Running can help to improve your skin
So, here’s another reason to pull on your fave tights and whack on your joggers: running can help to improve your complexion.
Yep, besides being beneficial for your body and health, it seems pounding the pavement can actually do pretty great things for your skin.
Speaking to Jessica Slater of the The Telegraph (UK), consultant dermatologist and British Skin Foundation spokesperson Dr Emma Wedgeworth confirmed this is indeed true, and not an old wives’ tale.
How does huffing and puffing your way up a hill help your skin?
Dr. Wedgeworth explained: “ When we exercise, we boost circulation to our skin, increasing oxygen and nutrient delivery… Enhanced skin blood flow can also help skin cells regenerate and remove toxins more efficiently. All of these changes can help regulate comedogenisis, the pore blockage, which is the first stage of acne.”
And on top of all that, exercise lowers cortisol (our natural stress hormone) levels, and because stress can cause inflammation and make certain skin conditions worse, your stint on the treadmill or rower helps to prevent that.
But it’s not all sunshine and rainbows when it comes to running and your skin, according to Dr. Wedgeworth. She said to The Telegraph, “Exercise dries out the skin through loss of fluids, and the sodium in sweat can dehydrate the skin as well as sting and irritate it.” And added to that, sweat (and especially sweat combined with make-up) can aggravate the skin enough to cause breakouts (though Dr. Wedgeworth is quick to point out that sweat itself doesn’t lead to breakouts or acne).
So what’s the solution? Firstly, she recommends wearing workout gear made from bamboo or 100 per cent cotton, or a material that wicks sweat away from skin. It’s always a great idea to cleanse your skin as soon as you can after a workout session (micellar water will do the trick). And of course, be sure to drink lots of water.
Are you a runner? Would you consider running more now that you know it may benefit your skin?