19 of our favourite post-workout beauty essentials
They’ll get you ready in a flash
By Iantha Yu
Beauty Crew Beauty Editor / September 13 2019
Whether you’re running from Pilates at lunch to your team pow-wow at 2pm or trying to squeeze in a quick boxing class in the morning before your work day begins, it *is* possible to look like you’ve barely broken a sweat… all you need are the right beauty products to help you get out the door in a hurry.
So you’ve hit a PB in your treadmill sprints - go you! You may be riding on the high of reaching that new time, but your face may also be showing it; we’re talking flushed cheeks and shiny skin (and not in a good way). The solution: Genius facial skin care products that can take you from hot mess to squeaky clean, STAT.
Forget liquid cleansers that may burst in your bag; a cleansing stick can remove grime and makeup just as effectively. MCoBeauty Makeup Remover Balm is enriched with rose extract so it’s extra gentle. Swipe it straight onto your face, massage it in and rinse with warm water to wash it all away. Easy.
Aloe vera should be your go-to ingredient when it comes to cooling your skin down and nixing redness. Instead of cotton pads, tip a tiny amount of Mario Badescu Aloe Vera Toner into your palms and press it into your skin for better absorption.
If you’re heading outside at any point during the day, sunscreen is a non-negotiable. “It’s an essential step in protecting your skin against UVA and UVB rays,” says Alphie Sadsad, National Artistry Lead of Sephora. “Go for a multitasker that can be applied in a hurry.” Try Alpha-H Essential Skin Perfecting Moisturiser.
Instead of lugging around separate products, try a serum-and-moisturiser hybrid, such as Clinique Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly + Active Cartridge Concentrate for Irritation, to save space in your gym bag. The separate cartridges will infuse the two formulas together when you press the pump, guaranteeing potency with every application.
“I love to spray my face post-workout with a hydrating face mist to quickly hydrate and for a pick-me-up!,” says Tully Humphrey, founder of activewear label Tully Lou. Try Jurlique Sweet Violet & Grapefruit Hydrating Mist.
Max your makeup
While it’s not advised to wear makeup *during* your workout (foundation can clog your pores and lead to breakouts), reach for these quick fixes post-workout when you need to look ‘done’ in a matter of seconds.
After a good sweat, enhance that all-over glow - strategically - with a dusting of illuminator (such as with Revlon PhotoReady Draping Palette) on cheekbones and the inner corners of your eyes.
A tinted lippie offers just a hint of colour, making it perfect for everyday wear. Plus, it can be applied literally as you’re walking out of the gym, sans mirror. Yves Saint Laurent Beauté Vernis A Levres Water Stain is long-wearing *and* vibrant... what more could you want?
Groomed brows are the key to looking polished with minimal effort. “The sponge tip of MAC Shape & Shade Brow Tint adds soft colour through the brow [and can] thicken it; and the super fine liquid brow end creates fine hairs to fill in any sparse areas, creating defined and full brows,” says Carol Mackie, MAC Senior Global Artist.
After you workout, go for a multipurpose base such as a BB cream to even out your skin tone and keep your complexion hydrated through the day. La Roche-Posay Uvidea XL BB Cream SPF 50+ also contains shea butter to nourish and sun protection to shield you from UVA and UVB rays.
“To get me out the door in seconds, I often use a cream blush for my cheeks and eyes…it’s so quick and easy!,” says fashion influencer Lindy Klim. Try Mecca Cosmetica Hydra Cheek Tint and Illuminating Balm Duo in Watermelon.
From barre to boxing, your body gets put through a lot of stress and physical exertion. Besides feeling the strain - hello, sore muscles! - you’re likely working up a sweat all over, too. Not hot. Here’s how you can freshen up quickly before you head out.
A scented body oil, such as Thank You Botanical Geranium & Rosewood Bath & Body Oil, is the key to smelling fresh *and* keeping your limbs hydrated. “Following your body wash, apply a body oil while you’re still in the shower and allow the water to wash away the excess,” says facialist Jocelyn Petroni. “When you jump out, gently towel-dry your body, and your skin will be left with the perfect amount of moisture. This technique allows your skin to absorb what it needs.”
Rushing from cold gym air-con to hot shower can zap hydration from your skin. Therefore, a rich body moisturiser is key to reversing the damage. Bangn Body Firming Body Lotion features pineapple fruit oil to also address stretch marks and cellulite.
We hate to break it to you, but your reformer machine is absolutely crawling with bacteria. Try Officine Universelle Buly Double Pommade Concréte, a sanitising hand cream that can eliminate germs collected on your hands.
Sun’s out, guns out! You can’t go wrong with a shimmering body bronzer to accentuate your toned limbs. Charlotte Tilbury Supermodel Body is infused with shiitake mushroom extract to make your skin look and feel firmer.
“Besides how an infrared sauna can increase blood circulation and improve muscle recovery, I love how they can give my skin a really nice glow afterwards,” says Kate Kendall, co-founder and director of Flow Athletic.
Your hair is a dead giveaway when it comes to showing how hard you’ve worked out, especially when hot yoga is involved. The fix? Hair products that freshen you up in a flash - it’s all about working smarter, not harder.
If you only have time to use one product in your hair after a workout, make it a dry shampoo; it can address oily roots and boost volume, even for those with thick hair. The foamy texture of Sachajuan Dry Shampoo Mousse melts into hair invisibly and almost instantly, and won’t leave behind any white residue.
A light-hold product, like a sea salt spray, is perfect for adding body to limp hair. “Spritz your hair with a sea salt spray (such as UEW Haircare BEACH Texture), then pull your hair back and create a messy, loose French braid before your workout,” says Sam Overton, hairstylist and founder of UEW Haircare. “After exercising, take your hair out of the braid, blast it like crazy with a hairdryer, then spray some more sea salt spray into your mid-lengths and ends and scrunch through to create natural-looking movement.”
We get it - wrangling a hairdryer in the change rooms is no fun. If you don’t have the patience nor the time to dry your locks properly, get yourself for a spritz that helps speed up the process. Aveda Speed of Light Blow Dry Accelerator is formulated with lactic acid from sugar beets and this lightweight mist can seal the hair’s cuticle (the key to smoother locks), detangle and reduce blow-dry time.
If you’re choosing to slick your hair up into a high ponytail, make sure you’re using a medium-hold product to nix fly-aways. Swipe R+Co Dart Pomade Stick straight onto your hair to tame those pesky little hairs without the need to use your fingers.
“Pop some Olaplex No.3 Hair Perfector in your hair then sweep it up into a high bun. Your body heat will then encourage a deeper absorption of the product!,” says Molly Gay, instructor at Barry’s Australia.
Looking for some new hair inspiration? Here are the best celeb hair transformations of 2019.
Have you tried any of these gym-friendly products before? What did you think? Tell us in the comments below.
Main image credit: @emrata
Iantha is BEAUTYcrew's Beauty Editor, and has been part of the team since the site launched in 2016. Besides pinky-nude nail polish and wispy false lashes, she has a healthy obsession with face masks and skin care ingredients. Her previous work can be found in Virgin Australia Voyeur, Women's Health, and SHOP Til You Drop.