The Editors
Updated on May 23, 2022

Congratulations girl, you just finished the hardcore workout that you put 100% of your effort into. Whether you just completed running a couple of miles, lifting some weights, or doing your favorite workout, you are probably feeling the aftermath. With the sweat dripping down your face and your mouth’s thirst for water, you had a great workout and now you might be focused on your post-workout recovery routine.

But have you ever addressed your hair care? Yes, that’s right, there are ways you can prep your hair before your workout and ways to take care of it after. Keep reading to find out how sweating and working out impacts your hair and what you can do to make your hair’s life a little easier.

What Happens to Your Hair When You Work Out?

As you work out intensely, you sweat a lot, and since glands release sweat close to our hair follicles, your hair is sure to become wet, too. The main purpose and sole function of sweat is to regulate body temperature; it is a natural process you shouldn’t and can’t avoid. Salt found in sweat can clog the pores and dry out the scalp, though. Having sweaty hair after a workout can leave you feeling grimy too. Thus, how you are taking care of your hair before, during, and after your workout is key.

Low Messy Pony Hairstyle for Gym

Instagram / @dopamin3concept

These healthy hair care tips will help you address the sweat and keep your hair healthy:

Pre-Workout Haircare Tips

1. Use Dry Shampoo

You may be using a dry shampoo already on the days you don’t plan on washing your hair and when your hair might look a little greasy. If you plan on working out and you see your hair is looking greasy, throw in some dry shampoo. Applying dry shampoo when your roots are still dry (not damp and sweaty) will prevent your hair from appearing greasy after your workout.

Spraying some dry shampoo before heading to the gym will allow the dry shampoo to absorb any sweat or oil produced during your workout. It is important to remember that although dry shampoo is convenient, it is only a temporary fix, and you should still be washing your hair regularly.

2. Apply Proper Treatments

If you regularly use certain treatments in your hair care routine, make sure to stick to them. For example, if you experience frizzy hair, continue to spray in an anti-frizz treatment. If you deal with frizz daily and you find it becoming even more noticeable when you exercise, try working out in a cooler environment.

Maybe frizz isn’t an issue for you and you love to work out outdoors. In this case, remember to protect your hair from the sun. Just like applying SPF to our skin is important, it’s important to protect your hair as well. Applying SPF to your locks will prevent sun damage and your freshly dyed hair color from fading. You can also loosely tie a headscarf over your hair or put on a hat to block those intense sun rays.

Another great way to prevent negative effects of sweat on your scalp is deep conditioning your hair about every two weeks. A deep conditioner will bring moisture to your scalp and repair any damage.

Woman with Natural Hair Working Out Outdoors in Head Band

Freepik /@user18526052

3. Style Your Hair Correctly

When you go to the gym, do you have a go-to hairstyle for a workout? You might like to stick your hair in two French braids, a tight high pony, or just any style to get it out of your face. While getting your hair out of your face definitely helps, pulling it back super tightly can be damaging and eventually lead to breakage and even hair loss.

If you have been consistently working out for years, tying your hair back in a tight ponytail, and have noticed hair loss, you can look into women’s hair pills as a solution to promote healthy regrowth. To prevent hair loss, tie your hair back in a loose low ponytail or braids with a proper hair accessory. Using a snag-free hair tie or scrunchie is the best way to go. It is best to avoid any hair accessories that have metal as they can cause more breakage.

Needless to say, some salt in your hair may work like a salt spray and help the braids or twists give you some nice heatless waves texture after the workout.

Scrunchie for Workout

Instagram / @ponyohair

Post-Workout Haircare Tips

1. Coordinate Your Hair Washing Schedule

If you have a proper hair wash schedule, amazing! However, for those who work out, sticking to one can be a bit difficult. After working out, you can feel dirty and want to hop right in the shower to feel fresh and clean. But should you be washing your hair after every workout?

The simple answer is no, it is not advisable. Washing your hair after every time you exercise increases the number of overall washes dramatically and can dry out your scalp more than letting some sweat remain on it. If your scalp is super sweaty and you feel like you need to tend to your tresses, you can opt for a quick rinse of your roots. This will leave your hair feeling clean without it being stripped of its moisture.

2. Refresh Your Hair and Scalp

After working out, it is essential for you to refresh your hair and your scalp. A great way to do this is by brushing your hair. By brushing your hair, you will distribute the oils evenly throughout your locks and not let them build up on your scalp.

If you have curly hair, redefine your curls using a bit of a styling mousse together with a conditioning water. Some curlies also swear by using Ouidad No Sweat Post Workout Mist for getting lightness and bounce back into their locks.

No Sweat Post Workout Mist for Curly Hair

Instagram / @kristie_fitness

So don’t let sweat hold you back from getting in a good workout! Start practicing these healthy hair habits today and your locks with thank you for the extra love you are giving them.

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