Every time you hit the gym you’re doing something amazing for your body: you’re giving it the attention it needs to stay fit, strong and healthy in order to support you day in and day out. Ultimately, it’s an investment into your future health and happiness. While your focus at the gym may be to treat the inside of your body well – from building good cardio health to improving muscle tone – the outside of your body can tend to suffer for it. But it doesn’t have to!
Our skin can really take a beating during a workout, especially if you’re not using the right products to cleanse before and after you work up a sweat. Of course, many fitness centers provide excellent shower facilities and an array of soaps, sprays and lotions fit for a queen – but more often than not these items aren’t specific to your skin type and may not be best suited for post-workout needs. You may find that gym products leave you too dry, or too greasy, or just don’t give you that all-over clean feeling you’re after. What’s more, you may not feel as though you don’t have time for a full skin and body care routine, since you’re already squeezing your workout into a busy schedule.
But you don’t have to keep sacrificing your beauty routine for your workout regime – and vice versa! If you stay away from the gym because you tend to breakout after getting a session in, we’ve got the skincare items you need to keep your skin clean and radiant. Plus, if you skip out on bodycare after exercise because you’re pinched for time, we’ve picked products that are quick and easy to use, and serve dual purposes! So, if your gym bag is missing a good skincare arsenal, grab this wash bag and start prepping it with some of the products below.
9 skincare solutions to pack in your gym bag.
Facial wipes. If you do one thing to prep your skin for exercise, we suggest a facial cleanse with a handy wipe, just to remove heavier makeup to avoid clogged pores and future breakouts. After exercise, use another wipe to remove sweat and debris from your face, neck and decolletage.
Our favorite: Burt’s Bees Sensitive Facial Cleansing Towelettes
Aluminum-free deodorant. There are two main reasons to avoid wearing antiperspirants for exercise. For one, you don’t want to block sweat glands during exercise because sweating is your body’s method of temperature regulation. Secondly, antiperspirants often contain an aluminum additive – which has been linked to negative health impacts later in life. A good way to avoid both of these things is by opting for all-natural deodorant brands.
Our favorite: Ursa Major Hoppin’ Fresh Deodorant
Personal towel. Having your own towel affords you the luxury of choosing a softer one that won’t scratch and irritate your skin when you use it. Additionally, the laundry detergents used at the gym are likely harsher than what you’d use at home, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Our favorite: Sea to Summit Tek Towel
Moisturizing, antibacterial hand spray. After you’ve wrapped up a workout, the first thing to wash is your hands – especially if you’ve been handling gym equipment, weights, and mats. An antibacterial hand spray is convenient and a surefire way to kill any germs or bacteria you may have encountered. Bacteria and dirt is often spread to our face directly from our hands, and it’s a common cause of breakouts. So, cleaner hands = cleaner face!
Our favorite: The Honest Company Hand Sanitizer Spray
Cleansing conditioner. You may be tempted to give your hair a good wash after a particularly sweaty workout, but in order to avoid stripping your hair of natural oils it’s best to sit out the shampoo from time to time. A great gym alternative is a dual-purpose cleansing conditioner. It will remove dirt and sweat without compromising on your natural oils, while hydrating your hair to prevent post-workout frizz and fly-aways.
Our favorite: Matrix Biolage Cleansing Conditioner
Exfoliating body wash. Sweating does a fantastic job of clearing our pores from head to toe and pushing toxins to the surface of our skin. That’s why there’s no better way to get a deep cleanse and refreshed feel than exfoliating after exercise. This stellar selection from Origins also does double duty in the shower. First, it heats up when you scrub to relieve sore muscles, plus it contains volcanic ash for all-natural exfoliation.
Our favorite: Origins Warm Down Lava Scrub
Hydrating lotion. Of course, after you’ve scrubbed away those dead skin cells, it’s good to give back to your skin. An intensive moisturizing lotion is a must-have after exercise, and that’s especially true now with near-freezing temperatures threatening our body’s moisture levels. This lightweight lotion from Philosophy will deliver the hydration your skin needs while leaving you smelling delightfully fresh.
Our favorite: Philosophy Fresh Cream Body Lotion
Argan oil. In case you’re in need of a final touch of hydration – never doubt the magic of argan oil. It’s great to touch up especially dry spots on skin, add to the ends of your hair to prevent frizzing and split ends, dab on chapped lips, or soothe dry hands. It’s the easiest way to get a blast of moisture wherever you need it.
Our favorite: Josie Maran 100 Percent Pure Argan Oil
Smoothing and soothing facial mist. After all the hard work you put in at the gym you may be left looking a bit flushed, and one way to relieve that is with a soothing facial mist. Use your facial mist to help even out your tone and get a refreshing wakeup. It’s the perfect last step to get you ready for whatever comes next in your day.
Our favorite: Caudalie Grape Water