by Amanda Etkind
We all know the importance of exercise. It’s been ingrained in our brains since elementary school gym class to get some sort of movement in daily for both our mental and physical health. Yes, it’s good for our mind, body, soul, and skin to get our heart rates going, but breaking a sweat without properly caring for your complexion afterwards can actually cause breakouts, irritation, and more. That’s why we’ve gathered the best plan of attack for post-workout skin care to keep you glowing strong. Keep reading to find out more.
Always Wash Your Face
If you’re anything like us, you likely need to take a breather after a particularly intense sweat session, which often leads to scrolling through Instagram and TikTok in drenched workout gear. But before you do this—we’re guilty of it too!—it’s important to rinse your face with water and cleanse to remove any bacteria, oils, and sweat that is sitting on your skin. Dr. Rita Linkner, a New York-based dermatologist at Spring Street Dermatology told HuffPost.com, “It’s very important to clean skin gently following a workout to remove bacteria and sweat residue that accumulated during your workout.” Even if you’re not near a sink, our Clean Scene Micellar Gel is a great rinse-free option to have on hand. The gel micellar texture gently rids the skin of any makeup (although, we don’t recommend working out in your makeup), dirt, oil, and impurities — no rinsing required or residue left behind. To use, apply a quarter sized amount onto a cotton pad, sweep across, face, neck, eyes, and repeat until your skin feels clean and fresh.
Shower Right Away
Like we mentioned above, removing the dirt and sweat that you’ve accumulated during your workout is essential to keeping your skin in the clear—and this goes for your body, too. Sitting in your gym clothes all day can cause bacteria to build up in areas where you’ve been sweating, and in turn, cause body acne and skin irritation. To combat this, it’s best to rinse off pretty much right away in the shower using a mild soap post-workout. If you can’t, try using a body wipe in those specific areas, and change into fresh clothes to ensure you’re squeaky clean from top-to-toe.
Stick to Lukewarm Water
You ever hit the shower after a long beach day, turn on the faucet, and have too-hot water strike your skin? That sensation is definitely less than pleasant. The feeling is similar to when you wash your face with hot water right after a workout. Basically, your pores dilate when you workout to release sweat. Using cool or lukewarm water alleviates any discomfort, helps to close up your pores, and lessens the opportunity for more dirt and grime to sneak its way back in.
Skip The Harsh Scrub, But Do Exfoliate
If you feel like your face wash didn’t fully get your face clean after your walk, run, or virtual dance class, try adding an exfoliant into the mix. Since your pores are dilated and your face is likely pretty heated, it’s important that you don’t just slap just any old physical exfoliant on your skin. Stick to chemical exfoliating toners, or pre-soaked pads that contain AHAs/BHAs/PHAs. These are particularly helpful for penetrating your pores removing any oil or excess dirt that has built up without rubbing your skin raw. You can even try this under your arms, on the nape of your neck, and chest area if you feel that those areas could use a little help too. We love the Texture Magic Exfoliating Toner for this. Its powerful, yet gentle formula—no really, it’s perfect for even the most sensitive skin types—instantly rids the skin of build up without stripping away natural oils.
Use A Facial Spray
There’s nothing quite like a mid-day facial mist moment to wake us up after a particularly long Zoom session with our boss, but these soothing formulas also serve as the ideal post-workout pick-me-ups for our skin, too. Many facial sprays contain soothing ingredients like aloe, rose and cucumber which help to calm down redness and irritation. Just be wary of any that have harsh acids or essential oils that can further irritate red skin.
Make Sure To Moisturize
Just like your body needs ample water post-workout, your skin needs it too. As you’re getting your sweat on, you lose water through your pores, which is why replenishing your hydration levels is so important. Opt for moisturizers, oils, and serums that are rich in hydrating ingredients like hyaluronic acid or glycerin to rehydrate skin like our Water Jelly Dew Cream. This quick-absorbing gel-cream is packed with over 20% humectants to provide heavyweight hydration with a lightweight texture. The high amount of humectants help to lock water into skin and the gel texture delivers a burst of hydration on contact to soothe sensitive and dry skin types that may be more vulnerable after a workout.
Consider yourself (and your complexion!) armed and ready for your next intense workout session. Your move, hot yoga.