Product Recommendations for Winter Problem Skin

Skincare recommendations for runners with problem skin

My skin has been breaking out a lot more than usual recently, I think due to increased stress. The breakouts are mostly on my chin and cheeks, and along my jawline. The rest of my skin is definitely combination, a mixture of dry and oily, and I think the harsh weather we had last week only exacerbated it. I’m really lucky that when I was in my teenage years, I didn’t suffer with bad skin and would only have the random single spot every now and then. However it seems that in my late 20s my skin is taking a turn for the worse, and I want to address that.

I was amazed by the response to my skincare question on Instagram last week, with so many of you offering amazing advice, product recommendations and suggestions. Plus a lot of you asked me to share the advice.

Disclaimer, I have not tried a lot of these products but I wanted to share the range of recommendations, in particular the products that had multiple mentions.

Skincare recommendations for runners with problem skin

A number of you guys suggested I try the Kiehl’s Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash which I picked up at Heathrow on my way to Costa Rica. I’ve been using it for the past week and am really liking it. It feels gentle but efficient, and is designed to ‘lift away impurities, dirt and oil without stripping skin‘. I like that it foams up, is soft and easy to remove with warm water.

One of the tips I received from Amy at Women’s Health was to stop using cloths on your face (which I do tend to use with my Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish), as they can aggravate your skin and harbour bacteria. I am definitely guilty of not washing them after every use and tend to wash them when I wash my towels. So, I like that the Khiel’s Foaming face wash doesn’t require a cloth to wash it off.

Skincare recommendations for runners with problem skin

Another repeat product recommendation was the La Roche Posay Effaclar – I actually used to use this a lot when one of my best friends worked at L’Oreal (ooh I miss those freebies!). It was fab, and the whole La Roche Posay range is light but seems to be very effective. In fact, I would say that I received a number of French brand suggestions, including Vichy, Sanoflore Aqua Magnifica Skin essence and have been using Bioderma Micellar Water for years – stocking up on the big bottles whenever I’m in France. Maybe the French just do skincare really well?!

Skincare recommendations for runners with problem skin

Other great recommendations I received but haven’t tried yet;

A number of people raved about the Fre collection, designed for women that workout. I am really tempted to order some for next time I’m in the US (in March I’m there for a friend’s 30th and to run the NYC half!). It isn’t cheap, but they do a sun care product, cleanser and serum. The serum is a natural anti-ageing product designed to keep skin that regularly sweats, hydrated and fresh.

Other advice was to cut back on diary which I did in Costa Rica (except for in my coffee and perhaps a few ice-creams!). I also didn’t wear make up while there at all, and it was great to give my face a break.

Personally, I used a brush for my bronzer and blusher/highlight that should be washed and replaced a little more regularly. I may also invest in some brush guards.

Skincare recommendations for runners with problem skin

I was actually a little shocked by how many of you guys asked me to share the recommendations, so I wondered whether more skincare/beauty if something you’d be keen for on the blog in 2018? What else would you like to see more of here? 


  1. Hannah
    December 21, 2017 / 4:09 pm

    I would love a post about skincare – I cycle to work in the cold then go into a dry heated office then back out into the cold to cycle home and again out for my runs – my skin is dry and tight and sore and I don’t really know what to do to help it!
    I would also love some insights into diet and endurance sports – I’m diabetic so have to watch my sugar / carb levels and find it hard to get the balance right training for my events and keeping healthy everywhere else.

    • charlotte
      December 21, 2017 / 9:14 pm

      Great suggestions – will definitely look at doing more skincare! Will have a look into the diabetic sports performance but do you follow Corey Heinz? She’s a marathon runner T1D and has been to an awesome diabetes sports camp so might be able to offer some advice!

  2. December 21, 2017 / 4:10 pm

    The French pharmacy brands really have it nailed! I also use The Ordinary a lot because they’re so affordable and Avene Clearance facewash is excellent (doubles as a body wash if you get spots elsewhere). Must admit I’ve found Cetaphil a bit rich for my spotty skin, although I do use it on my body, oh and Mario Badescu is ace for the odd epic eruption!

    • charlotte
      December 21, 2017 / 9:11 pm

      Awesome recommendations, thanks love! Interesting about Cetaphil – I’ve used it on my chest acne before but never on face! I love The Ordinary serums and use them daily!

  3. W. Purves
    December 22, 2017 / 10:20 pm

    I suggest that your facial skin problem is the result of too much flying. You need to spray your face with a moisturiser every few hours.
    Happy Christmas. Love G.

  4. Anna
    January 3, 2018 / 8:44 am

    its not so much related to this post but i was wondering if you’d ever do a ‘my running story’ where you talk about your first runs and the results you got etc? And then how you increased your distance or speed, or both. What did you focus on first (distance or speed). I’ve been running for about a year now and I’m really interested in other peoples stories and their approach to running. Or maybe a running Q&A? I could send you sooooooo many questions.

    • charlotte
      January 4, 2018 / 4:22 am

      Sure, I’d love to do something like that!! Great ideas x

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