How Top Fitness Instructors Maintain Such Great Hair

Anna Kaiser, founder and CEO of AKT inMotion.

I work out about five times a week, surrounded by super fit instructors from spinning to pilates, and while most students would probably cop to the occasional bout of body envy, I find myself fixating on something else: how do they all have such great hair? I would never do my hair before a workout, because it’d be destroyed in minutes, but these women seem to have unlocked the secret to bouncy, shiny, healthy strands in spite of rubber bands and constant exposure to heat and sweat. What gives? I had to ask.

Bethany Meyers, Director of Education at SLT.

Bethany MeyersDirector of Education (and instructor) at New York’s hot workout SLT, says it’s all about the tools. “Keeping a cute mane while working out all day isn’t easy. I always have bobby pins and a brush in my bag, but my favorite stay-in-place trick is a braid. Try a French braid on one side of your head or even three braids (two along the sides and one center) for a funky look that stays in place and looks great in or out of the studio.” 

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Anna Kaiser, founder and CEO of AKT inMotion in New York City, (it’s how Kelly Ripa stays ripped) swears by detangler and conditioner: “I use Kerastase Masquintense ($62) every day,” she says. “I only wash my hair every two or three days, but I always rinse the sweat out and condition.  My husband is a hair restoration surgeon and reminds me of the importance of getting the sweat out of your hair to keep the salt from drying it out. I also swear by It’s a 10! Miracle Leave-In Product ($18; it not only conditions, it de-frizzes, adds incredible shine, and nourishes damaged hair.”

SoulCycle instructor Samantha Jade.

Samantha Jade, a highly-coveted instructor at the ever-popular SoulCycle in New York City, can’t live without a restorative hair mask. “I teach around 15 classes a week and shampoo three to four times, but conditioning my hair after each ride is a must! I run a dime-sized amount of Moroccanoil Intense Hydrating Mask ($54) through my wet hair and once it dries, I’m left with beach-y waves. I also avoid hair bands (I ride with my hair down), and dryers or curling irons, to keep my mane as healthy as possible.” 

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Caitlin Krause, another instructor at SLT, keeps it simple with texturizing spray and braids. “I try hard to only wash my hair two to three times a week to keep it healthy, and I swear by Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray ($42). I’m also a huge fan of braid; I almost never wear my hair in a ponytail because it can be harsh on your hair and give you that weird crease. Braids hide dirty/greasy hair well—and they look fun!”

Allie Cohen, a top instructor at Barry’s Bootcamp in Los Angeles, is a devotee of dry shampoo. “I’ve tried them all and by far my favorite is Rene Furterer Naturia Dry Shampoo ($27) which I spray on my roots and the crown of my hair after blow drying. I’m also a big fan of a weekly coconut oil mask: heat a tablespoon of coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl for about 15 seconds, then massage the melted oil through your hair, focusing on the ends. Leave it on overnight and rinse in the morning.”

Barry’s Bootcamp teacher Astrid Swan McGuire.

Astrid Swan McGuire, another top instructor at Barry’s Bootcamp in Los Angeles, believes in the power of a high bun when it comes to post-workout hair happiness. “I always keep my hair up in a high bun while I work out; it keeps it out of my face and helps my skin stay clear, but also makes my post-workout look a snap.  As soon as I’m done working out, I take my hair down, gently towel dry my hairline, and then run my fingers through it to break up any moisture before I blast it with a quick blow dry. If it looks like it needs a little pick-me-up, I spritz on a little Drybar Detox Dry Shampoo ($20), Less is more for me but it does the trick!”

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