Whether you are a regular gym goer, run every day or you’re starting up a new exercise routine, it’s likely you haven’t considered your hair health when it comes to exercise.
Yep, if you’re exercising on the reg, there are a few things you need to think about to upkeep hair health whilst you focus on your fitness. From choosing the best protective gym hairstyles to protecting your hair from sweat during exercise, we have rounded up all the top tips to keep your hair happy and healthy during every pilates class to 5K run, with the help of some haircare essentials.
How to Protect Your Hair Whilst You Workout
Protecting your hair whilst working out is all about minimising sweat and oil build-up, alongside avoiding breakage. If you prep your hair well before your workouts, you’ll find dealing with it afterward is a lot easier, and your hair will be much healthier.
Prepping Your Hair for a Workout
Before your next workout apply a hair mask, leave-in conditioner, hair oil, or scalp treatment to your hair and leave that in whilst you get your sweat on. The heat you produce during your exercise of choice will allow the treatment or mask to penetrate your hair and scalp more deeply. Plus, having nourishing products in your hair will help tame annoying flyaways during your gym session.
Choosing the treatment you are going to marinade your hair in whilst you work out is dependent on your hair needs, but we recommend anything nourishing and repairing, to help protect against breakage and dryness, which exercise can subject your hair to.
The By BEAUTY BAY Bond Repair Balm is the perfect leave-in hair mask choice to nourish your hair whilst you’re in the gym. Smooth this through your ends before styling into a protective hairstyle (we’ll come onto those shortly) and you’re ready to go.
If you want some extra hydration in your hair, plus the added bonus of a gorgeous fragrance whilst you get your sweat on, Sol De Janerio’s Leave-in Conditioner is a must-have. Douse your hair in this before you start your squats – your hair will be so hydrated, plus you’ll smell amazing.
You can workout with oil in your hair, and you should if you want to make the oil work harder and deeply repair your hair. Go for the By BEAUTY BAY Repair Hair Oil before your next workout. The oil will help create a super sleek hairstyle too – what’s not to love?
Protecting Your Hair from Sun and Sweat
If you workout outdoors, something you should consider is using UV protection for your hair, which is especially important for coloured and bleached styles. Whilst you might usually reach for a cap, this might actually be damaging your hair further. Wearing a cap during a workout will contribute to increased sweat build up on your scalp as it will trap the sweat and heat in, so going for UV protection for your hair is a better shout.
As well as ditching the caps, another way you can help lessen sweat build up on your hair is to use a dry shampoo beforehand. Dry shampoo will help keep your scalp dry during your workout and prevent a super sweaty head. This means your scalp will be happier and your hair will still look pretty presentable afterward. Go for the Olaplex Detox Dry Shampoo to achieve a healthy happy scalp post-workout.
The Best Workout Hairstyles
Now you know all about how to prep your hair with product before you start sweating, it’s time to get some more info on what types of hairstyles you should opt for.
Firstly, one thing you should definitely avoid doing is working out with wet hair. Wet hair is more prone to breakage and damage so avoid this for sure. And despite what you might think, scraping your hair back into a tight high ponytail is not what you should be going for either. It might be simple and gets all your hair out the way in one swoop, but a tight, high hairstyle puts a lot of pressure on your hair and can lead to excessive breakage.
To look after your hair you should go for a protective gym hairstyle. Plaits are a great option, they are gentle on the hair, keep it out of your way, and have the added bonus of leaving you with wavy hair when you take them out post-workout.
A bun hairstyle can also work well – whichever hairstyle you choose though it is key to use the right hair ties and accessories. Satin scrunchies are your best bet, they are much kinder on your hair. And if you’re not doing floor work, a claw clip can also work well, as long as it won’t impact your workout.
As cute as they may look, try not to leave any bits hanging down from your chosen style, we all love face-framing bangs, but hair touching your face during a workout is always annoying. Utilise gentle crease-free clips or bobby pins to pin back hair, your skin will thank you.
Don’t forget to use a towel whilst you workout to wipe away excess sweat – this will help stop your hair becoming saturated. Sweat might be a sign of a good workout, but it doesn’t mean you should let your hair get covered in it if you can help it.
Looking After Your Hair Post-Workout
Once your workout is over, there is still more you can do to look after your hair. Even if you have used a good gym hairstyle and used nourishing treatments whilst you work out, your hair still needs extra care.
First off, you’ll want to undo your hairstyle of choice after your session to let your scalp breathe. When brushing your hair, opt for gentle hair brushes like a wide-tooth comb or detangle hairbrush and be careful not to pull too hard. Even if you’ve looked after your hair during a workout, it is likely still a bit sweaty which unfortunately can lead to more knots and tangles than usual.
You obviously don’t want to let sweat and oil build up on your hair, but washing your hair every day if you have a super regular exercise routine can be damaging and drying to hair. To get the right balance, try to wash your hair every other day. And on those in-between days, there are a couple of things you can still do to avoid walking around with sweat-covered hair.
You can use dry shampoo to absorb sweat and oil, which makes pushing wash day back a breeze. Or you can even try blowdrying your hair on the cold setting, it really does work wonders at removing the sweat post-workout. These can be great solutions post-workout if you are in a rush too.
On wash days, post-workout you want to focus on hydrating your hair and avoiding heat, so that’s a no to heat styling where possible. Opt for hydrating shampoos and conditioners to add some moisture back into your hair after it being subjected to drying sweat and oil. You can’t go wrong with the By BEAUTY BAY Hydrating Shampoo & Conditioner duo. Use this post-workout for extra nourishment, and a much-needed deep cleanse to remove sweat buildup.
Adding in these pre and post-gym haircare routine steps can make all the difference to your hair health. Remember to nourish your hair and show it some TLC with protective gym hairstyles for great results. Habit-stacking haircare with your gym routine is easy and so worth it. Haul your haircare essentials today!