulate matter (PM)—microscopic carbon particles from soot and traffic exhaust. PM can sink deep into skin’s dermal layer, unleashing collagen-damaging free radicals. And it doesn’t just affect city girls. Air quality in rural areas has also declined. Wind moves, so pollution does too.
How can we fix it?
We’re focusing on reversing free-radical damage. New ingredients will go beyond traditional antioxidants like vitamins A and E—which only neutralize oxygen-based free radicals (caused primarily by UV exposure) and not pollution’s nitrogen-based free radicals.
If you could invent anything, what would it be?
A 3-D printer that can scan an image of your face from when you were young, then feed that info into a machine to produce laser-like injections, restoring collagen, fat, and proteins, all in a customized way that looks natural.