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Post Workout Haircare: Do’s & Don’ts

It’s the start of the year which means that if you’re like me you’re back at the gym and trying your best to stick with it! Like most people, I tend to reflect on my health and wellness at the beginning of the year and try to set some goals for the next 12 months.

Upon investigating some summer haircare tips for my first collab article with Pantene (which you can read here by the way) I discovered that I have been TOTALLY neglecting my hair post-workouts. In fact, post-workout haircare is a thing. A BIG thing! So here come some helpful hints and do’s and don’ts.

Don’t wash your hair every single time you work out.

Yep that’s right… DON’T! I know what you’re thinking (gross!) but washing your hair too often can actually be harmful to your hair. If you wash your hair more often than is needed you will strip your hair of essential oils and ultimately dry it out.

When you do wash your hair make sure to use a shampoo that replenishes it. I’ve specifically been using Pantene’s Repair & Protect after gym as I find it helps my hair not feel so dry.

Keep baby powder in your gym bag.

Another trick to avoid over-washing and to further avoid sweaty, oily roots is the good old baby powder trick. Simply add some baby powder to your roots and voila! Fresh as a daisy.

Don’t tie your hair too tightly.

I know that the only person who looks super hot with loose hair while sweating is Jennifer Beals in Flashdance and most of us opt for a tight ponytail or bun but the latter is actually a no no. Tight hairbands will break your hair while you workout and can actually pull your hair out at the roots. This is especially true if your hair is already dry and brittle from being colour treated.

Try and keep your hair loose. A great hairstyle to work out in is a loose french braid.

Not all head bands and hair ties were born equal.

So these days there are head bands and hair ties made specifically for working out. Brands like Under Armour are using fabrics that are soft on the hairline and ultra sweat absorbent. Generally hair ties like these are preferable and cause less breakage. Shop around and find some that suit your choice of exercise.


These are two types of hair ties that I find don’t damage my hair as much as others. Invisbobble’s are amazing! They also don’t leave a kink in your hair like other hair ties.

Switch it up and wear your ponytail in different places.

Hairdresser Dana Ionato said she noticed that women were coming into her salon with breakage in spots where they repeatedly tied up their hair. So switch it and tie your ponytail in different places on your head.

Prep your hair pre-workout.

I can see you rolling your eyes but hear me out. Adding a little bit of baby powder to your hair (the one I mentioned you can use AFTER your workout) is a great way to prep your hair for sweating. When we sweat our body releases toxins that we need to get rid of. This includes lactic acid which can, over time, contribute to hair loss. Especially in the hairline area.

Conditioner is not only for afterwards.

If you plan on washing your hair after your workout then consider working out with a little conditioner moisturised into the ends. This can help prevent your hair from drying out especially at the gym where more often than not air-conditioners can cause havoc on our hair.

Another option is a hair mask. I recommend Pantene’s Intense Repair Mask.

Protect your hair from the sun.

If you’re an outdoor enthusiast and working out in the gym is a nightmare for you then you most definitely need some extra protection. In short, cover up! Run or workout with a hat, always. I asked the question, “Can your hair get sunburnt?”, and you can find the answer, and more useful summer haircare tips, here.

For more hair care tips and inspiration follow Pantene South Africa on Facebook here and Pantene International on Instagram there. You can also find me on Instagram here.

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