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How Exercise Benefits Your Skin

Most people understand that exercise is necessary for a healthy body. It increases your strength and endurance, helps your heart and lungs stay healthy, and can even help you stave off serious medical issues, like blood sugar and blood pressure issues. Quite a few people also understand the direct correlation between exercise and improved mood or mental health.

Not as many people realize that exercise can actually help your skin as well. If you aren’t exercising for the bodily benefits, perhaps learning about how it can help your complexion will get you motivated to start moving.

At first it can seem counter-intuitive. After all, sweating can clog up your pores and melt off your makeup. Exertion can flush you, which can make issues like rosacea and acne seem more visibly obvious. If you prefer to exercise outside, all that solar exposure can lead to sun burn or worse, sun damage and wrinkles. Thankfully, that’s simple enough to protect against. Make sure you’re using a good sunscreen, with at least SPF 25. For those with fair skin, pick a higher SPF. You need to reapply every two hours while you’re outside to ensure your skin isn’t getting damaged.

The Reason That Exercise Helps Your Skin

Once you’ve taken the necessary step of preventing sun damage while you exercise, you can start focusing on how exercise may actually benefit your skin. It’s quite simply a result of increased and improve blood flow and circulation. When you exercise, your heart rate increases. Your blood flow increases too, which means that more blood will reach your skin cells. These cells are then nourishes with oxygen and other vital nutrients, helping them remain healthy. Additionally, the better your blood flow, the faster your circulatory system can take care of the waste products your cells are producing.

This process can reduce a number of harmful compounds, including free radicals, in your skin cells. Your skin can’t clean and detoxify itself. Waste products and free radicals have to be sent to the liver to be handled. Better blood flow means faster removal of these unwanted compounds.

Toning your muscles can help you look healthier and younger overall. The appearance of sagging skin or certain wrinkles may be improved by regular exercise.

Exercising Also Reduces Stress-Related Issues

As mentioned earlier, regular exercise is correlated with reduced stress and improved mental health. Stress may be something you experience emotionally and mentally, but it impacts you physically. Both acne and eczema can be caused or exacerbated by stress. Scientists aren’t completely sure why this is, but initial studies show that the sebaceous glands are often affected by stress. These glands produce oil on our skin, particularly our faces. The oilier your face becomes, the more likely you are to have issues with acne.

A Note on Skin Issues Exercise Can Cause

Chafing, which is redness and irritation that comes from skin being regularly rubbed, can result from repetitive actions and the wrong workout wardrobe. If it isn’t addressed quickly, chafing can cause rashes which are far from attractive. Wear well-fitted, moisture-wicking clothing to keep sweat away from your skin and keep your skin as healthy as possible when working out. Beyond chafing, if you’re wearing heavy makeup or failing to wash off sweat after a workout, you may experience increased acne on your face and body. Committing to a post-workout shower will minimize this issue.

If you have rosacea, eczema or psoriasis, exercise can temporarily increase issues or symptoms. For those with rosacea, the best prevention of issues due to increased temperature and flushing is to work out in a cool space. Applying a cold compress to flared regions after exercise will also help. Both eczema and psoriasis react to the presence of salt on the skin from sweat. Apply lotion before exercising, and try to reduce sweating, as showering too much can dry the skin and cause further issues.