Exercises to improve your skin conditions

If you have been struggling to make it to the gym, there might just be a new incentive for you.

Exercise keeps our bodies in shape and our health in the green. But it can also affect the state of our skin, reveals research from Swedish beauty and tech brand Foreo.

From marathon running to mindful yoga, the exercises you adopt have the power to make or break your complexion.

So if you suffer anything from rosacea to acne, we reveal which exercises are best for which skin condition.



Training for more than an hour, even at low intensity, can stimulate release of stress hormone cortisol, which can trigger breakouts and acne, says GP and dermatologist Dr Anita Sturnham.

If your skin is struggling for clarity, consider switching high-intensity routines for an hour of yoga to keep cortisol levels low.

“Yoga builds strength and helps alleviate stress,” says celebrity personal trainer, Ciara London.


Resistance training

Regular exercise makes our heart more efficient at delivering essential nutrients to our skin.

To keep up a daily glow without having to fork out for a pricey gym membership, try resistance workouts that can be done at home.

“Resistance training involves putting muscles under some form of pressure,” Ms London says.

“For example, holding a squat position forces the muscles to work harder, which works the heart.”



Prone to redness? Steer clear of endurance training.

“Exercises such as long-distance running can weaken the epidermal barriers and enhance risk of infection, sensitivity and dryness,” Dr Sturnham says.

To keep your skin barrier intact, opt for a low-intensity workout such as pilates.

“Like yoga, pilates requires minimal equipment and can be done at home by utilising the thousands of tutorials and workouts online,” Ms London says.

Improve definition


As exercise works to tone our bodies, it makes sense for it to tone our faces too, right?

“Moderate aerobic exercise leads to muscle production of myokines,” Dr Sturnham says.

“They are tiny protein substances that promote healthy collagen stores and help keep facial muscle tone in place.”

When it comes to aerobics, you can forget old-school workout DVDs.

“Walking is the most simple and effective aerobic exercise you can do,” Ms London says.


Tai Chi

If you are plagued with unsightly brown spots, any exercise that exposes you to heat could worsen it.

“Lower-intensity exercises have a positive impact on lowering stress hormones such as pigment-producing neuropeptide,” Ms London says.

While yoga and pilates are often held in confined, hot studios, a tamer alternative such as tai chi can help better your pigmentation.

“Tai chi is slower and slightly less intense than yoga,” she says.

Preserve youthful skin


Signs of skin ageing are inevitable but you can still take precautionary measures.

“Focus on building lean muscle mass with HIIT (high-intensity interval training). Developing good muscle tone throughout the body can improve the tautness of the skin,” Dr Sturnham says

HIIT involves short, sharp, intense bursts of cardio training.

You can try sets of squat jumps for 30 seconds, then having a ten-second rest in between.

This article was republished with permission from The Sun