Workout Makeup 101: Can You Wear Makeup While You Exercise?

When it comes to workout makeup, everyone knows THAT person: the one on Insta or E! or The Bachelor who’s knocking out 15 burpees with a flawless face of makeup and full set of lashes. 

Real talk: Some look great! But is wearing makeup while you exercise healthy for your skin? And if you do want to wear workout makeup, what’s the best way to do it? 

Here’s everything you need to know — from the science to the sweat-proof makeup tips — to get a healthy glow while you glisten. 

Q: Is working out while wearing makeup healthy for your skin?

A: Not really — sorry!

Don’t shoot the messenger! 😳😳😳 We got the deets straight from the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), mmmkay? And it doesn’t get more legit than that.

Here’s the deal: Working out can cause excessive sweating, as well as a buildup of oil, dirt and bacteria on your skin. If your skin’s already covered in product, your sweat and your makeup will mix, and your skin can’t breathe as well as it should. That clogs your pores, which leads to a whole mess of problems including acne, redness, dry skin and excessive oil. Clogged pores = Biggest #GYMFAIL of all. 

Q: Okay, so what’s the right way to handle workout makeup?

A: Thx for asking!

Before your workout

 Clean your face with an oil-free makeup remover towelette.

 Put on clean workout clothes. Doubling up, even for a day, can stir up dead skin cells, bacteria and oils on unwashed clothes — all of which will clog pores.

 If you’re exercising outside, apply sunscreen that is:

 SPF 30 or higher

 Broad spectrum (protects you from UVA and UVB rays)


 Oil-free (so it won’t clog pores)

If you need extra incentive to hit up that SPF, try this on for size: Did you know that the sun can actually cause breakouts? True fact. The AAD says that happens because the sun dries out your skin, which causes your body to produce more oil, clogging pores and causing acne.

Pro tip: Use a Beautyblender to apply sunscreen! Haven’t you heard? It’s just one of 10 New Uses For A Beautyblender Sponge.

During your workout

— Use a clean towel — again, one that’s been washed since it was used! — to gently pat sweat from your skin.

— Don’t rub! Rubbing can cause acne to flare.

— Don’t share equipment like helmets, pads or yoga mats, which can be full of breakout-causing bacteria.

— Wipe off shared equipment before you use it for all the same acne-preventing reasons. 

After your workout

— Shower or wash your face with a mild, oil-free cleanser.

— If you’re not showering, change out of your workout clothes and wipe sensitive skin — not just on your face! — with pads that contain salicylic acid to prevent clogged pores.

— Be gentle! Apply cleanser with a light touch and rinse it off with warm water. Rubbing or using hot water can aggravate sensitive skin

Again, this is a great time to reach for your trusty Beautyblender! And if you want to keep things extra mild, try out our new Bio Pure blender, a *supes* soft and natural blender made with a breakthrough renewable plant base. 


Q: Okay, but what if I just can’t face the gym with a bare face?

A: Don’t sweat it! (See what we did there?)

Some days you just can’t face Zoom pilates or the rest of your IronTribe without a little concealer! Getting motivated to workout is hard enough without bringing self consciousness into the equation.

A few key workout makeup tips

— Use tinted moisturizer or a light anti-redness cream. That can help you cover problem areas without overwhelming your skin. 

— Be strategic with concealer. If dark circles are your personal demon, dab on a little BOUNCE Airbrush Liquid Whip Concealer. Our light, whipped formula won’t be as heavy on your pores as a full foundation regimen, but it’s still smart to avoid acne-prone areas and save that Full Face for post-workout.  

— Focus on your beautiful brows! When it comes to eyebrows, you don’t need a bunch of pore-clogging product to get a flawless result

— Glide on some gloss. If bare lips aren’t your bag, swipe on a nourishing lip product and a few dabs of Glass Glow Crystal Clear Shinelighter to make it pop. 

— Try out waterproof mascara! Long, luscious lashes may be all you need to give you the sweat-proof makeup boost you seek. Plus, it won’t clog your pores — as long as you don’t cake it on at the lash line. 

Once you’ve sufficiently felt the burn, follow our post-sweat makeup tips above. Apply a fierce face of your choice, and keep that gorgeous glow going with the best makeup setting spray for glowing skin all day long.