This Workout Style Actually Makes Hair Look Thicker, Experts Say
Exercise comes with loads of skin benefits—including better mitochondrial health, circulation, and even stronger skin elasticity—but I’d be lying if I said there were no common beauty woes with working out. Some people develop a flushed and ruddy complexion, while others fear the dreaded “runner’s face.” As for your hair, your ‘do may turn frizzy, slick with sweat, and dented from elastics.
But today’s top stylists are flipping the script on post-workout hair. According to the pros, a naturally tousled style can easily make your locks look fuller. Ahead, learn how to master the root-lifting style.
How to enhance your post-workout hair
You heard it here first: Post-workout hair is officially on-trend. Take it from celebrity hairstylist Frank Rizzieri of Rizzieri Salon and Spa, who led the stunning ‘dos for the Tibi Spring/Summer 2024 hair looks this New York Fashion Week. Sure, the models may have had a full styling team to help them nail that “perfectly undone” texture, but Rizzieri assures me the look is just as easy to accomplish at home.
The first step? Workout as usual. Hot yoga, Pilates, HIIT, strength training—whatever type of movement strikes your fancy. Don’t worry about creating any dents or bumps in your hair, as the added texture will make your hair look even fuller.
Once you’re back in the bathroom, untie your locks and give them a spritz of volumizing spray. Rizzieri uses Aveda’s Volumizing Tonic, which adds just enough grit while depositing shine (thanks to its castor oil and aloe vera). You don’t have to section your hair or make it too perfect, he notes. “Just hit the top layer of the hair and around the hairline,” he says.
From there, you can tousle your strands with your fingers to help the product dry down, or you can use a blow-dryer on a low-heat setting to help evaporate excess moisture (this is especially helpful if you worked up quite a sweat).
Again, no need to section; Rizzieri recommends using your fingers to lift the hair at the root and dry the layers underneath. Feel free to finger comb your hair back towards the crown of your head as you dry to really emulate the post-workout style—this is a zero hair part zone.
He finishes the look with a skinny, ‘90s-inspired black headband, pushing back the accessory until he creates a tiny bump at the crown (by creating lift at the root, you also make hair look fuller). Emphasis on the word tiny: A fully polished poof might read more ‘60s vintage, but the textured, undone lift absolutely nails the ‘90s.
“There’s a fine line with hair,” Rizzieri adds. “You could [easily] be in another era.” The key with this look is to embrace the imperfections—the dents, the flyaways, the frizz. “It's almost like you went to the gym and then you put your headband on,” he adds. Walk out the door in your athleisure (or perhaps a balletcore get-up), and you’re set.
Want to create the illusion of fuller hair? Simply zhuzh up your post-workout style. Whether you’re actually coming from the gym or just want to look like you ran three miles (fair), you don’t have to commit to a full hair rinse. Gym lips are still popular, after all—it’s only natural we add “gym hair” to the forecast.
Jamie Schneider is the Beauty Editor at mindbodygreen. She has a B.A. in Organizational Studies and English from the University of Michigan, and her work has appeared in Coveteur, The Chill Times, and more. In her role at mbg, she reports on everything from the top beauty industry trends, to the gut-skin connection and the microbiome, to the latest expert makeup hacks. She currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.