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The Ultimate Gym Hair Care Routine

photo of hair products perfect for the gym

Love getting in a good sweat session at the gym, but hate how it can wreak havoc on your hair? Yep, us too. But the good news is, it doesn’t have to be this way.

That’s right, you actually can have the best of both worlds and be a gym junkie without compromising your hair game. And we’re here to help.

To ensure you’re appropriately prepped (and primed) for your next trip to the gym, we tapped Redken artist Heather King, of the Radio Hair Salon Redchurch Street for her expert tips, tricks, and must-haves for your gym bag. Here’s what she had to say.

Gym Bag Must-Haves

There are a few essential items you’ll want to have readily available pre and post-workout. First things first, you’ll have to gather any medium or long length hair into a bun or ponytail to keep your strands dry and out of your way. King swears by Invisibobble hair ties for those that need extra hold, as well as some cute scrunchies (bonus points if they match your workout ensemble).

“These accessories are must-haves because they eliminate the pull/damage to the hair and can be released after a workout with minimal to no creasing of the hair,” she says.

You’ll also want to toss in your favorite dry shampoo as well. Whether you’re in between washes or are heading out for a post-gym happy hour and need to freshen your locks, the right dry shampoo, like Redken Dry Shampoo Powder 02, will refresh sweaty hair without dulling your color or leaving any residue behind. Its powdered formulation will also allow for a more targeted application so that you can apply it in all the right places.

A chic sweatband can also help to absorb sweat in real-time while towel drying your hair as you go and will prevent you from having saturated strands by the time your cool down comes along.

Dry Shampoo Vs. Regular Shampoo

While dry shampoo is indeed a miracle product, it won’t replace your regular shampoo routine completely. But King says how often you shampoo is really a matter of personal preference.

“Overwashing can cause your hair to dry out and strip natural oils, therefore, causing your body to produce more oil to compensate for what it’s missing—meaning your hair gets greasier, faster,” she explains.

So find a happy medium, but you certainly don’t have to shampoo and condition after every workout. A general rule of thumb is to wash your hair three to four times per week. But of course, if you went especially hard at the gym or are feeling like you need to freshen up, you know your hair best!

How To Preserve Your Hairstyle

There are plenty of excuses to take a much-needed rest day, unfortunately, having a fresh blowout doesn’t qualify as one. If you’re worried about your spin class ruining your bouncy blowout, King’s got just the trick for you.

“Applying dry shampoo before a workout allows your sweat to be absorbed in a more productive way (think of it as a preventative measure) and then you need less once you’ve finished your workout,” the stylist says.

If you don’t have a fresh blow out, but don’t want to worry about walking out of the gym with a disheveled mane King suggests, braiding your curls, or rocking a blowout safe bun.

The stylist also recommends blow-drying any sweat from your hair once you are finished working out, and before applying dry shampoo. Never apply dry shampoo to wet hair! It’s designed to absorb oils, not water or wet sweat.

Not a dry shampoo fan? All is not lost.

“Consider washing your hair with a lightweight conditioner every other day,” King suggests. “This way, you get fresh locks without the over washing!”

One of our favorites is Redken’s Nature + Science Color Extend Sulfate-Free Conditioner, which is formulated with high-performance, naturally derived ingredients.

Whether you’re a gym rat or a newbie, equipped with King’s tips you’ll have flawless hair every time you leave the gym.

Interested in more tips and tricks about how to preserve your hair before, during, and after the gym? Use our salon locator to book an appointment with a stylist near you.

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