If you hit the gym regularly, you’ve probably got the guns to prove it. But if your complexion isn’t looking quite as hot as your bod, it’s possible that your post-workout skin care routine—or lack thereof—is the culprit. “Sweat residue and bacteria [present in environments like the gym] on your skin are a bad combination,” says dermatologist Melanie Palm. “It can cause or exacerbate skin conditions like eczema and acne.” But don't cancel your Class Pass just yet. Just practice these three skin care moves, courtesy of Dr. Palm.
Step 1: Wash
"Use warm water—not hot, as it can excessively dry and irritate skin—to wash your face immediately post-workout,” says Dr. Palm, who favors green tea cleansers for their calming properties. "Flushed, post-workout skin will benefit from the antioxidants,” she says.
Step 2: Exfoliate
"If a shower will only happen after the journey back home, consider packing a tote-able container of glycolic-salicylic acid pads to swipe over your skin after exercising.” says Dr. Palm. "The salicylic acid penetrates hair follicles to prevent acne breakouts on the face, chest, and back while the glycolic acid acts as a gentle chemical exfoliant, removing the top layer of dead skin cells to leave skin smooth and clean.” We’re fans of Peter Thomas Roth Max Complexion Correction Pads ($40; sephora.com).
Step 3: Moisturize
“A good workout zaps hydration levels,” says Dr. Palm. “You’ll require adequate water intake and topical moisturizers to maintain soft, supple skin.” So after spin class, drink some good ol’ H2O and apply a moisturizer rich in ingredients like ceramides and hyaluronic acid after cleansing. “These ingredients lock water into your skin,” says Dr. Palm.