Hair products

8 Best Hair Products for Sweaty Scalps, According to Experts

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As the sagacious old proverb of Home Goods framed prints goes, “The cure for everything is salt – sweat, tears and the sea”. Although my inner self doesn’t argue with the latter two (I’m a Cancer, after all), I raise my eyebrows at the “sweat”. I don’t like it anywhere and rarely consider it “cure” especially if it gets near my scalp. But as temperatures begin to soar and summer draws closer, oily roots and oily ponytails are inevitable…or are they?

According to cosmetologist and SalonCentric store manager Carlie Kazimir, that’s not the case. “That’s the magic of dry shampoos: they save you from having to wash your hair for days,” she says. Yes, even on the most sweaty and swampy days of summer, the right products can save your hair from another one washing.

Dirt on sweat, according to the pros

If you’re like me, sweat can conjure up a negative connotation. Turns out Home Goods was right – sweat *can* be a good thing, even in our hair. However, it is essential to mitigate this in hot climates or during exercise.

“When it’s warmer, we sweat a little more, which makes sebum – the oil that our scalp naturally produces – easier to move around, causing a greasy feeling,” says Stephanie Sey, trichologist and hair specialist. hair care brand Grow Gorgeous. “It may affect some more than others, other factors, such as hormones, causing some people’s scalp to produce more oil.”

For some, this might not cause any problems. For others, however, it could change the appearance and texture of the hair (i.e. that greasy, oily look), cause odor or sensitivity to dandruff. “Sweating is a healthy bodily function, however, we need to rinse sweat from our hair because it can dry it out. Once the water evaporates, it leaves salt residue that can dry out the hair,” says Sey.

You can certainly shower and wash your hair, but make sure you don’t over wash it. It may seem counterintuitive, but the more you wash, the drier your hair and scalp will become, which can lead to After oil production and defeat the purpose of washing it in the first place. Sey suggests washing normally with non-drying products. “Shampoos containing salt/sodium chloride as one of the first 3-5 ingredients can be problematic,” she says.

Other red flags include words like “hydrating” or “moisturizing,” says Kazimir. “When your scalp sweats, it produces excess sebum, which means adding more oil will only make it oilier,” she says. “Don’t use coconut oil, argan oil…don’t put conditioner on your scalp and use the product in the middle of the shaft [of your strands] for your purposes.”

As for green flags you want in hair products for sweaty scalps, Kazimir recommends looking for words like “clarifying” or “purifying” and ingredients like mint and eucalyptus (as long as you don’t overdo it , which can further dry out the scalp). Absorbent ingredients, like charcoal or rice starch, are also great. Sey swears by niacinamide, a form of vitamin B3. “It helps in the production of collagen, improves the quality of the skin and also helps the scalp to create a lipid barrier on the surface of the skin, which means it helps to retain moisture for longer, which helps lessen the drying effects of sweat,” says Sey.

For some, sweat is a cure. Others are looking for a cure for scalp sweating. Stock up on these products for a clean, dry scalp all summer long.

The 8 Best Hair Products for Sweaty Scalps

best dry shampoo spray

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day (PhD) Advanced Clean Dry Shampoo

Living Proof Dry Shampoo, Perfect Hair Day — $28.00

If you were to ask the W+G team what their go-to dry shampoo is, you’re bound to hear “Living Proof Perfect Hair Day” unanimously. While other dry shampoos simply rely on the follicle to absorb grease and sweat, Living Proof cleanses your hair, giving it a fresh wash without the actual wash. Its high-tech formulation degreases your scalp while you wear it and releases a burst of fresh goodness in record time, so your hair always smells great.

Best powdered dry shampoo

R+Co, Skyline Dry Shampoo Powder – $28.00

If you prefer to vacuum up grease and sweat with a dry powder shampoo, do it with R+Co. It comes in a pump (although it’s not an aerosol) that lets you get some really technical insight into which parts of your scalp need a little TLC. Its super-absorbent formula is enriched with mane-loving ingredients like burdock root extract known for its antioxidant properties and jojoba seed oil, a lightweight conditioner that adds shine but not weight. Its fresh, clean scent doesn’t hurt either.

Best post-gym spray

Davines, Hair Refresher — $30.00

For those days when your hair just needs a refresh, get Davines Hair Refresher. It’s technically a dry shampoo, but it’s a little hazier and less sprayy than your typical spray can. Its star ingredient is rice starch which automatically sucks up sweat on even the hottest, boggy days, giving you a cool, “I swear I showered this morning” feeling. A warning: by using it, you will almost never want to shower again. Almost…

Best scalp treatment

Awaken Surface, Awaken Treatment — $33.00

Kazimir recommends the entire Awaken Surface line for oily hair, but if you really struggle with sweat and grime, this treatment should do the trick. “It’s designed to change the pH balance of your hair and scalp,” she explains. “So whatever that challenge is – oiliness, dryness or any other issue – it helps balance your scalp back to a healthy point.”

Best Scalp Booster

Grow Gorgeous, Scalp Care Volumizing Niacinamide 10% Scalp Booster – $30.00

As Sey mentioned, products containing niacinamide are essential for regulating oily scalps because they help with collagen production and help retain moisture. If you struggle with sweat and oil and want to boost hair growth, she recommends laying the groundwork with this booster from Grow Gorgeous. Its use is simple: after your wash, massage it into your scalp and let it work like magic (don’t worry, it won’t dry out greasy). Your hair will be set up for success, literally, from scratch.

best clarifying shampoo

Christophe Robin, Purifying Cleansing Scrub with Sea Salt — $53.00

The days when it’s then hot you seem to come out of the shower sweating? Use this trick. This purifying shampoo from Christophe Robin is ultra-clarifying, blended with sea salt to really detoxify and cleanse the most sweaty and stinky scalps. Your scalp will thank you for rubbing this minty, tingling substance all over, and your strands will be whistle-clean, ready to stave off oil and grease even when the temperatures rise.

Best Texturizing Spray

Amika, Un.done volume and matte texture spray — $27.00

As Kazimir mentioned, those who suffer from a clammy scalp need to be very careful about what products they add back into their hair after it’s dry. This matte-textured spray from Amika answers the call for a less sebum product that gives hair volume and life. Instead of salt, it uses zeolite (another natural mineral) to give hair a windswept, “undone” look without weighing it down.

Best root reviver

Sunday II Sunday Root Refresh Micellar Rinse with Apple Cider Vinegar – $31 Shop Now

Sunday II Sunday, Root Refresh Micellar Rinse with Apple Cider Vinegar — $31.00

No gym bag or yoga bag is complete without that tangy root refresher that wicks suck up to the surface. It is formulated with apple cider vinegar which helps balance scalp pH and bacterial growth. After your sweatiest session, spray this product on your roots and use your fingers to distribute the product – you’ll notice almost instantly how much it brings life back to the hair (and makes it smell fresh too).

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Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.