Anyone who works out knows that you should have a post workout recovery drink (or something). But what about your hair? Just like workouts & recovery drinks vary, so, too will your post-workout hair routine. Below are some guidelines to help keep your hair and scalp just as healthy as the rest of you.
What is the difference between sweat and oil?
Sebum, or "oil", is what helps keep our skin moisturized. It's often confused with sweat, but the two are not the same. Sweat is what happens when our body exerts itself. Sweat contains salt, which can be dehydrating. Just like you wouldn't bathe in salt water, it's equally as important to remove sweat from your body after a workout. How to remove it can depend on how much you sweat; so let's get into it!
If you sweat a lot
I mean like dripping, soaked through sweat. You will HAVE to shampoo your hair. It's worse for your hair and scalp to leave the sweat than it is to remove it. However, over washing can cause hair to then overproduce sebum, so if you're reaching this level of sweaty workout every single day choosing the right shampoo & conditioner system is incredibly important.
My favorite shampoo & conditioner system for every day, or even every other day, shampooing is Eleven Australia Hydrate My Hair.
If you only sweat a little bit
Not doing a heavy cardio day and going with some weights instead? You still have to do something to clean your hair. I have two options for you:
Option one: Rinse with water, then use a leave-in pH balancing spray.
When you rinse just with water you remove the sweat, but you also can raise your cuticle due to the pH of the water. This is why a post-rinse spray is super important. I like ONE Prep Spray from R+Co.
Option two: Co-Wash
A Co-wash is a cleansing conditioner that's more gentle than a traditional shampoo by removing dirt & product buildup without raising the cuticle and removing much needed moisture, protein, and even color. This my personal favorite method, and I use R+Co Analog.
If you don't sweat
This is most likely your rest days, or easy stretch days. If you don't sweat, you don't have to wash (hooray!)! The best thing to do is to take your hair down and use a dry shampoo. My favorite right now is Death Valley dry shampoo from R+Co, which is a spray version. If you've tried dry shampoo in the past and are sitting there saying to yourself "dry shampoo isn't for me" or some version thereof, try a different one! There are soooo many on the market, and they aren't all created equally. The most important thing to look for is that it's talc-free. Talc can clog pores, which can lead to break outs or worse - hair loss.
You'll also want to be sure to do a clarifying shampoo once a week to remove sweat, dirt, oil, and product buildup. If you color or highlight your hair, or even if you don't, I would suggest R+Co Acid Wash - which is pH balancing and won't strip color.
After every clarifying shampoo I always recommend a deep conditioning treatment. A favorite of mine is Television Hair Masque from R+Co.
Whoever you are, whatever kind of workout you have, and however much sweat you produce, I hope this helps keep your hair just as healthy as your body!
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