We all know how quickly a good sweat can destroy a good hair day. Working out regularly is—no question—great for the body, but it can also do major damage to the hair: Frequent showers can alter and leach hair color, leaving it brassy or dull; and tight hairbands can cause breakage. Plus anyone who has ever killed a workout only to find they’ve also blown their blowout knows the struggle is real. But does it have to be? With the help of these hair products, chosen for us by celebrity colorist Rachel Bodt, you can get your sweat on and save your hair, too. Read on for Bodt’s favorite products to stash in your bag and use before, after and during your next workout to leave the gym with that post-workout glow AND silky, smooth tresses. (Yes, it is possible!)
Created by a group of chemists and celebrity colorist to help repair damage and help prevent further damage, Olaplex helps repair bonds within the cuticle. Before your workout, use a quarter size or more and apply on dry hair from mid shaft to ends, combing through with your fingers. Then tie tresses away from the face and workout. This product must be shampooed out of the hair, so only use it if you are planning on shampooing and conditioning after you get your sweat on.
Ripping through your hair with a brush can take a toll on the hair, which is why I recommend investing in a Tangle Teezer. The soft plastic bristles help to get through knots without breaking or damaging fragile or color treated hair.
Every gym bag should contain a great dry shampoo. Over-shampooing can lead to dry and brittle strands; allowing the natural oils to come back and coat the shaft of the hair is one of the best things you can do. Dry shampoo helps to absorb sweat and oil from the roots and makes hair feel clean and fresh without stripping it. Some of my favorite brands are Living Proof Perfect Hair Dry Shampoo, Redken Pillow Proof Dry Shampoo and Klorane Dry Shampoo. Right after working out, I spray a liberal amount of product on roots only, then using a blow-dryer first on hot then on cold settings, I work the product throughout the lengths.
Sometimes stress, change in diet or other personal matters can take a toll on our hair, which can result in thinning and dryness, brittle or lifeless hair. If you notice a change in your hair during a stressful time or if your hair just changes unexpectedly (which can also happen to skin and nails), I recommend hair vitamins. I like Phyto hair vitamins, which contain a complex of biotin, fatty acids and antioxidants, to nourish the hair from the inside out.
During the summer months when hair is getting a beating from the sun, surf and sand, I like to regularly treat my strands to a Vita Coco coconut oil mask. I use it the same way I use Olaplex: I apply it before a workout ONLY if I know I am shampooing immediately afterwards. I only recommend shampooing 2-3 a week maximum. If you are a person who shampoos every day, you can wean yourself off this routine (and reap the benefit of having healthier hair) by shampooing every other day. As your oil glands get used to this new schedule, you can start shampooing every third day.
Cloth Hair Ties and Bands
When the hair is wet or damp it is at its most fragile state. You really want to avoid super tight rubber bands or elastics, because they can do a lot of damage to the cuticle, causing breakage over time. I love a fabric hair band because it is much more gentle. It also leaves less of a dent when you take it down, in case you are trying to preserve your style.
While I only shampoo maybe once a week, two or maybe three times a week I will use something called a cleansing conditioner. This product cleanses the hair without drying and stripping it. It wont lather because it doesn’t contain any surfactants, so it will take time getting used it, especially if you’re the kind of person who likes suds. I really love Pureology Cleansing conditioner in Hydrate (the mint in the formula leaves your scalp and hair feeling great) and I also love Purely Perfect.
Follow Rachel Bodt on Instagram: @Rachel_Bodt