Live Long And Perspire


So there's good news, and there's bad news. The good news is sweating is not, on the whole, terrible for your skin. And why would it be? As we've discussed, it's natural and there's not a whole lot we can do to stop it, so better settle in and get comfortable. Beyond good news, though, is that there are studies that show that the act of sweating not only removes impurities from your skin, but can help protect it from bacteria like E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus by secreting a rather nifty natural antibiotic called Dermcidin. Now you can rest easy knowing that sweating is not only natural, but it's also marginally beneficial for your whole skin environment. There had to be a reason spas have relied on steam rooms and saunas for so many years—sweating can clear you out and help you get that internal glow that feels more organic than just about any other treatment.

But there is bad news being that letting sweat sit on your skin for any prolonged length of time can be problematic. This is mostly due to good intentions: Sweat carries with it the grime of what's built up in your pores and what's on your face, and if it settles back into your skin—no good. Breakouts, milia, rashes...the triumvirate of irritated skin.

But you didn't come here to get lectured; you came here for a solution. And it's pretty simple: Clean your face. Before and immediately after (or as close to immediately after as you can get) any situation in which you might perspire. The first step can be kept simple. Wear a little less makeup! Or at the very least, makeup that's on the lighter side, so as not to preemptively clog pores that are already actively trying not to be clogged. If you're exercising, grab a face wipe (any varietal of the Burt's Bees Facial Cleansing Towelettes is a sure bet) and take off any remaining makeup remnants or face oil that's on your face—start your sweat with a clean face! Afterward, cleanse (if you can—if not, grab another one of those handy towelettes and wash when you find the nearest appropriate sink). Pai makes a nice Camellia & Rose Gentle Hydrating Cleanser that's pretty gym-bag friendly. Smush it around your face for a minute (it won't lather), splash some water on it, and wipe off...This one can stand to sit on your skin a little, especially if you're on the drier side. Follow up with a nice mist of something refreshing (rose water, Evian spray, toner—anything will do) because you deserve it.

Photo by ITG. Before you wash up, snap a selfie really quick— all the cool kids are doing it.