Published: March 9, 2016
The whole issue of looking great comes to a paradox when it involves working out. Whether you’re going to the gym, playing sports or engaging in any number of other rigorous pursuits designed to get you healthier and looking better and leaner—with maybe more of a sculpted physique—these activities increase your heart rate, burn calories and make you sweat. So, what could possibly be paradoxical about any of this stuff? All of it is good for you—provided that you don’t twist an ankle, break a limb or crash into something unexpected. Where’s the conflict? The answer is rather complicated, but quite important, for women everywhere. Yes,
Yes, exercise of all kinds is good for you, and yes, everyone should include at least a baseline level of working out in their lives regularly. That’s a given. And working out does and will make you look better than someone who doesn’t work out. Here is the thing, though: The improvements from working out are more broad-spectrum and extend over a larger time frame, so you couldn’t say that an extreme workout would be the best means of getting ready (i.e., looking your best,) for an elegant evening out at 5-star establishments and such. No, the way to ensure the best look is to prep with elegant makeup, attire, accessories and hair. In a bigger sense, working out until your dinner date arrives would be relatively counterproductive to looking right for the occasion.
Short Term vs Long Run
So, while working out does improve your looks, in the short term it can leave you looking fairly spent, ruffled, and messy, disheveled and like a train wreck. And particularly after working out, all that sweating you produced tends to settle in your scalp area, the first place you’ll notice workout-level sweating, and the last place that sweat will still be lingering, as your body cools back down. Then, even after the scalp and roots area of your hair dries—with or without help from a blow dryer—it never dries back to look good, post-workout. Surely something to do with all that sweat makes your dry hair consequently look dirty and greasy.
Don’t Stop that Workout
Does this mean that you should just plan on looking bad after your workouts? No. Does it mean that you need to forego working out anytime you need to keep looking good for the remainder of the day? No, not this either. You just need to know how to make your hair look presentable, post-workout, and with a few specifics, you can.
- Dry Shampoo: This is one item you should never be without. Keep some at home, and buy some just for your gym bag, so you’ll always have it for pre-workout. When sprayed closer to the roots than you would normally go, a powder-based dry shampoo will prevent a lot of your workout sweat from penetrating your hair and saturating your head.
- A Top Shelf Hair Refresher: Another “must” for everywhere you go, and wonderful, post-workout. The benefits from dry shampoo go beyond being cosmetic, too, as a good one will hydrate, smooth and condition your hair effectively. Some have absolutely amazing fragrances, and will neutralize your hair to totally refresh it.
- Think Beyond the Workout Ponytail: It might be easy and quick to do a ponytail for a workout, but not if you’ll need to take it down later. Nothing dents your hair like a tightly gathered ponytail holder. Instead of a ponytail, use a spin pin to create a high, loose bun/topknot that will, once taken down, transform into a voluminous head of softly waving tresses. Strategically positioned braids will achieve nice waving effects as well.
- Texturizing to Go: Post workout, leave that bun or braid style intact while you apply some nice texturizing spray, and follow by blow-drying. Once dry and cool, let your hair down, shake out, tousle and go!
- Don’t Shampoo–Condition: Get a conditioner that is formulated with cleansing (cleaning) agents, and use like you would shampoo, post-workout. At least done every other time, you’ll be treating your hair to a nourishing benefit half of the time, where you were previously only stripping it with shampoo too frequently.
- If You Must Shampoo: No matter the reason(s), there’s help here, too. You can restrict the shampoo to the roots. Secure your tresses in a topknot and cover it with a shower cap, baggie or suitable way to keep it dry. Wet, shampoo and rinse the roots only, conditioning if necessary, then rinse. Blow dry and remove top knot. A great way to thoroughly refresh even the stalest of workout hair!