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Whether you just crushed it at an indoor cycling class, managed to run a few miles, or tested your flexibility in yoga, once you finish focusing on your fitness routine, it’s time to pay attention to your skin. After exercising, you may feel inclined to curl up and take a nice nap, but before you do that, you should really cleanse and moisturize your skin. Don’t worry, your post-gym skin care routine won’t be nearly as hard as your workout. Keep reading to find out our best tips for cleansing and moisturizing your skin after working up a sweat.
When you hit the locker room after a vigorous sweat session, your first stop should be at the sink. Your hands have likely touched countless pieces of equipment and who knows what else by the time you’ve finished working out, so thoroughly wash them before moving on to the rest of your skin care routine.
Of course, you’ll want to cleanse your face after exercising to help remove any sweat from the surface of your skin. Instead of being stuck with whatever’s offered in the locker room, or without a cleanser at all, pack a travel-friendly cleanser with you in your gym bag. Micellar water is a great pick. It’s powered by tiny micelles—oil molecules—that act as a magnet to lift dirt, oil, and makeup up and away from your skin, without the need to rinse. Simply saturate a cotton pad, wipe the pad across your face, and you’re ready to move on to the next step in your post-workout skin care routine. Have your pick from the L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser for Normal to Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser for Normal to Dry Skin, and L’Oréal Paris Micellar Cleansing Water Complete Cleanser Waterproof – All Skin Types.
Once you’ve wiped your face with micellar water and stripped off your sweaty clothes, head into the shower to get your body clean. Help remove sweat and other impurities from the surface of your skin by cleansing your body with a gentle cleanser. Lather up, then rinse off completely before hopping out. When you’re finished, don’t put your sweaty workout gear back on. Instead, keep a fresh change of clothes in your gym bad to throw on post-shower.
Any time you cleanse, it’s a good idea to moisturize afterwards. Just like you keep refilling your water bottle to help stay hydrated, providing your skin with hydration is key. So try a water-based moisturizer, like the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal/Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal/Dry Skin, or L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Extra Dry Skin. They’re formulated with hyaluronic acid and aloe vera water to help provide long-lasting hydration. Don’t forget about your body, though—while your skin is still slick from the shower, massage a hydrating body cream or lotion on to help lock in hydration.
If you’re a morning workout kind of girl, then stash your sunscreen in your bag before leaving for the gym—and reapply it after you’ve moisturized. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), you should apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher each day as directed—and reapply at least every two hours (or immediately after swimming or sweating). You should also take other sun protection measures such as limiting your amount of time in the sun (especially between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., which are peak hours), seeking shade, and covering up exposed areas in pants, long sleeves, UV-blocking sunglasses, and a broad-brimmed hat.
Now that you know how to care for your skin post-workout, check out our article, The 6 Best Hairstyles to Wear to the Gym.