What happens to your skin when you work out

28 Mar 2023
What happens to your skin when you work out

In recent years, the surge in yoga and fitness centers, along with a proliferation of marathons and running events, has brought attention to the relationship between physical activity and skin health. It's natural to wonder if your brand-new exercise routine would affect your skin's appearance and health.

Boost in Blood Circulation and Skin Health

Yes, exercise, particularly routines that increase blood flow, plays a significant role in skin health. Regular exercise, like high-intensity interval training or endurance exercises, increases heart rate and promotes blood circulation. This not only delivers oxygen and nutrients to skin cells but also enhances the removal of waste products. The result? That certain glow often seen post-workout. Dermatologist Dr. Ellen Marmur explains, "Anything that promotes healthy circulation also keeps your skin healthy and vibrant," which is evident in the post-workout glow many experience.

Sweating It Out: Good for Skin?

Sweating during exercise, much like the experience in a sauna, acts as a natural detox for your skin. It helps unclog pores, releasing trapped dirt and oil. This is particularly beneficial for people with oily skin or acne-prone skin. However, it's crucial to shower immediately after exercising to prevent these impurities from resettling or clogging pores, which can lead to skin problems like acne breakouts.

Exercise and Cell Renewal

Physical activity encourages better cell growth and skin regeneration. Increased perspiration and blood circulation during exercise ensure that skin cells receive the necessary oxygen and nutrients. This cellular activity contributes to a healthy skin renewal process, improving overall skin health.

Lymphatic Activation and Skin Types

Exercise sets your lymphatic system in motion, vital for eliminating toxins from the body. This activation helps in reducing water retention and puffiness, especially around the eyes. However, for those with sensitive skin, the increased blood flow and perspiration can sometimes lead to skin issues like irritation or flare-ups. Therefore, post-exercise skin care, tailored to different skin types, becomes essential.

Exercise and Sun Exposure

While exercise has numerous benefits, it's important to consider factors like sun exposure, especially during outdoor workouts. Prolonged sun exposure without adequate protection can lead to skin damage, including risks of skin cancer. Always apply sunscreen and wear moisture-wicking clothing to protect your skin.

Mental Health and Skin

The benefits of exercise extend beyond physical health. Regular physical activity can reduce stress and promote mental health, which in turn can lead to less stress-induced skin conditions like acne or dry skin.

Conclusion: Exercise and Skincare

In summary, exercise offers a plethora of benefits for skin health, from increasing blood flow and promoting healthy skin to aiding in the detoxification process and improving overall health. However, it's crucial to adapt your skincare routine to accommodate these changes. Using gentle cleansers, applying topical creams as needed, and paying attention to your skin's needs can help you maintain glowing, clean skin.