Working out with long hair

Keeping it Clean: Working Out With Long Hair

In Educate by El Rubio29 Comments

By now you know you shouldn’t shampoo your hair every day. If that’s shocking news to you, start with this post.

But if you have a regular fitness or workout program, you might be wondering, “what the hell should I do with it then?” If you’re a guy who works out regularly, you may need a little more guidance on working out with long hair.

Your first question might be how to deal with long hair while exercising. While some longhairs are savage like this guy and this guy and just let it fly, I prefer to keep it out of my face when I’m at the iron factory. For this task my go-to is a standard foldover, stabilized with a championship headband to keep the tail end in place for rigorous activity.

Long hair head band

Braids and other tie ups are good options too, but here we’re talking more about post-workout regimen. You workout, you sweat, your hair gets sweaty/grimy/oily faster than if you just lounge around all day, not to mention tangled and ratty.

Here’s a few techniques you can try and see what works best for you.

Assuming you still plan to shower after working out, you have a couple options to start with.

If you feel you have to cleanse, just use water. Massage your scalp with your fingertips the same way you would if you were using shampoo. Get in there, break up the oils and sweat and give it a good clean rinse.


While it’s true you don’t want to shampoo more than once or twice a week, you can (and should) use conditioner more often. In this case, if you’re cleansing with water, just use conditioner as you normally would.

Your second option is to simply leave it tied up while showering, trying not to get it wet. It will get a little wet, and it might be damp from sweat already. Stay calm.

All is fine and good until you finally let it down and it’s a sweaty, unsightly rat’s nest. You can still condition at this point, which can be very helpful for the next step. Use a spray bottle to get the tips wet then apply conditioner to the ends (it’s ok to leave it in).

Here’s where combing and brushing daily is important. Since you’ve worked out and you’ve sweat through the top of your head, this has released some of the natural oils from your scalp. That oil is good for your hair, but you want to distribute it evenly.

Comb first to get the tangles out. Use a wide-tooth comb, starting with the tips and working your way toward the scalp. If it’s really tangled you can use a de-tangling spray like this one.

Once you’ve detangled you want to brush thoroughly. And really, brushing is more about massaging the scalp than anything. Here’s a little more on brushing.

This is where the cleansing happens. Even though you’ve sweat, brushing properly will exfoliate your scalp while distributing all that oil throughout your hair, coating, protecting, keeping it healthy and giving it a nice shine. Especially if you find a spray you like, this routine will have your scalp and hair feeling fresh and clean and looking $$.

If you’re saying to yourself, “DUDE, my hair is just TOO greasy and grimy after I work out, this ain’t gonna fly,” here’s another option for you: dry shampoo.

combing long hair
brushing your hair for men
brushing your hair

Dry shampoo is a spray-in product that absorbs the excess oil from your hair and scalp and freshens you up. Simply spray it onto your scalp and hair roots and brush it through.

You’re dialed boys! Now you know what to do when you’re working out with long hair. Stay on the workout train and keep lettin it ride.

And of course, you can always find more in our Quick Tips.

man with long hair