While I wouldn’t consider myself a skincare expert, or even close to a beauty blogger (clearly… I don’t need to explain myself there), I’ve become obsessed with taking care of my skin as I’ve aged and particularly because of jiu-jitsu. I’ve been training jiu-jitsu and while it’s amazing in so many ways, it’s certainly not amazing for my skin. But even if you don’t train jiu-jitsu, if you’re active and a consistent gym-goer, taking care of your skin is incredibly important and the products and makeup you use matter.
Developing a skincare routine
Everyone’s skincare routine will look different for them based on what they need for their skin type and the issues they personally struggle with. For reference, I have combination skin, which means I’m oily in some areas while dry in others and tend to have an uneven complexion. I’m very fair so it’s easier to notice the unevenness, even though I didn’t have a ton of sun damage. Right now, I typically train jiu-jitsu 3-4 times per week and weight train (in a hot ass garage) 3 times per week aka I sweat a LOT. Between sweating in the garage and class on top of the abrasiveness of jiu-jitsu, my skin can become very irritated and break out. Not everyone will be in this exact situation, but chances are if you train several times a week you’ve experienced skin changes.
If you’re an active gym-goer, you’ll want to make sure you’re taking care of your skin to avoid breakouts. And of course, if you’re like most of us you’re also trying to make your skin look tighter, brighter, have less sun damage… the list can go on and on. It’s incredibly overwhelming because there are so many products (good and bad!) on the market. That’s why we had Racquel Frisella on the podcast last week to talk about all things skincare! If you haven’t checked it out, I’d highly recommend listening because we go over the ins and outs of creating a skincare routine, what the most important products are to invest in, how to manage sun damage, what to do before and after you train, and more.
Racquel is amazing and actually does complimentary, customized skincare routines through her site for medical-grade products. I’ve been using these products for over a year now and they have completely changed my skin! I say this as a happy, paying customer who just loves the results that I’ve gotten with implementing the right products for me. The best thing about medical-grade products is that while they are more expensive upfront, they last much longer and you actually need less of them to make a difference!
My intention is not to write out the routine that I use and for it to be the perfect routine for you. Everyone will have different needs with skincare that are specific to them, which is why custom consults are a great option. But, if you’re like me you like seeing concrete lists and suggestions of what works from people who have used the products on a consistent basis before you invest. Below I’ve detailed my standard morning and nighttime routine, specifics around training, and also additional beauty products I felt were worth mentioning.
I’ll first use a gentle cleanser, then add a tinted SPF and finish off with a Vitamin C serum. If I’m training that day, I’ll fill in with a bit of eyebrow pencil and make sure my lippies are moisturized. That’s it! If I’m not training, I might wear a light face of makeup. I’ve gotten to the point where investing in my skincare has made such a difference to the texture and overall look of my skin that I wear makeup significantly less.
Before the gym
Regardless of when I’m training, I’ll make sure to use the gentle cleanser again pre-training. This ensures that I’m not trapping anything that would clog my pores before I lift or go to class. If I’m going to class, I’ll apply a thin layer of this calming cream to help lessen the abrasiveness on the mat.
Immediately post jiu-jitsu
Like I mentioned, jiu-jitsu is rough on my face in more ways than one and it’s also a sweaty mess. Before I leave the gym, I use this clarifying pad and then do my full skincare routine when I get home. This has actually made a huge difference in not letting the sweat and whatever else is on the mat stay on my face for any longer than necessary!
Again, I’ll use a gentle cleanser first. Two nights a week I use these Koji pads and one night per week I use these glow pads. These pads have active acids in them that help regenerate skin cells, tighten your pores, reduce lines and even out your pigmentation. Yes… they’re that good. They’re fairly expensive but they last a long time and are fully worth the investment in my opinion. Afterward, I’ll use another serum or a basic moisturizer.
Other beauty products that should be mentioned
Remember, I’m no beauty blogger but over the years I’ve found I really like these products!
Chapped lips are a hard no for me. I’ve searched long and far for the best lip care and I’ve settled on these two: Mamonde sleeping mask for moisture and Laneige lip glowy balm for moisture and tint. It’s basically a gloss that doesn’t dry you out!
While the gold standard is to not train with makeup on, I understand it’s either not always a possibility or something that everyone feels comfortable with. I’ve had great success with Fitcover mineral makeup while training. It’s designed for chicks who lift and sweat and it actually provides nice coverage, unlike a lot of mineral makeups I’ve used before. If you do train with makeup, try and wash your face as soon as you can!
Lastly, if anyone reading this article does jiu-jitsu or other combat sports, we all know how important it is to combat again skin infections. Your gym can be sparkling clean, but the reality of combat sports is that they’re a breeding ground for germs. I found The Arm Bar Soap Company last year and have been using their bar soap ever since. It’s cost-effective, protects against skin infections, smells amazing, and supports a small business. All the rad things in my book.
Skincare can be confusing but it doesn’t have to be. Find a few key products, stick with them and then reap the rewards of glowing, healthy, and vibrant skin!