Skip Nav

Does Exercise Help Your Skin

Does Exercise Improve Your Skin? A Derm Weighs In

As POPSUGAR editors, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. POPSUGAR has affiliate and advertising partnerships so we get revenue from sharing this content and from your purchase.

daughter, sister, artist, brown girl, animal lover, exercises, worker, proud, free, happy, cheerful, comfortable
Image Source: Getty / Nyimas Laula

While you probably already know that regular exercise is good for your body, you may not have considered the toll your morning Pilates class could have on your skin.

After all, your body heats up when you exercise, sweating and causing friction as you move against your clothing: a combination that's not always kind to skin. That's why we consulted board-certified dermatologist Dhaval Bhanusali, MD, to find out the effect your daily sweat session has on your complexion.

"Exercise increases blood flow, which provides nourishment to your skin and also carries away waste products like free radicals," Dr. Bhansulai said. "The better circulation of oxygen you experience often leads to a 'post-workout glow.'"

In addition to giving you a healthy-looking complexion post-class, there are potential long-term benefits of exercise to your skin as well. "There have been [studies] that show an increase in collagen with regular exercise, which is important in maintaining the appearance and function of skin," he said.

A study at McMaster University in Ontario in mice showed that signs of ageing were decreased when the mice were put on a consistent exercise routine. Although the mice were genetically altered to prematurely age, their fur didn't even turn grey. This study might mean that regular exercise can contribute to a more youthful appearance.

However, if you're acne-prone, there can be negative side effects if you don't cleanse your skin after a workout. "If you're not showering or cleansing the area after, you might experience an increase in acne, especially yeast or fungal acne," Dr. Bhansali said. If you're unable to shower right after your workout, consider keeping a salicylic acid body spray like Paula's Choice Clear Acne Spray ($25) in your bag. You can also wash with an acne body wash like Neutrogena Body Clear Acne Body Scrub With Salicylic Acid ($6).

Overall, regular exercise will not only benefit you on the inside, but also your outward appearance. So, the next time you're thinking of skipping your workout class for happy hour, consider which one will make you glow in the morning.

Image Source: Getty / Nyimas Laula
Does Exercise Help Your Skin
Paula's Choice Clear Acne Spray
$25
Buy Now
Does Exercise Help Your Skin
Neutrogena Body Clear Acne Body Scrub With Salicylic Acid
$6
from target.com
Buy Now
From Our Partners
Do Wrinkle Patches Work?
Milk Makeup Vegan Milk Moisturiser Review
Summer Fridays CC Me Vitamin C Serum Review
At-Home Facial Tips, According to a Pro
The Top Face Washes for Acne Prone Skin
The Best New Beauty Gadgets of 2020
The Top-Rated Moisturisers from Urban Outfitters
Best Skincare Products on Amazon 2020
Drunk Elephant Protini Polypeptide Moisturiser Review
How to Say No to Hair Stylists and Other Beauty Pros
The Best Anti-Pollution Beauty Products
Dr Pimple Popper: A Week In the Life
Latest Beauty
All the Latest From Ryan Reynolds