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How to Prevent Helmet Hair

By Bonnie Friend

The vast majority of us want a healthier lifestyle, and changing our commuting behaviour to incorporate a little more exercise by cycling is a brilliant way to do it. However, the practicalities of cycling to work and remaining presentable enough for the day ahead can be at odds with one another, especially when it comes to helmet hair (because you’re a law-abiding citizen, and not wearing a helmet isn’t an option). So what can you do about it?

1) Use the helmet

Magazine Xovain.com says that as heat is good for styling your hair, you can use the helmet to your advantage: “Before putting my helmet on, I like to froof my hair and add some product. I usually just create a cloud of really strong hairspray around myself so my hair knows I mean business,” they said. They continue to say they then pile hair on top of their head inside the helmet while they ride, and then give it a L’Oreal model-style swish and a shake when removing the helmet and arriving at their destination, tidying it up with a handy travel-sized shampoo that they keep in their bag if necessary.

2) For long hair

Long hair is definitely harder to manage when it comes to helmet hair, but hairdresser Beata Nowak suggests that tight plaits and braids are a good way to prevent helmet hair because after you finish cycling, you can either shake them out or keep the style in place – just like you intended it to be!

3) For short hair

When it comes to preventing helmet hair on short hair, life is a lot easier, the trick here is not having it slicked to your forehead. Products are your friend post cycling, or simply running your fingers through your hair will probably do the trick. For slightly longer hair that you still can’t tie up, try a wide headband to keep it from slipping into your face while you’re cycling. Lululemon has a particularly stylish collection that is designed for sport but essentially looks great any time.

4) Embrace the beach look

Again for long hair, perhaps one of the best pieces of advice we’ve come across is to embrace the fact that in wearing a helmet, you are essentially agreeing not to have sleek hair, so adjust your style accordingly and aim for a beach vibe. Fashionmagazine.com suggests using a beach spray, such as Oribe’s Apres Beach Wave, before you put your helmet on. Part hair at the side, spray and scrunch before pulling it into a bun at the nape of your neck, then shake out when you arrive at your destination.

5) Carry a toolkit

If in doubt, bring a few corrective hair essentials with you when you travel. As a cyclist, you become pretty adept at strategic packing of anything that might be useful on your travels, so add in a few styling must-haves, preferably in travel form. Bring that beach spray with you, or add in an anti-humidity spray such as John Frieda’s Moisture Barrier Firm-Hold Hairspray. Dry shampoos and even travel-sized hair straighteners are also viable options – Babyliss Pro Cordless Straighteners are particularly useful because you don’t even need a socket to plug them into!