Studies have shown that when we are stressed, our hormones cause the body to produce excess oil via the skin’s sebaceous glands. This extra oil can clog our pores and result in breakouts. Sweating as a result of exercise is useful in clearing dirt and oil from our pores, however skin maintenance is very important, so that sweat isn’t allowed to settle on the skin and block our pores. It’s true that acne most commonly affects teenagers due to hormonal changes and fluctuations, but people even into their 40’s and 50’s can also suffer from severe acne. Often during stages of puberty, pregnancy and menopause, we experience hormonal changes and fluctuations, which can have a terrible impact on our skin. Our skin can begin to break out, resulting in widespread, often noticeable acne. Exercise benefits our complexion by regulating our hormones through weight management, as well as managing stress. Regular exercise can help us to achieve and maintain healthy, glowing skin by reducing the effects that hormonal changes and stress can have on our skin. Participating in physical activity for at least four to five hours weekly can work wonders. Acne often occurs due to increased amounts of cortisol (stress hormone) in our bodies. Cortisol can trigger our oil glands to overproduce if we are stressed, resulting in blemishes and breakouts. Skin oil can clog our pores and keep our skin from breathing, which increases the risk of breakouts, blackheads and whiteheads. However, exercising regularly to lower our stress levels, in conjunction with consistent skin care can help us to decrease the effect that stress and hormonal fluctuations have on our skin. Increased sweating from exercise can help to clear oil and dirt from deep within our pores, however it’s important to remember that if we allow the sweat to settle on the surface of our skin, our pores will clog up. To decrease the chance of blemishes and break outs from excessive sweating, it’s vital that we thoroughly cleanse areas such as the face, back and neck after participating in exercise. Don’t forget to keep in mind that exercise should be paired with a balanced, nutritious diet and regular, thorough skin maintenance to achieve the best results for your skin!