Swimming is a sport enjoyed by many people. It can be a leisure activity or a career. However, spending lots of time in pool water is not the healthiest choice for your skin and hair. People who swim regularly complain about hair damage or what is known as swimmer’s hair.
Swimmer’s hair is hair that is damaged due to exposure to chemicals in a treated pool or the ocean.
First, pool water is chlorinated to kill unwanted bacteria and keep swimmers from infections and diseases. Regular exposure to chlorine in the pool removes healthy oils from your hair, leaving it dry and brittle.
Chlorine exposure can as well change your hair colour and cause dry split ends.
How does chlorine affect hair?
Since pools are mostly treated with chlorine, its strong oxidising power is believed to cause hair damage. For example:
- It can change hair texture and colour.
- It dissolves hair protein in the hair cuticles, which makes hair lighter.
- It strips off natural oils from your hair, leaving it dry.
- It causes itchy scalp and dandruff if one has sensitive skin.
- It Weakens hair resulting in split ends.
Caution and extra care should be taken to avoid damage. You should know your hair type, and the amount of time you will be spending in the water.
Recommendations for pre-swim hair care:
- Wet your hair before swimming. The hair strands will absorb the water, which will prevent excess water with chlorine from being further absorbed.
- Use a leave-in conditioner.
Wear a swim cap. This is a good way of protecting your hair from treated water. When a swim cap is worn over conditioned hair it can lock in moisture.
Apply oil. Hair oils like castor, olive, or coconut oil can be an option if you don’t have a leave-in conditioner. Avoid too much of it as it can cause the swim cap to move.
Put your hair in a protective style like a bun, cornrows, or braids before swimming.
After-swim hair care
After swimming, rinse your hair thoroughly to remove chlorine. You should wash with normal water to remove any build-ups.
Comb out your hair before it dries out completely. Make sure you comb it out evenly to fight any tangles, frizz, and strand breakage.
Apply oil/leave-in conditioner, Just in case you did not do that before the swim.
A deep treatment routine care from a professional is recommended at least once a week. Doing this will leave your hair healthier and fuller.
Shampooing and conditioning your hair is good and healthy, but it is important to note that overdoing it can cause more damage.
Overuse of hair products can cause dryness and clog the pores of your scalp, leading to inflammation which can cause other severe conditions like dandruff.
What swimmer shampoos do and what to look for
Because chlorine can damage your hair, it is necessary to wash it as soon as you leave the pool. Swimmer shampoos are meant to defend your hair from chlorine and its effects. Choosing the right one goes a long way in achieving that.
Shampoos leave your hair clean, healthy, hydrated, and soft. Their formulas treat the hair cuticles and enhance growth.
It is important to know the type of hair you have to choose the right products with the best ingredients. Before you purchase any product, it’s recommended to visit a specialist to help you determine the amount of chlorine-induced damage that you might have.
It doesn’t hurt to look at the ingredient list before you purchase any products too. This requires you to know your skin type so that you can avoid any allergic reactions.
Consider if the ingredients are natural or organic. Look at the base and active ones to determine what would work best for you.
This shampoo is formulated with Dead Sea Minerals to remove chlorine and saltwater from a swimmers’ hair and scalp. The shampoo is enhanced with Argan and Shea Oils to hydrate dry hair after-swim and relieve potential itchy scalps caused by pool chemicals.
It hydrates your hair and neutralises the chlorine scent. What makes this product different is that it’s SLS-free, paraben-free, Non-GMO, alcohol-free, and cruelty-free.
Hair is an accessory of beauty, and it plays a vital role in physical attractiveness to both men and women. Healthy hair can be a prestigious crown to have. However, we have to keep it at the back of our minds that it is prone to damage by several factors.
Developing healthy haircare routines can ensure that it stays rejuvenated and Free from damage!