Protect your hair from the drying effects of a swim in chlorinated pool water. This advice includes pointers on which products to use and how to fit a swim cap.
6 Simple Ways to Swim-Proof Your Hair
Without enough protection, hair can become dry and discoloured in the face of chlorinated pool water. In what ways can you look after your hair? First up, always shower before each swim to stop strands absorbing too many chemicals. Even better, put on a swim cap as well. Afterwards you’ll want to carefully shampoo and condition, paying special attention if you’ve recently dyed or chemically treated your hair.
Shower first to stop hair absorbing chlorine
You might already have a quick dash under the shower before entering the pool, but do you make sure to get your hair fully wet? If not, strands will absorb lots of water, including their damaging chemicals. Take a minute to shower properly and let your hair ‘fill up’ on clean water.
Use oil to protect your hair
Once your hair’s wet, apply some coconut oil to the palms of your hands and run these through your hair. Not only will this nourish strands but it will also make them slightly waterproof, helping to fend off the chlorine.
Swimming outdoors? By spritzing on some UVA protection spray you can stop your locks from drying out in the sunshine.
Wear a swimming cap
In addition to its streamlining effects, the humble swim cap hides away your hair, exposing less of it to chlorinated pool water. Find yours tricky to put on? Position the cap low on to the centre of your forehead and stretch it over in one movement. Pull the cap down as far as you can and tuck any leftover hair into the back.
Shower after your swim
Take care to thoroughly wash out any chlorine in the shower afterwards. Most likely the wisest choice is a specialist after-swim shampoo designed to remove chlorine deposits. Failing that go for a clarifying shampoo or, if your hair is dyed, one specifically for looking after colour. Rinse your hair well, then slather on a rich conditioner or a conditioning treatment to restore moisture.
Be careful with dyed hair
After a colour treatment, tint or set of highlights your hair is at its most vulnerable. Try to avoid swimming for at least the next week so the chemicals have time to settle, free from any reactions, discolouration or strand breakage. The same goes for new hair extensions – go easy for a few days to give the bonds a chance to fix.
Add some hair oil to finish
You’re almost ready to go. It’s worth taking another 30 seconds to put on some nourishing oil or product.