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6 Guilt Free Curly Workout Hair Tips to Try!

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Some of us wash hair every time we workout. But over washing curly hair is a big problem though. You don’t have to stop exercising just because you don’t want to ruin your curls! We know exercising is good for you so here are helpful tips for managing curly hair before and after workouts.

I work out twice a week.  The work around the house helps me move my body, break a sweat (save me money ha ha). But when many of you asked how to maintain curly hair while working out I asked members of a Facebook group and got several helpful tips. Read on –

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How to Refresh Curls after Workout

Curls can stretch out when tie your hair tight during workout. The sweaty hair can also go frizzy. So what do you do? You have three choices.

  1. Do nothing, just let your hair down, and let scalp air dry (at least!).
  2. Refresh your curls (without washing) see my go-to technique here.
  3. Wash the hair. But curly hair can’t tolerate strong shampoos everyday.

The popular weapon of choice? Cowash!

  • I go to the gym 4x a week and cowash almost daily but curls are fine. ~Athena
  • Sweat is water-soluble. I only cowash about once a week as my hair is quite fine and doesn’t like it when I do it too often, and just rinse thoroughly every day. I typically do sweaty exercise 3/4 times a week. Don’t use a pool too often but chlorine is co washable anyway. ~ Neasa
  • I workout 5x a week and, while I’m sure sweat is water-soluble, I am gross when I leave so I cowash. My hair doesn’t seem to mind. ~ Jennifer

My Top Cowash Reco:  Tap for Worldwide here & India here.

Remember this. If you wash hair more frequently go naked. I mean you don’t have to style every time you wash your hair. You can also use one and done product like flaxseed gel for a simple washday routine.

Should we wash hair after workout?

This is very subjective to your lifestyle and your hair type. ME? I have thick coarse hair and I wash my hair about twice a week, sometimes thrice. Since I workout only twice a week, I time my wash days on my workout day. Someone with long hair who also works out daily may not want to wash as frequently. In such a scenario you can just refresh your scalp. I like to use

Found Mell’s video about this really informative (and entertaining!) Check it out

Real Workout Hair Care Tips for Swimmers  

Completely wet your hair before getting in the pool, your hair will soak in less chemicals if it’s already wet. Completely rinse when done as well and cowash with conditioner. You can also apply a leave-in conditioner before getting in the pool. ~Laurie

So I took Laurie’s advice and loaded my hair with conditioner before entering the pool. Thanks, Laurie it helped. I put a shower cap under the swimming cap so the latter didn’t slip away. ~ Ruchira

I’m in the pool 5x a week (swimming teacher) Wet hair before going in – I sometimes leave some conditioner in too – rinse well afterward – I cowash 3x out of 5 and deep condition on Saturday (or saturated/) when I get out of the pool – leaving a conditioner/olive oil with few drops of argan oil mix in my hair after getting out of the water. ~ Hope

Saturating curly hair with warm water before swimming

BounceCurl sent a mailer about summer swimming and this is what it said: If you plan on swimming, then you definitely want to DRENCH your hair with warm water in the shower before getting in the pool.  Think of your hair like a sponge. If you place a wet sponge in a pool of water, it cannot absorb more water – the same theory with hair.  Drenching your hair with water means the hair shaft is swollen and can’t absorb either the chlorinated water or saltwater. After your hair is saturated with tap water, apply a quality conditioner designed for dry hair and leave it in! Make sure to coat the ends, roots and scalp.  After swimming, rinse out your hair thoroughly (at least 3-5 minutes) and use a cleansing conditioner.

Curly Hairstyles for Working Out

  • scalp massage then tie my hair up.
  • I also prefer using silk scarves to protect my hair while working out.
  • Love this hairstyle by Sophie Marie! I shared it with my 1:1 consults and they all said it works!

Best Conditioners

Curly Ellie Intense Conditioner  – I recommend this for wavy hair, high-porosity hair, color-treated and/or color-damaged hair. The protein in this conditioner penetrates the hair shaft for powerful protection and repair leaving hair looking smoother and silkier. Use Discount Code: HONESTLIZ to buy here.

Miribel Hair Cream – Discount Code: HONESTLIZHERE to buy from USA. Use code HONESTLIZ for India here. This is protein and glycerin-free! You can rinse it off like conditioner or leave it in like a hair cream too. Two in One! Buy here, they ship worldwide.

Giovanni Conditioner. This budget brand makes conditioners that will not dull, strip, or damage your hair. It’s 100% color-safe, paraben-free, and cruelty-free. More on my guide here.

Washing is one thing, what you do after the wash is important too. 

Curly Hair Tips for After  Workout

  • A quick ACV Rinse counts as a simple washday too!
  • Refreshing with DIY Hibiscus Gel works just as well
  • Coarse hair can restore moisture with weekly deep conditioning
  • Don’t use excess oils, your scalp produces natural oils anyway.
  • Detox with bentonite clay (so affordable!) once every 4th or 5th wash.

Add Protein to curly hair

  • The irony is that protein helps hair retain moisture. So if you find your hair is losing moisture faster than normal, regardless of the weather even, incorporate protein treatments with simple DIYs like Rice Water or Gelatin once a month to boost external protein! 

Do you gym or swim? What’s your routine? Leave a comment below.


Thank you for watching & reading! Need Hair Help? Ask Liz here

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7 thoughts on “6 Guilt Free Curly Workout Hair Tips to Try!

  1. I always wanted to know how to take care of curly hair in swimming pool because I have recently join a class. Reading through your article will now surely help me in a longer run.
    I’m so happy you have posted this blog!
    Thank you so much for your efforts and knowledge 🙂

  2. It is so good to have all the useful information and links at one place. I was thinking of starting cardio routine tomorrow and see! You read my thoughts!

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