You started running for fun or maybe even to improve your health. You got both of those things, but you also got acne. I'm Jesse Funk and on today's episode of Runner's High, we're going to talk about runners acne and what to do about it.
Before I give you a solution to deal with your runner’s acne, it's important to understand why it's happening. Acne, much like eczema is a term that actually can refer to a lot of different conditions. Meaning, there are a lot of underlying reasons that this happens that these little bumps appear on your skin. Now, one of the things that couldn't be happening, it could be a hormonal issue, and that's what I'm not going to cover today. I'm not going to talk about that at all.
What I am going to talk about and refer to as a runner’s acne actually has to do with a lot of sweating that you're doing. Sweating by itself really isn't a problem, it's actually a very good thing. It's something your body's doing to try to help regulate your core temperature while you run. It’s the aftermath of that sweating that can create issues. Sometimes often, you know, around your hairline here or around any kind of elastic strap you might have, be it a bra strap or at your waistline; anywhere were fabric is able to track that moisture against your skin.
When dirt or contaminants and moisture that sweat are allowed to build up in these areas that can clog your pores. And when your pores are clogged with sweat and contaminants be it dirt or leftover shampoo from your head. Whatever it is, it creates this perfect environment for the bacteria that cause acne to thrive. And then consequently, your hair follicles in those areas can become infected and inflamed resulting in these red bumps that we're going to refer to as runner’s acne.
If this is in fact the source of your particular issue and it's not something that else like hormonal changes, then I have good news. There's actually a lot of easy things you can do. The first of those is simply change out of your clothes as soon as you're done running and get in the shower, get ready to get clean right away. Getting clean seems like a pretty easy thing to do.
We just get in the shower, use the soap wash off, but it's not that simple for everybody and that's why at Solpri, this is kind of what we do. We have an everyday soap that you use to get clean. And it is a soap like you'd expect but it's also a mixture of essential oils that are shown to help kill off some of that excess bacteria that causes issues.
If you take that as your everyday product, what you're going to use all the time and combine it with something else like our charcoal bar, this actually is going to help exfoliate your skin, get rid of dead skin cells, which is a food source of that bacteria can also cause issues.
Combine that with the charcoal part where the charcoal has the ability to kind of pull dirt a little bit easier than a regular soap would and you have the basics of the most basic skincare routine you can do to help eliminate some of those very common issues like runners acne. To pick up either of those, go to our shop, Solpri.com/shop.
Now the second thing you can do if you're going to ignore my first piece of advice and not get clean as soon as you can, is to limit cross transfer between items. And this means a couple different things. So, like if you are on the treadmill running, which happens to the best of us, in the winter, it's snowy out it's too cold, you have to be on the treadmill. You want to actually use some kind of dedicated towel to wipe your face off.
You don't want to use your hands over and over or worse take your shirt, pull it up and wipe your face off with that because you are moving germs around different places. Or like I mentioned earlier, you can have hair products still let them your face and move those. It’s that combination again of sweat and other things. It could be oils from your skin, other contaminants, dirt that causes that environment. So, we want to eliminate that cross contamination.
The other thing is, say you changed out of your clothes, you changed into something dry but you didn't have time to shower yet and you passed out for a nap. Well, now you have a dirty pillowcase, you need to change that before you go to sleep later. That pillowcase is a source of issue for a lot of people that they don't necessarily think about. They don't change it as often as they need to, but it holds on to those contaminants that become issues for acne on your face, and you are in contact with it every night.
The third option here is to try to help you eliminate some of that sweat from sitting on your skin and that is choosing moisture wicking clothing. And this is somewhat common nowadays. There's a lot of different kinds of moisture wicking clothing, a lot of these synthetic materials like my shirt here. It should be moisture wicking, it's actually a little hotter than I anticipated it to be.
But moisture wicking clothing helps pull excess sweat away from the skin, which allows it to evaporate so it's not sitting on the skin. Again, sweat is not the problem by itself, it's when it's combined with everything else. So, if we can try to eliminate one of those issues and get the sweat away from us, then that reduces the risk of having issues down the line.
My fourth and final point is for anybody who already has some kind of skincare routine or is looking to start one. Obviously, it's important to wear sunscreen before you go out or even just your makeup. You need to use non comedogenic products. And this is especially important if you're having problems with clogged pores. Non comedogenic is just a official way of saying doesn't clog pores.
So, when you see that on our product, it just means all the ingredients within that product do not clog pores. Why is that important? Well, again, it's where I talked about before, that runner’s acne results from clogged pores being the perfect environment for that bacteria to thrive.
So, you want to stay away from things that clog pores, it makes kind of sense, right? Figure out what the issue is, get away from the issue. To figure that out, you can ask a manufacturer, “Hey, is this product non comedogenic?” And they'll know what you're talking about if they're worth their salt as a manufacturer.
Or if you can't get their contact information for whatever reason, or you just don't want to write into them, you can always get to Google, go down the ingredient list and figure out “Hey, what's this? What's this? What's this?” and kind of go through and figure out are all the ingredients non comedogenic, are all of them safe and not going to clog your pores?
So, those are my four tips for dealing with runner’s acne. Do you have any experience with any other tips, anything else you want to share? Leave them down in the comments below. And as always, be sure to subscribe to the channel to learn more about running and how to be the best runner you can be. I'll see you next time on the next episode of Runner’s High.