Going to the gym is supposed to be good for us – so why at times is it that when we take up exercise, our skin often seems to go in the opposite direction?? The reason is quite obvious – sweat and skin do not a happy mix make, so we end up hitting a spotty low rather than a post-workout glow from our exercise routines…
- Your sweat towel
Sweat towels can take up a lot of bacteria.You can easily spread bacteria leading to acne and skin infections by rubbing it on your face.Even if you are conscious about keeping your towel clean, you are still not immune because towels washed in harsh detergents can also make acne worse.
During your workout you should try to avoid rubbing your face repeatedly, instead allowing the sweat to evaporate on its own, and then shower off properly when you’re totally finished.
- Your refreshments
All of that sweat leaving your body can lead to another of skin’s worst enemies – dehydration – so you should always make a conscious effort to drink plenty of water both during and after your workout.
The amount of water you actually need depends a lot of variants, from how active you are to the weather outside on that particular day.Know that you don’t have to get it all in liquid form- Water-rich foods like cucumbers, celery, watermelon and iceberg lettuce can all help you to rehydrate in a good way.
- Your equipment
Yoga mats, bar weights etcit is easy to forget that every piece of gym equipment you handle has been used by a pretty number of other people before you. Each time we are coming into contact with bacteria that can cause illness and lead to acne and skin infections. Wherever possible wipe down gym equipment with some anti-bacterial wipes.
- Your environment
Let’s be clear – working out outside is a glorious thing. HOWEVER. While we might love the feeling of the sun on our faces, our faces themselves might not, so it’s important to get some protection sorted before you start it all.
If you like to exercise outside, make sure you apply a water-resistant sunscreen with at least a factor 30 before heading out, UV exposure can seriously damage your skin and is the biggest cause of premature ageing, increased risk of skin cancer and all other evil things too.
- Your swim sesh
Swimming too can have negative consequences. The high number of chemicals in chlorine can lead to tight, dry, flaky skin and can further irritate conditions. Chlorine gets into the skin cells, stripping away any water and natural oils causing the surface of the skin to dry and crack.
Just be sure to shower thoroughly once you’ve thrashed things out in the pool. Cold water is very beneficial after any exercise as it helps to prevent any swelling from the workout.
- Your make up
We have all been guilty of leaving the day’s face on when we get to the gym. But it is one of the biggest no-nos of them all, so for the sake of our skin, we need to stop please.
Cosmetics will mix with the oil from your skin, congesting the skin and preventing the pores from being able to release sweat – leading to breakouts, blackheads and more.
So add a good, nourishing cleanser to your usual kit. After all, if we are working that hard to get our bodies looking and feeling fab, it is important that we give our faces the best possible chance of doing the same.