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Photo: Michael Fertig/Unsplash
Photo: Michael Fertig/Unsplash

Forget the sneakers, sports bras, and strappy workout tanks. The most important thing to pack in your pre-work gym bag is a bottle of dry shampoo—but could you be OD-ing on the post-workout blowout-saver?

According to Yale School of Medicine dermatologist Mona Gohara, MD, and celebrity stylist Sunnie Brook Jones, there can be too much of a good thing, Real Simple reports. The pros recommend using dry shampoo no more than two days in a row.

“My general rule of thumb is two times a week max for any leave-in product that doesn’t involve washing the hair, unless it’s a hydrating oil,” Dr. Gohara tells Real Simple. “For some, [dry shampoo] can create irritation, or inflammation of the hair follicles. Most of the time, the scalp is un-fazed by dry shampoo, but when irritation does set in, it’s not fun.”

And by “not fun,” she means your scalp can get itchy and flaky—and hair loss is even a possibility. (Spraying directly on the scalp can create buildup that clogs the hair follicles as well, so Dr. Gohara says spraying on your hair—not your scalp—is key.) Another tip: Jones says if a formula lists alcohol as one of the first few ingredients, skip it, because it can majorly dehydrate strands.

Dr. Gohara and Jones advise choosing products wisely (we’re obviously fans of the all-natural varieties that don’t use talc or fragrance) and not dousing your whole head in powder. “Only spray the oily spots where you need it,” Dr. Gohara says.

Just remember to get yourself into a real lather (in the cleanest way possible!) from time to time, too.

There are many ways to get pretty post-workout hair—try these eight sneaky tricks. Or, when you’re ready to cleanse, you can wash the grime and dirt away with mud (yes, really).