One of the biggest excuses not to exercise. Sorted.

Nicky’s post workout makeup regime


We’re doing the 12WBT at the moment and aside from learning how to navigate Christmas parties without wanting to devour entire trays of canapés, we’ve been held accountable to exercising every day.

Fitting in daily exercise can been a challenge for me (and not just because I hardly leave the couch over winter) but because I turn red during exercise, and if I’ve got an early meeting or party after work it’s just another excuse I use not to workout.

FYI, you should know this post is sponsored by 12WBT.  But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in their own words.

I figured I wasn’t the only one experiencing post workout beauty dilemmas so I’ve compiled the best beauty tips and tricks to get you from the gym door faster than you can say tomato-face.

1. Skip the make-up (and the moisturiser).

Ditch your makeup before hitting the treadmilll.

Sure, you probably weren’t thinking of heading to the gym with a full face ‘o slap anyway but if you’re exercising on your lunch break or after work there’s a very good case for taking off your makeup before hitting the treadmill.

When you sweat your pores open up and if you’re wearing heavy foundation and face powders on the skin it can block the skin’s natural ability to breathe leading to clogged pores, breakouts and irritation. It’s best to remove makeup with a sulfate-free cleanser, that won’t dry out your skin or cause any skin irritation before you exercise.

As for moisturiser, you can definitely skip it pre-workout. As even a lightweight lotion is going to slip right off your face once you get your Zumba-rhythm going and melt down your face and into your eyes. The only exception here is if you’re exercising outside then you’ll need to apply sunscreen first.

2. BYO Beauty Tips.

Unless you’re working out at a lavish five-star hotel then you might want to skip the shampoo, conditioner and body wash provided. These are often (but not always!) not of the same quality as the ones you’d use at home. They often contain harsh antibacterial ingredients that can irritate the skin.

Even the cleanest gyms can be a hotbed for germs and viruses like ringworm and athlete’s foot and you don’t need us to tell you twice to pack your thongs for the shower. It’s also a good idea not to touch your face (or mouth) during your workout if you’re using gym machines or weights as you can transfer harmful bacteria from another person’s sweat right onto your face. Gross.

Headband-wearers beware.

3. Ditch the headband.

Headband-wearers beware; you could be trapping oil and dirt into your pores by wearing a tight headband across the hairline. Either push it back or make like a gymnast and wear a scrunchie. What? Nineties revivals aren’t your thing? Tie hair up into a plaited or twisted style pre-workout, as it will keep it off your face and save you time at the end.

4. I’m redder than Rudolph’s nose, what do I do?

Your first port-of-call if you turn red during exercise of any sort is to run your wrists under cold water; this helps to cool the body’s temperature down. Next up, apply deodorant to any place that’s still sweating e.g. underarms, and in between your boobs. Dump any products that will potentially irritate the skin, so look for serums and lightweight moisturisers that contain rosehip, green tea, chamomile, or bisabolol. A gel cleanser will be calming on the skin and as for covering that redness? A CC cream instantly neutralises redness.


5. I’ve got 15 mins to be at work: what should my beauty game-plan be?

Hit the showers: use a moisturising body wash or even better, an in-shower moisturising product so you can skip lathering up afterwards altogether. While still in the shower, cleanse the skin with a gentle sulfate-free cleanser or jojoba oil to remove any traces of toxins, oil and perspiration.

A bright lip always does the trick.

Then wipe over your face with an alcohol-free toner, this won’t leave your skin feeling dry, and apply a moisturiser. If you’re going to be outside, apply a moisturer with SPF. Next up, swipe over a mineral makeup powder, which won’t immediately melt off your skin.
Forget eyeshadows and mascara, and opt for a long-wearing eyeliner instead. We’re not suggesting this is the time to experiment with a cats eye or flicks but applying it close to the top lashline will make lashes appear thicker. A bright lip is a great way to look made-up with minimum effort. Generously spritz hair with a heavy duty dry shampoo and twist it up into a topknot, fishtail braid or ponytail (add a metallic ponytail holder to make it look more polished for the office).

As for how the other Mamamia crew are going on their 12WBT journeys?


Nat: I’m loving 12WBT. It’s such a busy time of year and for me, exercise is always the first thing to go when life gets too hectic. Thankfully, this year the program is keeping me accountable and always reminding me to take the time and put some effort into exercising and eating well.


Jo: I am happy to report that I have stuck to the fitness program and feel AMAZING. I can breeze through a thirty minute run three times a week this weekend my mum took a photo of me…my bicep just popped out. Ha ha! I do get really hungry after my Super Saturday exercise session but have managed to use fruit to fill the ravenous void rather than biscuits. All I can say is thank goodness mangoes are in season. I am still on track to reach my goal by my birthday on January 21 as long as I don’t go crazy over Christmas but at least now, if I overindulge, I can go for a couple of extra runs and get straight back on track. Michelle has become a member of my household. She’s like an imaginary big sister. I hear her voice in my head all the time while I’m shopping, exercising and cooking.


Lucy: My biggest battle has probably been time. I usually leave for work at around 6:45am and often don’t get home until late, at which point I’d rather hug a skunk than go to the gym. I’m loving that you can tailor Michelle’s workouts to where you are – I set it to ‘home’ and can follow her videos and do a little circuit in the backyard for 45 minutes or go for a run around the neighbourhood. Food wise, I’ve really enjoyed the weekly nutrition plans. Every meal is delicious, nothing takes too long to prepare. And I also love that there’s an occasional treat meal for those times when you want to go out with mates.

Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation (12WBT) is an online 12-week exercise, nutrition and mindset training program designed to transform your body and, most importantly, your way of thinking.

Whether it be weight loss, running, shaping and toning, or simply a motivational boost, this program is designed for you!

Over 12 weeks you’ll receive Exercise Plans, nutritious and delicious Menus, Mindset Videos and Expert Support to help you achieve your health and fitness goals.

 Head to 12WBT to join the team.