How I Prep My Skin Before Working Out

Like a lot of you, I’m trying to figure out the best way to stay well right now. One of the things I miss the most right now is working out in a group at BYB. I’ve been taking hot pilates and barre classes there for several months and have been loving the results as well as the come-as-you-are vibe. While I hate the gym, I group up dancing, so group fitness classes have always been the best way to keep me motivated, challenge me and reduce stress.

But the crucial collective pause we’re all taking right now is too important. Staying inside 24 hours a day for most of the past two and a half weeks has been challenging, but I’ll do it for however long I need to. In the meantime, I’ve gone back to working out from home, thanks to Craig moving the coffee table every morning and ignoring me with his Bose on while I hop around in front of the TV.

No matter where or when I work out, I always make sure to prep my skin properly. While the former ballerina in me used to prefer a tinted moisturizer, concealer where I needed it and waterproof mascara during exercise, the hot yoga and pilates classes I started taking since moving to NYC have changed my mind.

Open pores + sweat + makeup = breakouts. Also, watching your face melt in the mirror and then smearing it around with a towel is anything but pleasant. Yuck.

To keep working out from causing me skin stress, here are my three simple steps:

Cleanse — No matter when I work out, all product has to come off. If it’s in the morning, I’ll typically use a wipe, like these from Collosol, the same brand as my favorite makeup remover. If it’s nighttime, I’ll do step one of my double cleanse with Lait VIP O2 from Biologique Recherche. Both options are gentle and don’t leave my skin feeling tight or stripped.

Tone — After cleansing, I like to add a bit of moisture back in, so I go for a mist instead of a heavy moisturizer. Serozinc from La Roche-Posay is hydrating but also balancing thanks to zinc, which keeps me from getting greasy. I’ve tried gel moisturizers and other light formulas, but mists just work better for me.

Treat — My last step is my lips. They always get dry during hot workouts, no matter how much water I drink. To keep them from cracking, peeling or just distracting me, I slather on a good layer of a balm like Homeoplasmine.

My skin looks and feels so much better during and after working out when I just let it breathe. Afterwards, I’ll follow my routine as usual, adding a hydrating mask if needed.

I hope you’re all staying well, staying sane and staying the fuck home.

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