We’ve all been told, “Don’t sweat it,” but when it comes to skin sweat can be good. The trick is to take care of your skin after you perspire and not let impurities and dirt build up or settle back in your pores. We think these tips will help you reap the benefits of sweating–and leave your complexion with a natural glow.
The Science of Sweat
Sweat is natural. Our sweat glands cool our bodies and help us maintain a healthy body temperature. In addition, sweat clears toxins and is a normal response to stress and anxiety. And while we don’t want to see sweat on our favorite dress, it’s something we need to do regularly because sweat performs essential body-cleansing functions.
Interestingly, sweat has no odor. We get stinky when bacteria on our skin mix with sweat, producing a strong smell.
The Spa–Sweat Connection
Spas around the globe recognize the benefits of sweating and encourage guests to relax in increasingly elaborate saunas and steam rooms. (In fact, we think one of the most healing elements in a spa treatment is time spent in one of these soothing oases.)
In addition, more spas are incorporating sweat lodges and the ancient Mexican practice of Temazcal in their experiences, inviting people to cleanse their bodies, minds and spirits. (More on Temazcal in Spafinder’s Trend Report.) Plus, sweat-inducing hot springs, one of the oldest spa experiences in the world, are heating up as people, countries and developers discover the health and economic benefits. And then there are hot yoga classes, hot fitness classes and hot Pilates–all designed to help us sweat more and flush fat and toxins from our bodies.
Sweat the Small Stuff
Ok, so we know sweat is necessary and has proven benefits. However, letting sweat sit on our skin after a workout or sauna can cause problems. Sure, sweat–aka perspiration– flushes out the grime from our pores but all that dirt is more than yucky. When it settles back in your skin, it’s a breeding ground for breakouts and rashes, not to mention infections. Therefore, it’s important to incorporate these simple steps into your healthy sweat routine.
- First, cleanse your face, and if possible, your body, immediately after you build up a sweat. The face part is easier: carry cleansing wipes in your gym bag or purse, like these from Burt’s Bees or Cetaphil. Or pack sample or travel sizes of your favorite skin cleanser.
- Next, commit to wearing no makeup when you’re working out or spa-ing. If you’re not ready to go natural, cut back and avoid pore-clogging items like powder and heavy foundations. You don’t want to clog pores that you’re trying to cleanse!
- Finally, after you remove the sweat and toxins, enhance your glow with a refreshing mist or toner. We like the classic Evian Spray and Murad Resurgence Hydrating Facial Toner. They feel so good–and isn’t that what it is all about?
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 Into the Gloss, “Live Long and Perspire”
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