Wait, Could Your Hair Gel Be Making Your Allergies Worse? Here's What To Know

Even if the saying goes, "Dress to impress," looking good isn't just about doing your glam to please someone else — it's also about feeling good and confident on the inside. A healthy hair care routine can be an integral part of this daily regimen.


That being said, did you know that the little habitual hair care steps you follow can actually cause some side effects? Furthermore, some products can result in certain effects seasonally or even have a permanent impact on your hair. Maintaining a consistent hair care routine is a tough job in itself, but what if you were told that the hair gel that you use might be making your allergies worse throughout the height of pollen season?

This might be the case for you, as it is for many people. Gel can increase the amount of pollen that gets stuck in your hair, resulting in scalp irritation if it is not removed. Luckily, there are ways around this problem.

What seasonal allergies are out there?

You may be familiar with allergy season and the trouble it brings, but it can help to familiarize yourself with what seasonal allergies actually are. Seasonal allergies develop when the immune system overreacts to something in the environment. In the United States, spring allergies start in February and last until the early summer. Usually during the spring and summer, pollen is what commonly causes allergies.


Pollen is an airborne allergen, which is essentially a seed dispersed from flowering plants, grass, trees, and weeds. Exposure to pollen can cause hay fever and allergic conjunctivitis while also evoking asthma flare-ups.

Those who suffer from an itchy, runny nose every year without actually being aware of what seasonal allergies actually are might be wondering how their hair products connect to these little airborne allergens. As it turns out, certain items like hair gel can actually attract pollen.

What hair gel has to do with your allergies

Sporting a sundress with floating locks of hair can be a vibe, and a good hair gel is what you may need to keep those messy strands of hair in place throughout the day. However, products like gel and mousse can leave a sticky residue on the hair, allowing pollen to latch on and stay put for an extended period of time.


Pollen is small and lightweight, meaning it can get easily trapped in your tresses with the help of your hair gel. Although the pollen may not directly go inside your nose, it can still create problems if strands of your hair come close to your face. Ideally, you should rinse your hair at the end of the day to eliminate the pollen. If you don't get a chance to do so, all of the pollen inside of your locks will be transferred to your pillow and bed, inevitably affecting your body.

Here's how to take care of it

Finding out that there is a link between your runny nose and your hair gel can be a downer. However, there are some tips to lessen the effects of hair gel on your allergies.

You can try switching out your hair gel to one that's more allergy-friendly and free of harsh chemicals to reduce inflammation and irritation due to pollen. You can also try swapping a heavy, dense product for a more lightweight styler. If pollen levels are high in your area, wear a scarf, a baseball cap, or a hat when you are going out to prevent the allergens from getting trapped in your hair.


If you are too busy to wash your hair at the end of the day, give it a good shake to dislodge the pollen. You may also want to tie your hair back away from the face to prevent irritation. Never re-use the same hair coverings twice without washing them, and remember to give your pets a good bath before cuddling — their fur gathers a lot of pollen, too.

It's best to rinse your hair daily, preferably at the end of the day. If you feel like this makes your hair too dry, you can skip the shampoo and just use a conditioner or water.