There are two things you should do before any workout: stretching, and cleansing. Wearing makeup when you work out is a fast-track to a breakout. (And no, sweatproof makeup isn’t going to make it better.)
Why is wearing makeup so bad during exercise?
Dr. Neal Schultz – a New York dermatologist and host of DermTV.com – says it blocks your pores and stops skin from ‘breathing.’
When we exercise, our pores and sweat glands open up to help our body cool down. “Makeup forms a barrier on your skin covering your pores, and when working out, your makeup mixes with oil and perspiration. This clogs your skin and prevents pores from releasing sweat,” Dr. Schultz explains.
And you know what clogged pores mean – blackheads, whiteheads, pimples. Your skin can also get itchy and red. That’s not exactly the post workout glow you want!
What if I don’t have time to double cleanse before a workout?
Many women head to the gym after the office. We totally get what a hassle it can be to pack a lot of skincare products into a gym bag, especially if you’re commuting. The easiest thing to do is to cleanse at the office, but if that isn’t possible, pack makeup remover wipes.
Beauty Insider Tip: Meghan Markle uses Bioré Daily Deep Pore Cleansing Cloths to take off all the thick makeup she wears to events.
How do I keep my face clean during my workout?
Gym equipment is teeming with bacteria! Avoid touching your face when you exercise. Bring a clean towel to pat sweat off your face – and the key word here is “pat”. Scrubbing your face dry will irritate your skin, and it’s at its most sensitive when you work out.
Will sunblock clog my pores if I exercise outdoors?
It’s the lesser of two evils. Sunblock may clog your pores, but you need the UV protection. Use a high-SPF sunscreen. If you’re acne prone, look for one that is non-comedogenic. If you have sensitive skin, or are using skincare that can make your skin more sensitive to the sun (like Vitamin C, retinol or hydroquinine) check our list for best sunscreens for sensitive skin.
Beauty Insider Tip: Aside from sunblock, wear a cap for extra sun protection.
How should I cleanse after a workout?
Yes, you’re exhausted after a workout, and after a shower you just want to home and sleep. One of the bonus benefits of not wearing makeup when you workout is that since your skin’s already clean, you can just do a quick facial wash.
However, if you did wear makeup while exercising, you need to pay extra attention to cleansing. Double cleanse, get the last traces out with a toner, and exfoliate. It helps get rid of all the gunk that’s now sitting in your pores, just waiting to turn into a pimple tomorrow morning. Don’t say we didn’t warn you!
What if I really, really need to wear makeup when I exercise?
If your fitness instructor looks like Jason Momoa, we honestly wouldn’t blame you. Your best option is an oil-free, light foundation or BB cream. Instead of eyeliner, go for a very dark waterproof, silicone-based mascara. Skip powder products and go for cream blush.