Many people who work out frequently wash their hair just as frequently because of the sweat. This could just be because you feel dirty, stinky or because you think sweat might harm your hair. Here are the facts.
What is in sweat?
We sweat through two different glands:
Both glands produce sweat containing water and the minerals: sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
In addition, the apocrine glands also produce lactate, urea, bicarbonate and other substances which are attractive to odour causing bacteria.
Importantly, note that the exact composition of sweat varies according to what you've been eating and drinking, why you're sweating and how long you've been sweating. This is why one person might produce stinky sweat whilst another person produces odourless sweat.
Is sweat in any way bad or damaging to either your hair or your scalp?
Some of the constituents in sweat have skin moisturising properties. (Lactate and urea are found in many skin lotions.) Indeed, some evidence suggests that sweat may actually keep you healthy by helping to ward off certain microorganisms.
What if your hair stinks after exercise?
Does it really? After you've showered and dressed asked an independent but honest party to check if your hair smells bad, you'll find that it doesn't.
If you feel you definitely need a wash between your weekly was & deep condition, then just co-wash.
What do I do after exercise?
I jog 5 kilometres twice a week. I sometimes do strength training but I'm not very regular with that. My hair is normally in an updo so I just neaten it up after exercise and continue as normal.
At night, I massage my scalp with Neno Natural's Hair Growth Stimulator because some of the essential oils in it, particularly lavender and thyme, have cleansing and antibacterial properties.
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By Heather Katsonga-Woodward