We’ve all been there: you need to work out but your mane is already clean and styled, and you’ve got a hot date with a WebEx later in the conference room where your judgy CFO will stare curiously over her Oliver Peoples lenses at the frazzled mess that third round of Burpees left on your head. What’s a gal to do?
Fear not: there’s hope for the well-tressed to stay toned (and we’re not just talking removing brassiness). Here are some finely tuned strategies for keeping your hair looking fresh even through exercise:
- Dry shampoo. GIRL. Get on this track. Dry shampoo absorbs excess oil and even adds a little volume. Heck, I use it just to style sometimes. Spray it at the base of your roots and use your fingers to massage it through your hair; then brush it out. Make sure you don’t leave the excess white powdery bits on your hairline or people will think you wiped your brow with Lindsay Lohan.
- Wrap it up. Keep your hair dry and sweat-free in a long workout with a cotton headwrap. Wide headbands work (just make sure to X your bobby pins on each side so it stays through a vigorous Zumba-ing) or fully commit with a silk scarf or doo-rag (not kidding – the silk is great for avoiding frizz).
- Blow it dry. Ever seen those hairdryers in the LA Fitness locker rooms? (They’re hard to notice past the envy-inducing visage of those gym girls who make you wonder, “Why are you even at the gym? If I were you I’d be naked eating donuts in the street 24/7. But then all those donuts are probably why I’m at the gym…”) Anyway, here’s the trick: wipe off the excess sweat so it isn’t smelly and then flip your head upside down and blow-dry your roots until the sweat dries out. You’d be surprised at how little it smells (a little body splash never hurt of course), and if you keep the heat low and near the roots, you won’t damage your hair with heat. Bonus: volume!
- Use a leave-in. If you’re frizz-prone, live in a dry climate or are working out outside, you might get frizzy, dry hair from your workout as much as oily, sweaty hair. A leave-in can help combat this. Combined with technique #3, you can reach a nice state of not-too-oily, not-too-smelly equilibrium.
- Stay high. A high hairstyle, that is, like a high-ponytail or a bun will keep the mass of your locks sweat-free and ready to rumble.
- Quit worrying about it. I know that doesn’t sound like something I would say when it comes to beauty, but listen – this is the MOST important point on this list:
Beautifully styled, clean hair=temporary.
The body you’re working toward=permanent.
Skipping a workout or lowering its intensity because of your hairstyle is the fitness equivalent of wearing makeup to bed so your hubby doesn’t see your zits. Really?
Don’t let momentary vanity stop you from a longer-term gain. And if you allow this subject – hair – to dominate your mind while you work out, you’ll subconsciously guard that hair and lose out on some of your workout success. Let it fly. When it comes to fitness (and most things *cough*), harder is better. Consider your slightly dirty and disheveled workout hair a badge of honor. Rock it. Own it.
What do you do for your style when you work out?