If running, hiking, skiing or any outdoor fitness session is your workout of choice, what’s key is to protect your skin against the elements. Start with a lightweight cream on clean skin to avoid blocking pores. Sunscreen is a non-negotiable, whatever the time of year – especially if you are skiing, as you’re more prone to sunburn at higher altitudes. Supergoop! offers a sweat-proof sunblock formula – Play Everyday Lotion SPF50.
After any workout, it’s important to tackle all those free radicals that have been whizzing around while you exercised, to maintain your skin quality. In fact, dermatologists often report that they can always tell an outdoor runner the moment they walk into the clinic from the poor quality of their skin. Antioxidants, such as vitamin C, work to offset the free-radical damage that tricks our cells into aging. Use one on your face – MZ Skin’s Brighten & Perfect 10% Vitamin C Corrective Serum has a silky texture – and your body – Natura Bissé’s C+C Vitamin Body Cream, which reduces inflammation, too. For an easy option, Noble Panacea’s The Brilliant Discovery Ritual is a total skincare regime in four little packets, which you can just drop into your kit when you’re short of time. In cooler temperatures, you’ll want to add a lip salve to your regime, as lips can get dry and flaky from a lack of humidity in the air. Sisley’s Confort Extreme Nutritive Lip Balm is a NET-A-PORTER beauty team staple, as are Silke London’s hair ties – to keep hair in place without snagging tresses when pulled back (which can cause breakage). Consider an SPF spray for your hair, too – to prevent color fade, dryness and damage. Oribe’s Imperméable Anti-Humidity Spray offers UV protection while fighting frizz – and won’t leave any residue, so hair still feels soft, not crunchy.
In the gym
Equally important for your gym kit are a hair turban, to absorb water without the damage of towel-drying, and Vanderohe’s Sasawashi Mesh Body Scrub Towels, which are great for delivering a gentle scrub and de-clogging pores after an intense workout.
Whether you’re in a spin class, doing HIIT or weight-training, as your heart rate increases, your sweat glands kick in to cool down your skin, which it turn purges it of dirt and debris. Whatever you have on your skin (especially makeup) when you exercise can prevent this detoxing process and lead to blocked pores and breakouts. This is why it’s so important to cleanse well first, but do so gently with a balm or cream formula. Next, prep your skin with a face mist, as this will generally offer enough hydration to keep skin comfortable without feeling ‘heavy’ when you’re breaking a sweat. Omorovicza Queen of Hungary Mist offers truly lightweight hydration and will help to calm a post-workout flush. Plus, it comes in a mini size, which is ideal for your gym beauty pouch.
After exercising, it’s equally important to cleanse thoroughly, as it’s more likely that sweat and dirt can clog skin. Medik8 Surface Radiance Cleanse has both AHAs and BHAs to refine pores and exfoliate the skin surface, but is still gentle enough for hot, flushed, post-workout skin. Follow this up with a lightweight, nurturing serum to help reduce redness, when your skin is more sensitive. Bioeffect EGF Serum and La Mer The Revitalizing Hydrating Serum feel very lightweight but are heavy on hydration, while Dr. Barbara Sturm’s Mini Calming Serum really helps to keep any sweat and heat-induced irritation at bay.
Low and slow
For more meditative forms of exercise, how you scent your space is just as important as how you prep your skin before a workout. Diptyque’s warm and woody Ambre Room Spray has notes of incense and will perfectly set the mood for a yoga or pilates session. Alternatively, you could burn a resin, such as Costa Brazil’s Resina de Breu, which slowly releases a relaxing aroma of rich earth and crushed leaves. Avoid any perfumes or heavily scented body lotions, as these can be too strong for a more subdued approach to exercise – and be sure to avoid strong scents afterwards, too. We love Nécessaire’s fragrance-free The Body Serum for a major post-shower hydration hit; or U Beauty’s The Super Body Hydrator for additional toning benefits. Aromatherapy Associates’ De-Stress Muscle Gel works wonders massaged into overworked muscles – and, although it feels peppery, it doesn’t give off a strong scent. Facial oils are ideal after yoga, as they work to really cocoon and nourish the skin, keeping that mind-and-body connection long after you’ve finished your session. Augustinus Bader’s The Face Oil really sinks into skin quickly, so you can just apply and go. Alternatively, try mixing a few drops of RéVive’s Glow Elixir Hydrating Radiance Oil with your foundation for a soft-focus effect.
The model featured in this story is not associated with NET-A-PORTER and does not endorse it or the products shown