Skin Deep

Coffee, Stretching, Epsom Salt Baths: Life in Megan Rapinoe’s Skin

And how the soccer star became something of a skin care fanatic.

Megan Rapinoe

Megan Rapinoe, the star midfielder of the United States women’s national soccer team, for whom she has taken home multiple golds in the Olympics and the FIFA World Cup, is almost as opinionated off the field as on … her nighttime skin care routine, on fragrance and on fresh hair color.

Though her soccer season is on pause, Ms. Rapinoe, 34, is busy hosting “Prodigy,” a documentary series on young athletes on the new Quibi streaming service. She starts the day relatively “chill,” she said.

Coffee Fiend

I wake up and I immediately think how quickly I can get coffee. I usually do my workouts in the morning. Mostly, though, I’m coffee coffee coffee.

Midmorning Warrior

My workouts vary depending on the day, but usually it’s some sort of strength work and lifting, with cardio in the intervals. I usually start with yoga or Pilates as a 30-minute warm-up. They are essentially rehab exercises that I’m doing.

Because I’m old, I basically have to do all these extra exercises to get my body warmed up. This loosens me up, but it also helps me accept where I am that day. Is my back tight? Or is it my hips that are off? Then I can get ready for a big running session. All in, it’s about two hours.

For recovery, I’m definitely into an Epsom salt bath situation. I do that before bed and relax. Then I do a little stretching.

Diet Wise

I don’t think about a diet. It’s just that everything has to be really clean and simple. I don’t eat a lot of sugars. And I guess if you look at it, there is a macrobiotic sort of vibe. But I’m also eating to recover.

At dinner I do have a pretty strict thing in that my carb is always a sweet potato or a spaghetti squash as opposed to bread. But I do a simple carb for lunch. For a while, I was into the no-carb thing. But as an athlete, carbs are really your fuel source and low carb wasn’t working for me.

I also drink a ton of water. I can tell in my skin if I’ve been traveling a lot or if I’ve been drinking too much wine, maybe, and need to cut it out. I think people underestimate water and sunscreen in their skin care routine.

Conscious Skin Care

I’m very conscious of my skin care routine. Basically, I hit 30, and my twin sister, she was like, “I’ve started to notice that your skin has taken a turn for the worse.” When she said that, I was like, “OK, that’s kind of rude, but you’re not wrong.”

I have pretty fair skin, and that doesn’t mesh well with being a professional athlete in an outdoor sport. I wear sunscreen every day no matter what. I’ve been using Shiseido for a while. They have the best. I use the water-resistant one, and I like that it’s pretty matte and not too greasy. It stays on even through sweat, which is great until you want that stuff off your face.

That brings me to my next point. I’m sweating a lot every day. Foreo Luna Mini is bomb. I’m an ambassador for them. As a cleansing tool, it doesn’t get funky because of the material it’s made of. It just gets everything off and isn’t too harsh with the exfoliation. Being in the sun all the time, I can’t do harsh exfoliation every day.

Then I do the toner from Biologique Recherche. I also have one of their anti-aging serums and the colostrum serum. This amazing spa in Seattle — the Penelope spa in the Fairmont hotel — turned me on to the line. I went hard-core. I also have a moisturizer, but, oh my God, the price tags.

Basically my skin care game is that I go out in the morning and do all this damage and then get back in the afternoon and restore it. Maybe some people think it’s vain, but I feel like the health of the skin on your face is indicative of the health of your whole body. I want to be bright and not so sun damaged.

Hair Color Maintenance

My natural hair color is basically an uneventful brown that needs to be dyed. Even growing up, I had blond highlights. I was bleached and toned for years. Now I have it natural on the back and sides, but the top is still blond with color on top of that. It’s like a two-tone.

My hairstylist makes me this conditioner that has color in it, which is nice to freshen the color. Otherwise the color falls off the blond so quickly. Also, I don’t use shampoo because my hair is so dry at this point. I just use the conditioner.

Easy Makeup

I didn’t really get into beauty products until later in life. I grew up a tomboy, and these things don’t really mix. I thought if I wore too much makeup, that would be weird.

It took me a little time to get comfortable in my beauty skin — this play between masculine and feminine — without feeling weird about it. It’s about reconciling how I want to look instead of what I should look like, and that didn’t really happen for me until my late 20s, maybe even my 30s.

Now I’m piecing it all together and asking questions. I’ll ask my teammates what they’re using. Or I’ll look at what they’re using on me on a photo shoot.

On the field, I wear tinted sunscreen. I can’t wear any sort of mascara — that would just bleed all over the place. I do the occasional eyebrow fill-in, but I tend to wipe my face a lot.

Right now, I have a Dior foundation that’s pretty light and gives you that light, dewy look. I have a little highlighter from Becca, and then I have a Fenty pencil for my eyebrows.

I have pretty long eyelashes, but half of them are blonde so they don’t come out unless I put on mascara. If I need to bring them out to the world, I do a Dior brown mascara. Black is too harsh on me.

Finding the Scent

Santal 33 by Le Labo — I am devoted. I’ve been wearing it for a year or so. I’ve struggled with fragrance because it’s always so perfume-y. This scent could be a candle or a home scent. It just falls nicely.