We all know that exercising has many benefits for your health and body. It already starts with drinking more water. But training on a regular basis also comes along with a risk for your skin. There are habits in the gym that can cause your skin problems and you probably don’t even realize it! (I literally did ALL of these things) It requires special care for us girls who lift to get the most out of your skin:
1. You are touching your face
We all know this feeling. The feeling of sweat dripping down your face. Ooooooh it tickles. And when you’re lucky, it will find it’s a way to your eyes and that salty water HURTS like hell. So what do you do? Wipe that sweat out of your face with your hand. STOP. STOP IT RIGHT THERE. Because rule number one is NEVER EVER TOUCH YOUR FACE IN THE GYM WITH YOUR HANDS! Why? (if you’re eating while reading this I suggest you finish your meal first ok)
Everything you touch in the gym is covered with other people’s sweat and bacteria. The ropes, the barbells, the metallic things on the treadmill, BACTERIA. Which is obvious because people sweat in a gym. It only becomes a problem for your skin when you touch your face with the same hands that touched all of the equipment. To clean/dry your face, use a (clean!) towel instead. Yes, I said a CLEAN towel because that’s how we get to the next common skincare mistake:
2. You don’t use a clean towel
I used to change my gym towel like once a week. I just left it in my gym bag and used it every day, over and over again. So yeah I was basically using a towel for my face with 5-7 day sweat on it. And that’s not all folks, I wiped my face with that same towel that I put on the benches too. I swear I did not think twice about this habit. So after this awkward story let me tell you 1. you’re not the only one, been there done that 2. now you know better. Use a clean towel EVERY time you go to the gym. Only use that towel to dry your face. Do not put it on the ground or on the dirty benches/mats. Use it very carefully and for your face ONLY.
3. You don’t wash your hands after a workout
So, you all done with your workout and heading to the changing room. When you take a shower at the gym, this mistake will not be so common for you. But some of us girls, like me, like to shower at home. Probably because my stomach always wins so I would like to eat first and shower after (I workout in the afternoon/night). When you don’t shower at the gym, you probably pack your stuff from your locker and head home. And you think you are alone. But guess what; you’re NOT ALONE. Because all that sweat and bacteria we talked about before is still on your hands and ready to join you on everything you touch. So, before you head home after your workout, wash your hands! Yes, also if you wear workout gloves.
4. You don’t wash your face after every workout
During your workout, your pores will be clogging up because you sweat. To keep your skin fresh and healthy, wash your face with a proper face wash after every workout. I would recommend washing your face every morning and evening but after every workout is definitely a must. It will clean your pores and remove bacteria. It doesn’t have to be a fancy nancy face wash, just be sure you find the right one for your type of skin!
5. You don’t wash your workout gear on a regular base
As a weightlifter, we all use workout gear. (If you would like to know which workout gear you need for weightlifting, click here!) But an important aspect we tend to forget: clean your stuff! Clean your weightlifting gloves, sweatband, cap or even your headphones one a regular base. Because they will also be covered in sweat and bacteria that can cause skin problems like acne. Stuff like gloves and sweatbands can easily put into the washing machine. You can clean your headphones with hygiene wipes.
6. You’re leaving your make-up on
When you going to the gym after work or anything it’s very common that you will have your make-up on. Or, if you suffer from acne, it occurs that you will wear foundation to the gym because you simply don’t feel confident with a bare face. And I absolutely get it! I used to wear foundation every day to the gym. It took me MONTHS to have the balls to show up with a bare face (and yes they frequently asked me if I was sick or hangover). But trust me, it’s better to workout without having your face covered in foundation (things like mascara, eyeliner, etc. are no harm to wear during a workout). Also, you will have noticed by now that you will sweat off your foundation anyway. But the main problem is that foundation is clogging up your pores. Which will eventually cause skin problems like acne. Which will lead to more foundation to cover it. So, enter the gym with a bare and clean face to avoid this common mistake.
So, here’s a little sum-up of the most common mistakes to avoid in the gym:
1. Don’t touch your face during your workout
2. Use a clean towel every workout
3. Wash your hands after every workout
4. Wash your face with a facewash after your workout
5. Wash your workout gear on a regular base
6. Don’t wear foundation/powder during your workout
It may look like a long list of bad habits but trust me, they are very easy to change and become new habits in no time! Are there any skincare tips you live by? Let me know in the comments below and help a girl out!