As the weather warms up, so does that feeling that we should really up the ante at the gym ahead of beach season. And although it would be nice to always head home for a leisurely shower post-workout, many of us are squeezing in workouts on our lunch breaks, between school drop-offs, or (if you’re really ambitious!) early mornings before heading into work.
With that in mind, we’ve put together a gym bag checklist for when you’ve got places to go and people to see! It’s fully equipped to take you from the gym to the street and will leave you feeling fresh, gorgeous and ready to tackle your day head on. Here are the gym bag essentials you should never hit the treadmill without…
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Two Different Towels
Never hit the gym without two towels in tow – a small towel for your workout sesh and a big towel for your shower. Carry the small one around the gym to wipe down equipment (and yourself!) when you’re working up a sweat. And one of the best post-workout tricks when you’re running short on time is to slash soapy water on your chest, back, and under arms then towel dry. It’s quicker than a shower but won’t leave you sitting in sweat all day!
Hairbrush & Hair Ties
Most of us can’t workout without tying our hair back. However, sweating with a tight ponytail can create a serious crimp in our hair which then takes time (that we just don’t have!) to iron out. To avoid this, try wearing a scrunchie during your workout instead of a traditional elastic. And make sure you pack a hairbrush if you do decide to wear your hair down afterwards! Try: Toni & Guy Cushion Brush and Lady Jane Scrunchies
Bringing a loofah to the gym might seem weird, but hear us out. One of the worst culprits of bacne is not effectively cleaning your skin after a workout. And most gym showers don’t come equipped with communal body scrubbers (which tbh would be gross!). You need something more than just your hands to actually wash off the sweat and unclog your pores, so bringing your own loofah to the gym is essential to keep your skin clear, especially if you workout often. Try: Bodecare Organic Egyptian Loofah
Throw a pair of cheap thongs in your gym bag to wear while you shower and get ready in the changeroom. Communal, damp areas like this are a breeding ground for bacteria that can be a serious threat to your foot hygiene. Nothing will deter you from wearing open-toed shoes this summer like a plantar wart or toe fungus!
Cleansing your skin after a workout that has left you covered in sweat is a crucial step. Clean skin is a non-negotiable before applying anything else on your face. Gentle enough for all skin types and conditions, Cetaphil’s Gentle Skin Cleanser can easily double as a face and body wash. Perfect to apply to your face after a vigorous workout, your skin will instantly feel soothed and refreshed.
Another gym bag (and life) mainstay is dry shampoo. Washing your hair is already such a chore, and it shouldn’t be something you do on a time crunch, especially when you’re not in the comfort of your own home! Having a good dry shampoo means you can avoid carrying around a shampoo and conditioner, and it’ll keep your hair looking voluminous and fresh no matter how much you sweat. Try: Batiste Dry Shampoo in Blush
A Multi-Tasking Tint
Your gym-bag makeup kit has to be small enough to carry around all day, so opt for products that do more than one thing! For something that can give your cheeks, lips and lids the perfect amount of flush in a single product, look no further than a multi-tasking tint. A cream formula means easy blending and less chance of shattering than a compact powder too. Try this super travel friendly version: Frank Body Lip & Cheek Tint (available at mecca.com.au)
Another multi-tasking must-have is a 3-in-1 face and body lotion with SPF. This will save you from needing to carry around multiple heavy products without having to sacrifice anything. Opt for one that’s fast-absorbing so it doesn’t transfer to your clothes and is gentle enough to use on your face. Try: Ultraceuticals SunActive SunActive SPF 50+ Face & Body Lotion
Obviously you can’t hit the gym without deodorant on hand. A non-negotiable beauty and general hygiene product: stash one in your desk, your handbag and your gym bag, just to be safe (oh and maybe your car too). Try: Mukti Organics Botanique Deodorant or Dove Clear Touch Anti-Perspirant Deodorant
To add a little bit of luxury to your gym bag, a roll-on perfume is the perfect addition when you’re heading straight to a meeting (or maybe out on a date?!). While many fragrances are available in a roll-on or travel size one of our personal favourites is the Jurlique Essence of Rose Roll-On Fragrance Oil.
What else do you think should be a mainstay in your gym bag?