How Exercise Can Affect Your Skin
If exercise improves the function of your organs, it would make sense that it would affect your skin, the largest organ in our bodies, right? The answer is yes. Working out can have positive benefits on your skin’s condition, however, there are also factors to be aware of to avoid causing irritation and acne flare ups.
When you work out, your heart rate increases and your blood vessels expand so they can pump more blood through your body. This helps boost circulation of oxygen and nutrients through the body and even to the skin. This vasodilation is responsible for the post-workout glow or, for some, temporary red flushing in the face and/or chest. The effects of this are often temporary, not lasting more than an hour.
Studies have also shown that exercise can increase the amount of collagen in the skin, however, there has not been enough research on the topic to confirm a positive relationship between the two.
Dermatologists caution that certain conditions can exacerbate skin conditions. Overheating is a common trigger for people with rosacea and eczema and can cause irritation for people who have sensitive skin. Working out indoors with a fan or air conditioning can help regulate the body’s temperature. If you workout outside, be mindful of the suns’ rays, even if it is an overcast day. Wearing a sweatproof sunscreen will help minimize the damage caused by UV rays.
Sweating is another factor that effects your skin when you work out. Showering as soon as possible after a workout will help prevent additional irritation and clogged pores, this is especially important for people with sensitive skin, eczema, and acne. Removing makeup prior to working out is also important. If you wear tight-fitting workout clothes or a sports bra, avoid wearing your workout clothes after the workout, so if you’re someone who runs errands on the way home from the gym, make sure to shower and change into a clean set of clothes.