Torn between keeping your hair bouncy and fresh or going to the gym? Learn how to keep both by reading our guide to maintaining healthy hair throughout the day.
We’ve all been there: when you skip a workout out of fear you’ll get greasy hair before an important event.
On a scale of 1 being not a problem, to 10 being overly annoying and a tendency to avoid at all costs, it’s fair to say that getting greasy roots the same day as a fresh hair wash is a 10.
Yet we can’t control our sweat levels, so short of living in perpetual angst and skipping workouts, the only alternative is to get savvy about how to stop our hair being outrun by our workout.
Consider it a way to win back the day. Living in a time poor economy, we no longer have the luxury of time to go home, shower, blow dry, style and reset our ‘do, before sneaking in an evening date night or dinner.
So to achieve some kind of a semblance of work life balance and stay healthy (both body and hair), the only solution is to find a middle ground and lean on a few hair care hacks so you can keep your scalp and tresses healthy pre and post sweat sessions.
With summer temperatures still at an all time high now feels the right time to test out a few new hair hacks to make your gym-to-work-to drinks transition all the more achievable.
But first, a little education on what actually happens when we sweat and how it affects our scalp.
What happens to my hair and scalp when I work out?
First a little on the science behind sweat and why exercising and producing sweat is good for us.
When we exercise at a high threshold, our sympathetic nervous system kicks in to support us, leading to our body temperature increasing, oxygen needs increasing and changes to our blood sugar levels.
In working to meet the increased demands to our physical, metabolic, respiratory, and cardiovascular efforts our body enters back into homeostasis, a balanced state where all systems are functioning well.
So how does this relate to sweat and our hair? Well, as the nervous system kicks in and as our internal body temperature rises, we naturally begin to sweat as a way to cool down.
While sweat is proven to be great for detoxifying skin, with studies showing it can support the detoxing of heavy metals and eliminate plastics absorbed by our skin,, if beads of sweat stay stuck around the hairline it can lead to bacteria build up on the scalp and result in naturally greasy hair.
If bacteria sets in it or is exposed to furthersweat, dead skin cells or residue from products, the odds of developing scalp acne or other inflammatory conditions like an itchy scalp, dandruff or psoriasis are much higher.
To avoid ending up with a grumpy scalp or sweaty hair, follow our simple pre and post workout tips to keep hair and scalp balanced no matter the workout, weather or calories burned.
6 Tips For Maintaining Healthy Pre And Post Workout Hair
Do: Pull hair back
Keeping hair firmly away from the face is a non-negotiable when it comes to exercise. It doesn’t matter if you’re doing hot yoga or a HIIT class, loose strands are a sure ticket towards absorbing sweat.
Keep hair pinned back using either our secure clips or if you really want to elevate your hair game and enjoy an added post workout gain, try braids. Braids will not only keep hair firmly off face but with a little hairspray to set them pre-workout, you’ll have an easy beach wave after, minimal effort required. Downward dog to drinks never looked easier.
Don’t: Be a hot head
By this we mean if you often find your scalp gets hot, itchy or flaky, then it could be that your habits are to blame for your angry scalp.
Scalp irritation occurs when sweat and bacteria starts to build up on the surface layer of scalp skin, producing an excess of sebum. Too much sebum = all of the above scalp reactions.
So if you have a tendency to sometimes skip showering or hair washing on gym days or cover it up with excessive amounts of dry shampoo after, this is likely the culprit behind your crown stress.
Bring relief and balance back by integrating a scalp serum into your shower routine (or dry roots) as needed. Simply segment hair into sections, apply the Crown Fix Scalp Serum to roots (post shampoo), massage in with fingertips or a scalp brush then blow dry for a fast and effective way to reinstate zen to your scalp and remove residue.
Do: Elevate your hair washing ritual
Rather than skipping a hair wash because it feels like effort, make your shower ritual a sensorial experience and self care act you look forward to.
For a salon grade hair washing experience you can do at home all you need is two elements: a scented shampoo - such as our Crown Cleanse Shampoo - and a good head massage tool.
Integrating a regular head massage into your shower routine will be a game changer - it not only relieves scalp tension and stress and cleans hair effectively but studies show it may also stimulate hair growth. Sign us up!
To stimulate the scalp effectively and get a massage as good as firm fingertips, invest in our scalp brush. With the brush in hand, glide the bristles in circular motions across the crown while using our Miracle Worker Scrub exfoliator or Crown Cleanse Shampoo to nourish hair and relieve tension at the same time.
Don’t: Workout In The Sun
…on the days where hair preservation is a goal. For example, if you are debating a lunch time run in the park or a treadmill session at the gym, always opt for the indoor option.
Exercising in the sun might be a great way to up the sweat factor, but venturing outdoors comes with its own set of challenges - think hair dehydration, colour damage and scalp imbalances.
A hat won’t stop scalp skin from sweating and becoming a breeding ground for bacteria, inflammatory scalp conditions and greasy hair either.
Aim to keep cool by sticking with an indoor venue, a shady spot or if it’s too late reduce the damage control with our Miracle Worker Scalp Serum post shampoo (or on dry roots if it’s the middle of the day ).
Do: Introduce A Cold Shower
Not everyday is a hair washing day (for most) but every hair washing day should involve a blast of cold water.
According to hair experts, if you rinse out conditioner with cold water at the end of a shower it not only closes hair cuticles and stops dirt and grease from getting in but also minimises scalp pores and maintain strong healthy and shiny roots.
Conversely they also agree hot water can damage hair roots and lead to weak frizzy strands (by stripping hair of its natural oils) so aim to keep it a lukewarm shower and finish on cold.
To get started apply our Head Doctor Conditioning Treatment through strands then quickly rinse out with cold water. Bonus tip: also introduce the Crown Fix Scalp Serum once a week to keep scalp skin extra perky.
Don’t: Over wash and over blow dry hair
To wash or not wash hair daily: it’s the ultimate catch 22.
On the one hand you have a quick fix solution to refreshing greasy hair in the moment, but on the other hand, you may be introducing a habit that leads to your scalp producing excess sebum and becoming even more oily.
Washing hair too often works to strip hair of its natural oils and so to combat it the hair works hard to then produce more oil to balance out the loss.
Signs you may be washing too often include: if hair is constantly dry and brittle, hair breaks easily, if scalp feels itchy or irritated or if hair gets oily and greasy after a day.
If any of these apply to you we recommend experimenting with washing hair every other day or 2-3 days for a week or two to see how it rebalances the scalp.
On non-hair washing days, combat oily hair by adding dry shampoo pre workout as this will keep scalp and roots dry and support the amount of sebum (oils) produced when sweating.
Note to self: if dry shampooing be sure to rinse and scrub extra well with our Crown Cleanse Shampoo and Miracle Worker Scrub (once a week) to remove excess product build up or residue that may be lingering on your scalp.