So we were excited to learn about a new company, Skin Care For Athletes, that like the name says specializes in natural skin care specifically for athletes.
I asked the founder, Taylor Sparks to share some tips to help keep your hair and skin healthy even during the toughest work outs!
Natural Skin Care Tips for Teen Athletes
As an athlete or dancer, your skin can be highly over-oxidized, dry and vulnerable to bacterial and fungal infections. Non-stop training, sweating and showering can lead to excessive loss of moisture to the skin and hair.
The skin is the largest organ on your body and so it needs vitamins, minerals, hydration (water) and moisture (oil) in order to perform at its optimum. Staying with a natural and/or organic skin care regimen can assure you healthy skin from head to toe.
Skin Types And Their Care
Now let’s throw in the dreaded stages of teenage hormones and your skin type may be one of the following:
Normal Skin has an even, smooth skin tone; soft texture; and no visible blemishes, red spots, or flaky patches
- Wash with a mild cleanser twice a day. Follow up with a moisturizer for normal skin with an oil or water base, after each washing.
Dry Skin is dull, rough, scaly, and itchy, with almost invisible pores. Dry skin is usually caused by an abnormal shedding of cells from the skin’s outer layer.
- Wash with a mild cleanser twice a day. Follow up with a moisturizer with an oil base, preferably one with jojoba, avocado or shea nut butter.
Oily Skin can be more acne-prone with its open pores, blackheads, and pimples. Because hormones affect oil production, anything that affects your hormone levels may influence your skin. Some experts believe that stress, such as from exams, may trigger outbreaks of acne!
- Wash with a cleanser twice to three times a day that does not contain alcohol, as you can strip the skin of its natural oils and make it over-produce oil.
- You may use a mild toner, without alcohol, but it is not necessary.
- Moisturize the skin with a moisturizer made for oily skin types. They can still contain oil as long as it is not one that clogs pores, such as petroleum or mineral based.
Combination Skin usually has an oily “T-Zone” (forehead, nose, and chin) and dry skin elsewhere. The pores on your face are large, and the skin tends to have blackheads.
- Depending on how oily your T-Zone area is you can follow the regimen for either dry skin or oily skin. Just stay clear of any alcohol based products as to not over-activate the oil in your oily areas.
Skin Care Tip You Hadn’t Considered: Change Your Pillow Case!
The place you lay your head day in and day out, sometimes after a work out on the weekend…without washing your face is lurking with hidden bacteria. The grease, dirt, smog and even pollen from your face, hair and hands can saturate your pillow case in just a few days.
Get in the habit of changing your pillow case at least once a week.
Irritants To Avoid
Most city water systems contain chlorine; once the pores are opened from a warm shower or bath, the skin absorbs chlorine like a sponge. Chlorinated water can cause or exacerbate dry skin and rashes, and the inhaled steam can aggravate sinuses and lungs. But chlorine is not the only chemical of concern.
Adults put up to 126 unique chemicals on their skin each day, and up to 60 percent of what is put on the skin is absorbed directly into the bloodstream.
To make matters worse, teens may be particularly sensitive to exposures to hormone-disrupting chemicals; given the complex role they play during puberty – girls in particular typically experiment with an increasing number and variety of body care products.
Environmental Working Groups, (ewg.org) teen study participants reported using an average of 17 personal care products each day, 40 percent more than an adult woman.
Although these chemical ingredients may appear in small amounts, it’s the constant applying over the years that leads to bio-accumulation within your body. Many of these ingredients can be found in everything from deodorant, to shampoo and mascara to sunscreen.
Here are the top 3 ingredients to avoid:
1. Petroleum (Mineral oil, petroleum distillates, petroleum by products)
Health Concern: Clogs the pores. Interferes with skin’s ability to eliminate toxins, promoting acne. Slows down skin function and cell development, resulting in premature aging.
2. Paraben (Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Isoparaben, Butylparaben)
Health Concern: Suspected carcinogen. Known to disrupt hormone functions and reproductive toxicity.
3. Sodium Laurel Sulfate (SLS), sodium laureth sulfate (SLES)
Health Concern: Degenerative effect on the cell membranes. SLS breaks down the skin’s moisture barrier, easily penetrates the skin, and allows other chemicals to easily penetrate.
It’s important to know that most skin care regimens don’t have formulations that can withstand the conditions that athletes face. But you can lessen or avoid exposure to these chemicals by checking the labels of your skin care products.
Welcome to the fold. When you know better, you do better.
Taylor Sparks is the Principal Goddess/Founder of Skin Care for Athletes.com, the only organic and natural skin care line designed specifically for athletes. Ms. Sparks has been involved in the natural product industry for 5 years with more than 10 years of experience in skin care and cosmetics.
She’s a late-blooming endurance athlete that has completed several 5ks, full and half-marathons, a sprint triathlon and a half-Ironman triathlon. Their company sponsors athletes in several sports and various sporting events. We invite you to like us on Facebook.com/skincareforathletes and follow us on Twitter @athletesskin or contact Taylor directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org.