Are you longing for the day that summer officially arrives so that you can lounge by the pool? Maybe swimming laps is your favorite exercise, or perhaps you’ll just take a dip to find relief from hot weather…
No matter where you swim, or how crystal clear the pool’s water, there’s an invisible threat lurking–chlorine.
Sure, chlorine has its uses–killing harmful bacteria in the water and preventing algae growth. But this naturally-occurring element also strips the oils from your skin and hair.
Repeated exposure to chlorine leads to dry ends, brittle strands, and an extra-oily scalp (as your oil glands overcompensate). Perhaps more importantly if you pay top dollar for salon services, regular swimming will strip your expensive hair dye, dull highlights, and weaken chemical processing.
Thankfully, there’s a three-step process that will effectively protect your hair, preventing it from feeling (and looking) like hay. Here’s a quick breakdown on swimming hair care:
1. Soak Your Strands in Fresh Water Before Swimming
Your hair is like a sponge, soaking up what it comes in contact with. And, like a sponge, it can only get so full!
That’s why it’s important to douse your hair in the shower before swimming. Allowing your hair to soak up unchlorinated water will reduce its ability to soak up the stuff it the pool.
2. Apply a Protective Barrier
After your hair is thoroughly drenched, it’s time to add an extra layer of protection–oil or silicone based products are best.
For example, you can use a silicone-based hair serum, the type meant to calm frizzies and protect hair from heat-styling. Another option is coconut oil, which also delivers shine and moisture to your parched locks.
If you’re worried about hair being weighed down by heavy products, chat with your Hoshall’s stylist to learn products on the market are designed particularly for this problem.
3. Slip On a Swimming Cap
Tucking your strands into a latex or silicone swimming cap won’t block contact with chlorinated water completely, but it slows the process and prevents your protective product from rinsing away before you’re finished swimming.
Finally, don’t forget to give your hair a good wash post-swim, since chlorine’s stellar reactive properties make it difficult to shake. This means that you might need a specialty shampoo that’s designed to rinse out chlorine and minerals, such as copper, that are responsible for turning your locks green.
Don’t have any swimmer’s shampoo handy?
You can also concoct your own with a mix of one part apple cider vinegar to four parts water and pour it over freshly washed hair. The vinegar acts as a natural (and gentle) clarifier that will keep your hair smooth and shiny. Then, do a final rinse, and your hair is ready for styling!