If you are prone to chronic breakouts or dry skin, your workout may be to blame. However, you do not need to choose between good skin and a good workout, because there are many steps that you can take to make sure that your skin stays as healthy as possible, no matter how hard you work out.
Before Your Workout
Stay Sun Safe
Before you begin your workout, it can help to take preventative measures for your skin. If you will be working out outside, make sure that you put on sunscreen. This helps prevent future skin damage. If you are especially susceptible to the sun, it may be a good idea to wear a hat or visor to help protect your face from the sun. It is also a good idea to use a hair tie or headband to make sure that your hair is out of your face. This will help your skin breathe, and your sweat will evaporate more easily during your workout.
Take off your makeup before you begin your workout. This can be a daunting process if you are feeling self-conscious about your skin, but makeup mixed with sweat can block your pores and cause future acne breakouts and increased skin irritation. Furthermore, wearing makeup while you work out can psychologically impede your workout: you will not push yourself to your full athletic potential if you are worrying about your make-up smearing. When you feel self-conscious about the way you look while working out, try to shift your focus to workout goals.
Keep Your Hands Off
If you are working out at a gym, there are several steps you can take before you even go home. First, make sure you wash your hands before touching your face. While it is always a good idea to wash your hands before any skincare regiment, this is especially true at the gym, where the equipment is usually used too frequently to be very sanitary. This also means that you should touch your face as little as possible during your workout.
After Your Workout
Use a Gentle Cleanser
After you have washed your hands, wash your face with a gentle face wash. It can help to keep a travel-sized face wash in your gym bag, so that you will always be able to use it right away. This is not the time for a deep, exfoliating scrub, as that could irritate your skin more. Your skin is especially sensitive right after you work out, so don’t scrub it too much or use a face wash that further irritates your skin. You just need to make sure you washed the sweat and any dirt off. Because of how sensitive your skin is, you do not want to use water that is too hot or too cold. Instead you should use lukewarm water, as it will be the most gentile for your skin.
Hydrate Your Skin
As people who have chronic dry skin know, you want to make sure your skin stays hydrated. After all, when you sweat you are losing water. Therefore, it is important for your skin as well as your whole body that you are drinking lots of fluids to re-hydrate yourself. Drying out your skin causes increased sebum production, which can exacerbate acne and other build-ups. If your skin feels dry, or if it is prone to dryness, you definitely put on moisturizer to help keep your skin hydrated. However, moisturizer can benefit even those who do not have dry skin, and it is always a good idea to use a moisturizer with SPF to protect your skin in the long term. Even private parts need hydration for which you can use vaginal creams and other remedies.
Avoid Hot Showers
If you are working out outside, there are still steps you can take to protect your skin after your workout. Although it may be tempting, don’t jump into a steaming, hot shower as soon as you get home. If you do not want to take a lukewarm shower, you should wash your face with lukewarm water when you get home but wait until your skin feels less inflamed before you take a shower.
Don’t Forget to Drink Water
Additionally, just like when you’re at the gym, make sure you stay hydrated. If you are working out for an extended period of time, keep water nearby. If you are going on a run, it is more difficult to have water on you. If you are running for under an hour, drink water as soon as you are back home. If you run for longer than that, try to find water fountains or other places where you can get water along your route. Drinking water consistently is good for your skin and good for your workout endurance.
By consistently using these skincare tips, you should see improvements to your skin in no time! Taking care of your skin is an important element of self-care, so take the time to give your skin what it needs, and it will pay off. Not only will your skin likely improve, but your workouts will improve as well.