Swimming is a great exercise because it offers a full body workout. It can be performed either in closed water bodies like a pool or in open like sea, lake, river, pond etc. Whatever medium you choose for swimming, you should keep some crucial points in mind before diving into the water. This is important because the water of pool or sea has components which can make your hair dry and damaged. One important component is chlorine which is extremely harmful to hair shaft because it can strip off the natural oil from the scalp. This can result in split ends, breakage, weak and frizzy hair.
Here are some simple tips which reduce the hair damage after swimming:
Shower before getting into the water
Hair is a porous structure and readily absorbs water, therefore, showering before swimming will reduce the damage too much extent as the chlorine water wouldn’t get a chance to get into the pores of hair as it is already occupied. If you cannot shower before swimming then you must use a conditioner before hitting the pool.
Use an oil treatment
Massaging your hair and scalp with an oil can also help in reducing hair damage. But you must cover your head before diving into the water as exposure of hair to sunlight can reduce the effect of oil. You can use heavy oils such as Shea butter, castor oil, mineral oils which takes time to wash off when you are swimming in water without a head cover.
Cover your hair
You can protect your hair by wearing a hair cover known as swim cap. It minimizes the contact between your hair and chlorinated or salt water as well as it prevents the entry of water into your ears. You should wet your hair or apply oil even if you are wearing a swim cap.
Hair care after swimming
You must rinse your hair for at least five minutes under running water to remove most of the chlorine. It also prevents any chemical residue build up which can cause itching or irritation of the scalp. Wash your hair with a mild shampoo thoroughly to remove the traces of chlorine or any metal residue.
The remedy for hair damage
Damage control is an important factor in hair care and you can use a mild shampoo after swimming for washing. You can use an apple cider vinegar rinse for a natural homemade quick fix for damaged hair. It will remove chlorine deposits, remove dead skin cells, unclogs hair follicles and any product buildup. You should use a deep conditioner after hair wash to replenish any lost moisture.
Besides these important tips, cleanliness of pool also plays an important role because there are high chances of infection in case of the poorly maintained pool. Well maintained pools have generally pale blue colored water and scent of chlorine is not so strong but in case of badly maintained pool, you can find green or yellow colored water and chlorine smell dominates in the pool and is breeding ground of germs.