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So you have a hellish day in front of you. Back-to-back meetings, a high-stress presentation, a chiropractor appointment after work (you know, to RELIEVE all the stress), and dinner plans with your favorite peeps.
Not to mention all the other crazy crap that crops up during an already-insane-day.
What about that sweat session you promised yourself? You accidentally slept through your alarm that you’d set to get your workout in before work.
How about over lunch? Wait — that requires a shower! Unless your high-stress presentation happens to be given to a client that you’re not hugely fond of … yeah … grooming before that presentation is highly recommended.
This is NO problem to a lady whose gym bag is packed with the right arsenal. And by arsenal, I mean primp and preen on-the-go products that leave you looking hotter than before you hit the gym.
Here’s what’s in MY gym bag for these crunch-time workout days.
[ low maintenance peeps: just make sure to pack a towel and maybe some clean undies! ]
Hair gear — tame that mane.
I have a LOT of hair.
[ Gratuitous photo of me from high school. Did I mention, I have A LOT of hair? ]
The only thing that keeps this massive amount of hair out of my face is a Goody StayPut headband. It must be the thick one. The thin ones do NOT work for me. Even when my hair is long enough to pony. It’s short right now, and the thin ones still don’t cut it.
Also, bobby pins are your friend. For many reasons. The obvious being that you can pin fly-aways or pin your hair back if you forget said headband as mentioned previously. But you can also use them to deviously mend clothing issues that may happen. MacGuyver if you will. Trust me. I won’t get into detail, but get some bobby pins.
I mentioned my hair isn’t long, but when it was, I always wore two skinny Ouchless ponytail holders around my wrist. Two because it usually took both to ponytail my hair. The thick ones broke with my massive locks. Skinny allows you double or triple them up. And wearing a few colors together on your wrist looks trendy … or something.
If I don’t get my hair wet in the shower, or sweat enough to look like I already showered, I use a dry shampoo if my hair needs some cleansing. Don’t do this if your hair is wet.
Otherwise, since I’ve got curls, I spritz with this amazing DevaCurl spray. Scrunch and done. Another option (even if you already have crazy THICK hair) is to spritz with a volumizing product. Any that you’ve tried should work. Those products make greasy locks look clean.
Also, scarves, decorative clips and other accessories are good to detract attention away from hair that just won’t behave.
Shower supplies — all the better to clean you with.
Four things you have to have in your bag if you plan to shower after your workout (if you don’t have them, you might as well turn around and go home): Towel*, flip flops to protect your feet from locker room floor scummies, deodorant, and a clean pair of underwear (self-explanitory).
*I have showered SEVERAL times at the gym without a towel … and used a t-shirt that I had in my gym bag. It’s not glamourous, but it works in a pinch.
As far as toiletries go, stock your bag with mini-sized travel versions of the products you love. Or get some tiny plastic bottles to fill with your favorite products from home. You can even get tiny spritz bottles for body spray or hair products. You can even pick up a ready-made travel kit from a drug store or super store.
Makeup-removing towelettes are handy (baby wipes work just as well if you’ve already got those around the house). Make sure to remove your makeup before your workout. Wearing makeup during a sweat sesh is a recipe for bad skin. They’re also good to have on hand in case you have an “oops” moment when primping after your shower.
Post-shower products — fend off the smellies, but don’t offend others.
Okay. I have one tip here. There’s an urge to spray more than what’s necessary after a sweaty romp in the gym and an ultra-quick shower. If you like to use perfume, skip it here. Try a light body spray instead. Chances are that if you wear perfume that you’ve still got some of it in the outfit you’re wearing anyway. Trust me. Your cube-mates will thank me for saying this