Post Workout Skin Care Routine
There’s nothing quite like the feeling you get after a hard workout. You’ve pushed yourself, smashed through the barriers and achieved your goals. And you’ve sweated a lot in the process. It’s that work and sweat that can leave your skin prone to irritation. So, just like you hit the post workout meal and supplementation hard, you need to think about your skin too. Just as there are many top tips to maximize your training through diet, there are many top tips to take care of your skin post workout. And here are some of the best.
If you do nothing else, which is not the best idea, make sure you wash as soon as you can after your workout. Your body will have been sweating and secreting oils throughout your session, and that can lead to irritation. Also, bacteria are easily picked up during training as you’re touching multiple surfaces and pieces of equipment that may not be completely clean.
Use this time as an opportunity to thoroughly cleanse your body in the shower. It’s not always best to hewarm or even cool water, and you’ll feel fresher and your skin will thank you too. If you can’t shower, use wipes.
Once you’ve showered and dried off (always with a clean towel – there’s no point in getting clean just to wipe grime all over yourself again) it’s onto moisturising. During your workout, your skin will have lost moisture and once you’re clean it’s going to be craving it – just like your muscles are craving protein. So, go for a light moisturiser and spread the lotion all over. It’s not just the skin on your face that needs attention.
This isn’t necessarily a follow on, more of a general requirement for your skin post workout. We’ve all had that after-shower sweat, and it’s a good indicator that your core temperature is still elevated. Don’t be afraid to hop back in the shower for a cool rinse. Or, turn on the cold tap and place your wrist under the running water. Blood is closest to the skin’s surface here, and it will help cool you down quickly. Then you can moisturise or re-moisturise if necessary.
Hydration is a huge part of performance. Ever tried intense exercise without fluids? Not a good feeling and not a good idea. And, in the same way, that hydration will help you train more efficiently, it’s vital for your skin too. So, get some water on board as soon as you finish your session and keep drinking throughout the day to stay hydrated and support your recovery.
Some final do’s and don’ts
In addition to the above main points there are a number of things that you should and shouldn’t do to help look after your skin post workout:
- Do wipe down equipment. Whether it’s at home or in the gym, leftover sweat is going to fester and potentially irritate the skin in the next session.
- Don’t walk around barefoot. Up until this point you probably haven’t given your feet a second thought. But if you’re at the gym it’s a good idea to wear flip-flops to and from the shower to protect the skin on your feet.
- Do go light on haircare products. Sweat mixed with wax, gel or whatever else you use to style your hair is not a good mix for your face. If you do go a little heavy with the product, make sure you wash it out and follow your post workout skincare routine to a tee.
- Don’t forget your hands. How aware are we all about bacteria these days? Washing your hands is essential, of course, but they’ll take a hammering during training too, so it’s good to give them a little TLC with a hand lotion after training. You can do it in the car or when you get home if you prefer.
Put these tips into practice to look after your skin post workout.