Exercising outdoors is refreshing, especially during the summer months when the sunshine feels extra comforting.
Not to mention, there are several benefits to exercising outdoors, such as boosting one’s mood and reducing stress. However, try not to get too carried away with improving your strength or hitting your cardio goals that you forget to protect your skin.
You may be used to a normal skincare routine for indoor gyms, but being outside means you’re more exposed to the sun and other environmental stressors.
As such, you’ll definitely need to adapt some skincare habits to prevent damage.
So before you go for that jog, here are some tips to take care of your skin while exercising outdoors.
Don’t forget sun protection
Sunscreen is very important when exercising outside, as it protects against discoloration, sunburn, and even skin cancer.
If you’re thinking about the heavy, sticky lotions you typically use for the beach, you’ll be happy to know that there are now sunscreens made for active lifestyles.
These formulas are oil-free, but also water- and sweat-resistant. Plus, ingredients like zinc oxide give high broad-spectrum protection and aren’t irritating on the skin.
Aside from sunscreen, there is now workout gear that has SPF properties as well, such as t-shirts with UV protection.
Optimize your skincare routine
If you’re spending excessive time exercising outdoors, then you need to adjust your skincare routine to suit your lifestyle. For one, you need to take extra care when cleansing, and your normal face wash may not be enough.
Consider double-cleansing with an oil-based cleanser first, as this can effectively remove grime, SPF, and sweat.
After spending all that time under the sun, you may also want to use skin brightening products to combat dark spots, discoloration, and sun damage from environmental aggressors. Ingredients like vitamin C are ideal for this. Moreover, you should also consider the activity you’ll be doing when adjusting your routine.
For instance, if you’reswimming, put a pre-bath oil on your skin before entering the water to keep your skin hydrated and protected from pool chemicals and other pollutants.
Skip the makeup
There’s nothing wrong with wearing makeup to feel better. However, cosmetics and exercising don’t go well together. When you workout, you produce sebum and a lot of sweat, and these are released through your pores.
But if you cover your pores with makeup, your skin won’t be able to breathe — making you prone to breakouts due to all the trapped dirt and other irritants.
If you absolutely must wear makeup, at least ensure that it’s lightweight and labelled ‘non-comedogenic’ (that means it won’t clog your pores).
Always stay hydrated
Exercise equals sweat. And because you’re under the sun, it’s likely that you’ll be sweating much more. It’s a given that you should replace all that lost water by drinking water during and after your workout, not just before.
Your hydration levels don’t just affect your performance; it affects your skin, too. Dehydrated skin appears dry, tight, and flaky, making it look less vibrant and supple.
Because it lacks flexibility, it’s easier for you to get cuts and scrapes, too. On the other hand, hydrated skin is plumper, supple, and less susceptible to injuries.
Wash your face after your workout
When you exercise, sweat and oil accumulate on your face — and you also get all those germs and bacteria from the air and from touching your face to wipe away sweat.
Letting it stay on your face can cause breakouts. As a solution, washing your face after your workout will remove the residue. Splashing cool water on your face can also return your skin temperature to normal more quickly, and this will prevent blood vessels from breaking.
Make sure to have a gentle moisturizer and cleanser to get rid of the residue that water alone cannot remove.