Guest post series continues. Please welcome Dr Don Grant, who isn’t sweating bout things too much Enter Dr Grant:
When we think about our skincare routine — whether it’s a simple face-wash in the morning and night or a 10-step regime — we often don’t think about incorporating sweating into it.
But sweating it out in a sauna can be hugely beneficial to your skin’s health. It makes sense; we know that sauna has all sorts of healing properties for both your mental wellbeing and your physical health — from relieving stress to reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Here are four reasons why sweating will supercharge your skin routine:
1. Sweating gets rid of dirt and toxins
This might be something you already know about sweating — it gets rids of the dirt and toxins in your skin, giving your pores a deep-clean.
It may sound strange — after all, we feel pretty gross when we sweat — but sweating is the ultimate skin cleanse. How does this work?
Well, sweating in a sauna gets your heart rate up, which pumps blood around your body and increases blood flow — including to your skin.
This is the secret to your pores being cleaned out; as you get warmer, your pores open up, and the dirt and impurities trapped in your skin are washed away. This could be anything from grime and make-up, to pollutants and toxins (like heavy metals and pesticides).
However, it’s important to remember that sweat works to get rid of dirt only if it is washed away — that’s why having a cold shower or swimming in a lake between sauna sessions is such a great idea. If the sweat settles on your body, it can actually irritate your skin further and cause breakouts. So what are you waiting for? Jump in that lake!
2. Sweating can help to treat skin conditions like eczema
It may surprise you to learn that sweating can even help to treat skin conditions like eczema and acne, as well as irritations such as mosquito bites.
Yep, sweating it out in a sauna can soothe irritated and infected bug bites: the heat relaxes the muscles and reduces discomfort, and your salty sweat relieves itchiness and swelling.
Sweating can also help with skin conditions like eczema, which is worse during the winter months when the weather is cold and dry. Regular sauna use helps to control inflammation and soothe irritated skin. Sweating also flushes out any excess dead skin and bacteria that can cause infection. Just remember to wash regularly between sauna sessions.
Eczema flare-ups can also be triggered by anxiety and stress, so the positive wellbeing benefits of using the sauna can help prevent eczema too — combatting stress through the release of endorphins and relieving tension in the body.
So if you’re wondering how to get rid of eczema on your face, then try sweating in a sauna — as well as keeping your face clean and moisturizing regularly (read more eczema tips in this article from Dr Don Grant).
3. Sweating improves circulation, which leaves you with a healthy glow
Doing anything that makes you sweat — whether it’s exercise or using a sauna — improves your circulation. But how does that make your skin better?
As you sit in a sauna and start to sweat, you’ll notice that your body temperature rises — you feel warm and your heart starts to beat faster.
This gets the blood circulating around your body and causes your blood vessels to dilate (known as vasodilation). The increased blood flow circulates oxygen and nutrients to your skin cells, nourishing them and carrying away waste products.
The end result is that your skin stays healthy and glowing — and not just from the heat of the sauna! Proper blood flow ensures even skin tone and more radiant, youthful skin. Another great reason to enjoy your sauna sessions.
4. Sweating gets rid of any extra, dead skin
Finally, sweating can help you to get rid of any dead skin cells that are hanging around. These can clog up your pores and lead to breakouts and pimples, to it’s healthy to shed this excess skin. Dead skin cells can also leave your skin looking dull and tired.
Sweating is a healthy way to get rid of this dry, dead layer, revealing the healthy skin underneath. This results in healthier-looking skin, which appears glowing and vibrant.
Not only that, but sweating away dead skin cells can also clear up your pores — preventing your chances of a pimple breakout or acne-flare-up. However, as we’ve mentioned before, it’s important to wash after a sauna session, to wash away your sweat and any dead skin cells.
These are just four reasons why sweating it out in a sauna will supercharge your skin routine. So what are you waiting for? Enjoy your sauna experience — it’ll leave you glowing inside and out.
About the author: Dr Don Grant (MB, ChB, DRCOG, MRCGP, Dip.orth.med) is the clinical lead at The Independent Pharmacy, one of the UK’s leading independent online pharmacies. For more healthcare and treatment advice, visit their website.