ready set hydrate

Your skin likes you working out. But not too much and not without proper skin hydration.

READY, SET, HYDRATE!

Sport is good as long as you don’t overdo it. It strengthens your cardio system, makes you stronger and improves your posture. And it adds to the well-being of the largest human organ, your skin. But make sure you keep it properly hydrated and follow some men’s skin care advice. Otherwise all kinds of sports can have negative side effects on your skin, especially dry skin. We took a closer look.
ready set hydrate

Don't overdo it!

Sport is just like many other things in life: you know it is good for you, but only if you don’t overdo it. This may sound like something your grandfather might tell you, but it really is true. The dose makes the drug, as they say. And exercising too hard can certainly have negative effects on your body in general and on your skin in particular over time. This is especially true for people with dry skin.

But surely that depends on the kind of sports you do, I hear you say? That’s totally right. And that’s why we took a closer look at how certain kinds of physical exercise can affect your skin if you go all out at the gym – and how men’s skin care can help afterwards to limit possible damage done to your skin. Hint: skin hydration is key!

ready set hydrate

Endurance sports

Is eating up mile after mile on roads, tracks or trails your thing? Do you like to run, cycle or hike to places so far away other people would take a car or plane to get there? Well then, you’re a real endurance enthusiast!

As such, your skin will most certainly get more than enough oxygen and daylight, both of which are not only good for a healthy complexion, but may also reduce the occurrence of pimples and other signs of skin irritation. Besides, exercise-induced sweating even has a certain anti-bacterial effect on skin, too. But do yourself and your skin a favour before, during and after your hour-long work-outs.

• Before: wear the right gear and shoes that fit! Realising mid-workout that your feet are tormented with blisters or that your inner thighs are hellishly chafed will spoil your fun. If in doubt, moisturise those parts of your skin intensely before setting off. And when the sun is shining, make sure you use sun screen! 

• During: the longer you work out, the more you sweat! So, please drink enough to counterbalance the loss of water caused by sweating. This is even more important when it’s either really hot or freezing cold, because in these conditions, your skin is going to dry up faster than usual. Drinking enough will not only maintain your performance, but will also moisturise your skin internally and thus prevent early wrinkles.

• After: hours of physical exercise will put a lot of stress not only on your muscles but on your skin, too. Washing off sweat, dust or mud with an energising, hydrating, refreshing or soothing shower gel is certainly a good way to start your post-workout men’s skin care routine. In case of really dry skin, you may want to apply some vitalising body lotion afterwards, especially to those parts of your skin that are most strained.

ready set hydrate

Water sports

Come on and surface, Flipper, we’ve got something to tell you, too! Water is good for your skin, right? Technically, yes. But as you may remember, you can have too much of a good thing – even water. That is especially true if you have dry skin, because too much water can dry it up even more. Sounds confusing, doesn’t it?
 
Well, the answer is rather simple and has to do with the acid mantle of your skin, composed of sebum and sweat. Consider that to be your body’s barrier to keep the moisture, meaning the fat, inside of your skin. Water, especially hot water, neutralises that barrier and leaves your skin unprotected against drying up. Some people notice a dry and tight feeling on their skin after taking a shower, for instance. Does that sound familiar to you? Don’t worry, there are some things you can do to support your skin hydration.

• Try to avoid men’s skin care products such as soap or any product containing alcohol, because both tend to dry up your skin. If you asked us, we’d refer you to the NIVEA MEN Sensitive range instead.

• You have just got out of the water, so limit your showering routine to short lukewarm showers instead of long hot showers. Acid mantle, remember?

• When showering, try to avoid shower gels that produce a lot of foam on your skin. The foam may indicate plenty of surfactants, which are said to dry up the skin.

• After showering, don’t scrub your skin with a towel. Try to pat yourself dry instead and apply a hydrating body lotion or moisturising gel. This will help your skin to rebuild that thin, moisture-containing acid mantle.

ready set hydrate

Bodybuilding

Is “Pumping Iron” your favourite movie? Is creatine an integral part of your diet? And do your biceps have the same circumference as your thighs? Impressive, dude! But skin hydration is important for you, too. Here’s why.

Excessive lifting can put real stress on your skin, which may not be able to expand as large and quickly as your self-confidence. So, rapidly lifting ever heavier weights will certainly expand your muscles, but it can do real damage to your skin. As a rule of thumb, the drier your skin, the more damage you can do. Ever heard of something called “stretch marks”? If not, just ask your fellow lifters at the gym.

We might weigh only a hundred pounds when soaking wet, but here is our weightlifting skin care advice: take it slow and hydrate well! It took Arnold Schwarzenegger years to become “Mr Universe”, so you don’t need to hurry either. Your skin will appreciate it.

Acne is another skin problem that is rather common among bodybuilders. Why is that? Well, we can all agree on one thing: building up muscles is certainly a manly thing to do (grunting permitted). That comes at a price, though. When your muscles grow, your testosterone level is going to rise, too. Testosterone is a hormone that stimulates the production of sebum, which may eventually result in more pimples.

What can you do about it? Well, since we’re talking about hormonal imbalances here, lotions and other men’s skin care tricks won’t cut it, we’re afraid. One thing though: extensive washing is generally not considered to help much. In fact, it damages the acid mantle of your skin and may thus have the exact opposite effect. So, restrain yourself and use pH-adjusted men’s skin care products. That’s the best advice we can give on that matter.

ready set hydrate

Martial Arts

We don’t know whether or not Bruce Lee’s skin was flawless and, if it was, how he maintained it throughout all his movies. His men’s skin care arsenal may have included some ancient and miraculous Asian tonics, we don’t know. But we do know that all you fighters out there can do something to keep your skin as healthy, smooth and flexible as possible. And that is: moisturise!

No matter if you’re going to do the epic splits “Van Damme” style or if you’re preparing yourself for a real fight in your first MMA tournament next weekend – moisture will prevent your skin from the negative effects of excessive stretching, scraping, punching, kicking, biting or God knows what else physics or ruthless opponents may throw at it. In part, at least.

So, whenever you hit the dojo or gym, there’s no such thing as too much moisturising before, during or after your workout. And we’re not just talking about the side-effects of immediate “enemy contact” here. Even the defenceless punching ball will make your knuckles burst open over time –if they have not been lubricated well in the first place.

So, no matter what kind of sports you do, hydration is important. Not only for your muscles to do their job properly, but also for your skin to maintain those good looks of yours.