BY LUSETA BEAUTY
Summer has arrived, and that means that your schedule of activities has probably filled up with things like outdoor activities and time in the local pool. However, chlorine can be particularly damaging to natural or colored hair. Taking care of your hair while swimming requires a little bit of extra care before, during, and after. It may take more time, but it will save you a lot of headache later on when you don’t have to make extra visits to the salon just to mend it.
DOES THE TYPE OF POOL MATTER?
As you can imagine, a chlorine pool is going to be a lot more damaging to your hair than a saltwater pool (or swimming in the ocean). Salt from the ocean and saltwater pools can be drying, but less so than chlorine. The chemicals in chlorine can be especially drying and unforgiving to natural hair, and if your hair has been color treated on top of that? That’s a whole new level of care you’re going to have to prepare to deal with.
If you’re swimming in a chlorine pool it would be a wise idea to make sure that it’s at least a well-maintained chlorine pool. Properly maintained chlorine pools will be light blue in color and the chlorine smell will be fairly faint. A chlorine pool that has not been properly maintained will be a darker teal to greenish blue and reek of chlorine. Not only is this unsanitary, but it could mean that you’re being exposed to more chlorine than you need to be.
START BY WETTING YOUR HAIR
Your hair is at its most porous when it’s wet, but once it’s wet it will take awhile to absorb the chemicals or salt from a body of water. Try getting your hair thoroughly wet at least 15 minutes before you get in the pool or jump in the ocean to help keep your hair from absorbing anything it shouldn’t. Once your hair is wet with fresh water, it will take longer for pool or ocean water to do any damage.
USE A PROTECTIVE OIL
Applying a protective layer of oil to your hair before jumping in the pool will make it harder for chlorine or salt water to be absorbed. Coconut oil is one of the best types of oil to apply to your hair because it will nourish while protecting it. We recommend the Coconut Oil Serum from Luseta Beauty as a way of protecting your hair from the pool. Apply a generous amount to your hair after you’ve wet it, but before swimming, to keep it from absorbing any chemicals or salt.
PREVENT TANGLING WITH A PROTECTIVE STYLE
Wearing your hair down or in a ponytail may cause it to get tangled while you swim. To avoid dealing with breakage later on from detangling your hair, style it in a way that will prevent it altogether. Try braiding your hair or pulling it back to prevent unwanted breakage caused by tangling during swimming.
BEWARE OF SWIM CAPS
While your first instinct may be to slap on a latex or silicone swim cap before heading into the pool, that may actually do more harm than good. Swim caps often tug at the hair too tightly and can cause unwanted breakage, especially near your edges. If you absolutely must use a swim cap, or simply prefer applying a swim cap, make sure it doesn’t tug too tightly on your edges and don’t force your hair into it if it hurts.
USE A CONDITIONER OR HAIR MASK
After you’ve finished swimming, be sure to wash all of the chlorine from your hair with a clarifying shampoo that will remove any residue leftover even after you rinse. We recommend the Apple Cider Vinegar Shampoo to neutralize any of this residue and stimulate blood circulation. After shampooing, apply a nourishing hair mask, such as this Argan Oil Hair Mask for a couple of minutes to restore moisture and hydration to your post-swim hair.
COMB WITH A WIDE TOOTHED COMB
In case you still see any tangling, carefully comb through your hair with a wide toothed comb after you’ve rinsed out the conditioning hair mask. This will gently remove any tangles without causing breakage and make your hair easier to maintain once it’s been dried. Avoid brushing your hair while it’s wet as your hair is most vulnerable to breakage while wet. Carefully using a wide-toothed comb will help it brush out better, though.
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