I sweat. A lot. I run, practice hot yoga and head to the gym regularly, and that means my skin gets a battering. That’s because while working up a sweat regularly is amazing for your skin, we also know that sweat, regular showering and the elements can strip away key lipid components from the skin’s surface. Cue clogged pores, redness, irritation, dehydration and inflammation. None of which sound like things anyone would want, and all of which I know I have. Lovely. So, in a bid to keep my skin in slightly better condition, without sacrificing my training, I’ve been checking out Pretty Athletic, a skincare brand dedicated to helping women who sweat look after their skin before and after exercise.
Founder Leyla Cooper explains that Pretty Athletic came about when, rushing back to her desk after a workout, she realised that while brands love to put ‘sport’ on products aimed at men, there weren’t any brands that addressed the skincare needs of active women. Because women sweat too. Pretty Athletic promises no gimmicks, and that from start to finish ever product needs to meet the needs of active women. The products are 95% natural, vegan and packed with scientifically proven actives, and with six products on offer all your skincare needs should be covered.
So how did it all hold up? I was sent a whole bunch of products to try, and these are the ones that have found a place in my routine!
Pretty Athletic recommends cleansing before and after you work out, which makes a lot of sense to me, not least because panda-eye is never a good look. This tonic aims to gently cleanse, nourish and hydrate, all you need to do is spritz, wipe and go. I really loved this product, it was so quick and easy to use and helped me feel refreshed both before and after my workout. I didn’t really use it as a cleanser, more as a pick me up, but I have noticed that I’m breaking out less since I included it in my routine. Do be careful though, all acids and be tricky and I found that if I used this one than once a day my skin would be quite tingly.
This antioxidant rich serum is designed to soothe and repair – so perfect after a long run where your skin has taken a battering! Apparently the phytosterois in the serum have a proven capacity to improve the skin’s barrier effect after stress, improve skin moisturisation, and help diminish skin redness after stress, which sounds pretty epic! I used the serum after some of my more brutal runs (thanks, Beast from the East) and did find that it was really moisturising and soothing. However, it did feel a little greasy on my skin, and I reckon this would be one that was best saved for bedtime.
The mini bottle of this cleanser in Pretty Athletic’s Cool Down Kit is the perfect size to stash in your gym bag! It’s become my go-to cleanser after sweaty hot yoga classes because it’s so refreshing, and I really like that the gel texture doesn’t feel too heavy. The formula is designed to calm, soothe and remove sweat, excess oil and impurities, and in my experience it does exactly what it says on the tin.
I really enjoyed trying out Pretty Athletic and learning more about how to look after my skin when I’m training, but I do wonder if we really need special products for ‘sport’ or if our normal facewashes and moisterisers would do the job just fine? Pretty Athletic products are definitely a nice to have, but not a must have.