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How Your Active Lifestyle Impacts Your Skin Barrier

Talia Blank March 07, 2019

Active Skin Needs Extra Protection

Living an active lifestyle has many well-known benefits: it prevents excess weight gain, improves your mood, reduces stress, boosts energy levels and promotes better sleep. 

Unfortunately, regularly working out, particularly outdoors, has been linked to a number of skin problems. 

The cumulative effect of excessive sweating caused by exercise and overexposure to the sun, pollutants, and wind, can take its toll on your facial skin. This leaves your skin extra vulnerable to dehydration, itchiness and irritation, higher skin photo-sensitivity and a loss of vitamins and minerals.

Luckily, our skin is designed to protect us from all the external aggressions and impurities, through its outermost layer, the skin barrier. Otherwise known as the Stratum Corneum (SC), it acts as a barrier or security guard against the elements and therefore needs to be resilient. FRÉ products assist in this process because they are formulated to strengthen and nourish the skin barrier, helping protect against all the impurities you encounter during the day.

 

 MAGAZINE has featured us in their best 10 products to combat 'runner's face' according to dermatologists! Click here to read the article.   

Runner's face is a condition commonly found in runners and is caused by a weakened skin barrier (more on that below).  


The amazing skin barrier: your first line of defense against the elements

The integrity of our skin barrier is crucial for the skin's ability to stop UVA and UVB rays, pollutants, infection, and toxic chemicals from passing through. It is also essential for protecting and preserving the skin’s water-holding capacity.

 


Exercise and excess sweat damage the skin barrier

Your skin barrier may weaken for a number of reasons, such as the use of harsh products on your skin, not getting enough sleep and environmental conditions (dry, cold or hot weather, wind and sun damage). 

There is also evidence to suggest that sports activities and excess sweat can damage the skin barrier. 

The University of Hamburg investigated the effect of working out on the skin’s physiology. They found that exercise created a ‘higher skin surface pH and hyperhydration of the SC, as well as increased lipid content on the skin surface’.[1] The root of these changes was higher sweat production, which means that as the skin’s surface gets moist, the SC becomes hyper-hydrated. ‘At the same time skin pH rises and the lipid content decreases. [This] warm and humid climate can be an optimal hotbed for microorganism growth’.

Ultimately this means that working out can lead to sports-related skin conditions including inflammation, redness, premature aging, eczema, and acne.

A damaged skin barrier can also cause ‘runners face’, a phenomenon that describes the sunken or gaunt facial structure commonly seen in runners. Runners face is caused by a loss of elasticity and volume, which is often exacerbated by sun damage to the SC, leaving skin with a leather-like appearance.

 

How to protect the skin barrier and strengthen its resilience 

Applying high-quality products that are specifically designed to withstand sweat and weather, both before and after exercise, is essential to maintaining a strong and resilient skin barrier and avoiding potential skin conditions. 

FRÉ is the first skincare line specifically designed for skin that sweats and our products work to protect and nourish the skin barrier. We are proud to be featured in Shape Magazine in their 10 best products to combat runner's face, according to dermatologists.  

At FRÉ we work to help your skin recover from the pollutants and irritants of the day. The night is a key time for this regeneration to take place and a good night cream is an essential part of any skincare routine. Using the right cream can give your skin barrier the boost it needs to regenerate and strengthen while you sleep. This is especially important for active skin that sweats.

Are you interested in how a good night cream can transform your active skin? We’ll have more exciting news on that soon!

 

                                                     

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[1] Clinical Trial: “Influence of Sportive Activity on Skin Barrier Function: A Quantitative Evaluation of 60 Athletes”, International Journal of Dermatology, 2013


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