Thursday, 10 January 2013
DON’T LET THE GYM WRECK YOUR SKIN
Exercise is the perfect way to get in shape but make sure you skin doesn’t pay the price for keeping your mind and body healthy. Whether it’s the treadmill or free weights, here are some more easy pointers to prevent exercise-induced skin and hair problems.
Exercise and sweat can lead to acne breakouts, as grime accumulates in blocked pores. The best way to keep zits at bay is by cleansing with an anti-bacterial face wash before and after a workout. Also wear a headband to keep hair away from the skin and avoid touching the face with your hands as this leads to accumulation of oil and dirt. And, most importantly, avoid wearing makeup while working out: Rising body temperature and sweating will cause it to seep further down in your pores, making it harder to combat blackheads and pimples.
Tight, synthetic clothes are primary culprits here – wear clean, loose fitting clothes made from cotton or other materials that allow sweat to evaporate easily. Shower immediately after your workout and regularly exfoliate skin with a brush or loofah.
Some people develop dark patches on the back where it rubs against the bench when lifting weights. Counter by smoothing on a lotion such as Lubriderm on the affected area before the workout begins. This extra lubrication will help prevent the abrasion from getting started or an existing spot from becoming worse.
Caused by moist conditions and friction in your shoe, athlete’s foot can be avoided by wearing socks made of absorbent material to keep your feet dry. After exercising, wash your feet with an antibacterial and dry thoroughly. Foot sprays are also helpful in keeping feet dry and fresh while working out.
Exercising takes a toll on your tresses by over-stimulating the scalp’s oil glands, making hair limp and dandruff-prone. Wash with a gentle clarifying shampoo and condition immediately after you finish exercising.
Sharing weights, benches and other gym paraphernalia increases the risk for bacterial infections, so wipe down surfaces before and after you use the equipment, particularly when you are sitting down and have skin-to-bench contact. And it’s nice that your gym provides towels but you don’t know what’s living in them – better to bring your own.
This is a painful problem that can result from prolonged, regular stints of running. It’s caused by friction when the nipple rubs against fabric, leading to crust and broken skin that remains painful for days. To avoid, use nipple guards (commercially available spongy pads) or apply a greasy ointment like Vaseline or Aquaphor on the area – this will create a protective barrier and reduce friction.