The Post-Workout Hack for Acne-Prone Skin, According to Dermatologists

by Allure

Thanks to the recent rise of athleisure culture, squeezing in barre before brunch has become a regular weekend pastime. But it’s what happens (or what doesn’t happen) in-between those two activities that might be causing your post-workout acne and bacne (yes, we went there).

No matter how you spend your 45 minutes getting your sweat on—whether it’s spinning, swimming, or sprinting—it’s crucial to take advantage of the fitness studio’s facilities and hit the showers post-sweat sesh. Rinsing off with soap and water will help remove all the gross stuff sitting atop your skin (think: sweat, debris, and build-up) that could clogs pores and triggers breakouts, says Jessica Weiser, a New York City-based dermatologist from the New York Dermatology Group.

But if you can’t get to a shower (hey, it happens), your best bet for beating breakouts is to fake a full-body wash with a cleansing cloth, says Weiser. Her pick? Anything formulated with micellar water. “These cloths contain tiny oil droplets that scavenge sweat, oil, debris, and makeup from the skin surface and leave the skin feeling moist, not stripped or dry,” Weiser explains.

Aside from preventing self-stench (sweaty yoga pants + au naturale body odor), toweling off with a full-body cleansing cloth could prevent more than just those pesky post-workout acne. Leaving excess sweat on the skin could lead to infections because “heat and moisture are a prime breeding ground for bacteria and fungus (yeast),” says Weiser. “Perspiration can result in bacterial proliferation on the skin surface, which can cause staph infections, occlusion of pores leading to acne breakouts, and even superficial fungal infections, such as tinea versicolor.”

Bottom line: If you’ve got an upcoming workout penciled in on your iCal, do yourself a favor and toss a pack of body wipes in your gym bag before heading out. The post-workout hack for acne-prone skin will save you and your future breakouts. Our pick? We like zesty citrus-scented Yuni Shower Sheets Large Body Wipes ($15), which leave behind a fresh, but not overpowering smell similar to that of a parred-down Pine Sol (but in the best way possible). After a few swipes, your skin will feel refreshed and not sticky, but don’t forget, you’ll still need a shower—eventually. More from Allure: 9 Amazing Beauty Products You’ve Never Heard Of The Miranda Kerr Skin Secrets You Should Know About The 8 Best Acne Products You Haven’t Tried Yet