Does Swimming Pool Water Damage Hair?

You enjoy swimming, and you probably heard that swimming with your hair could damage it? You are probably here to confirm how true this is.

I feel like this question falls more towards female swimmers than male swimmers. Either way, the answer you need is right here. Let us get right into it.

Does Swimming Pool Water Damage Hair

Is Swimming Pool Water Bad For Hair?

So, in most swimming pools, Chlorine can be found in them. Chlorine is known to be bad for the human skin and eyes. Chlorine dries things up after a while. 

Swimming pools can have just a trace concentration of Chlorine, which is healthy. The trace concentration can still damage or affect your hair even with that.

Some people think that Chlorine might make you lose your hair, but this is not true. The research studied 67 professional swimmers’ hair to 54 people who spend much less time in the swimming pool. These swimmers were exposed to Chlorine made their hair coarse or dry, but there was no hair loss. 

Prolonged exposure to Chlorine might cause your scalp to irritate, dry or flaky. Your hair can get thinned. A chlorinated swimming pool has more effect on your hair than the usual swimming pool.

Also, Chlorine is not capable of changing your hair color, but getting exposed to Chlorine more, you might get a green kind of tint on your hair. This is due to the metals that got oxidized in the water.


Effects of Chlorine on your Hair

The essence of having Chlorine in a swimming pool is to kill off bacteria. Still, if care is not taken, Chlorine is dangerous, especially to people who use the swimming pool frequently and consistently. Here are the things Chlorine is capable of doing to your hair:

  • It removes the natural oil known as sebum that protects your hair.
  • Irritation of skin and scalp
  • Cracking and splitting of hair.
  • It weakens your hair.
  • It changes your hair’s natural color.

If you are the kind of swimmer who only swims once in a while, you will barely see this effect on your hair because of the frequency you go to the swimming pool.

Some hair types are more prone to Chlorine changing their hair color. These kinds of hair are thin or fine, color-treated, bleached, chemically treated, dry, etc. You must know how to care for your hair against the effects of Chlorine.


How To Care For Your Hair Against the Effect of Chlorine.

We have established that Chlorine affects your hair, which means there is a need to be careful. We have tips that can help you through your swimming journey against the effect of Chlorine.

  • Wash and rinse your hair before you swim and after you swim

This instruction is a common one, especially before you go swimming. This is to clean the body dirt and oil before entering the swimming pool.

Getting your hair in the water (one without Chlorine) before swimming makes hair strands take in the water. This limits the amount of Chlorine that your hair can soak in after taking in water.

Also, it is logical that you rinse after you are done swimming to get the Chlorine. You can also make use of clarifying shampoo for a better clean.

  • Apply some oils to your hair

As I said earlier if you visit the swimming pool frequently, it is more likely for your hair to be affected by Chlorine. You can use a leave-in chlorine protectant on your hair to avoid this.

You can also make use of some natural oils. Natural oils like coconut oil, olive oil, jojoba, etc. They are very important in providing an extra layer that protects you from Chlorine. It stops Chlorine from soaking into your hair strands. 

You can also add a leave-in conditioner.

  • You can make use of swim spray.

You can use a swim spray, regardless of your hair type. Using a swim spray on your hair helps stop Chlorine from soaking into your hair strands.

  • Make use of a gentle shampoo.

Using a gentle shampoo, free of sulfate, plus conditioner is recommended after a swimming session. This also works for any hair type, clearing off any chlorine that might still be attached to your hair.

  • Use a swim cap or put your long hair in a ponytail

A regular swimmer should have a swim cap, especially for a practice session. The cap can help protect your hair from Chlorine. Chlorine won’t be able to reach your hair at all. 

You should know that your hair should all be inside the swim cap. That is how you can protect it. Wear your swim cap with your hair wet, making it easier. You can get your hair wet with non-chlorinated water before wearing your swim cap. Also, make sure to keep extra swim caps in case one is torn.

If your hair is long and cannot be contained in a swim cap, you can make your hair into a ponytail, tight bun, or braid. You can be sure that this will reduce how much Chlorine can reach your hair. 

  • Don’t joke with a post-swimming hair care routine.

One can say the most important time to stop the effect of Chlorine on one’s hair as a swimmer is after a swimming session. Taking a bath and a proper hair care routine after swimming removes Chlorine that might still be in the hair, stopping its effect on the hair.

I guess that you have a strict routine you follow after swimming. In addition to this, I want to recommend these tips in helping to care for your hair after swimming.

  • Using neat water, make sure to rinse your hair well. It would help if you used a clarifying shampoo and a leave-in conditioner.
  • Allow your hair to dry while you change dress. Make sure not to use a dryer. If you need your hair to dry more, after allowing your hair to dry in the air, use a microfiber towel gently on your hair.
  • Then you can brush your hair gently using a detangling brush specifically made for wet hair.


Final Thoughts

I’m sure you have your questions answered now, and I  hope you are now more aware of how to navigate the issue of not allowing Chlorine to affect your hair.

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