Hooray! Summer is here again! Bring on the long days of lounging poolside with a great book! I get a good number of questions on social media and I thought, since it was timely, I would share a recent one from a group of junior lifeguards. They asked, given how often they are in and out of a chlorinated pool, what can they do to avoid dry, brittle hair? And more importantly, how can they prevent blonde hair from turning green? Such a great question, let’s see if I can’t answer that for you!
I want to be clear that completely avoiding the effects of chlorine is almost impossible unless you avoid the pool all together but there are some measures you can take. Many opt for specialty hair products made for treating “swimmers’ hair.” They are pretty effective and are sometimes, a necessary addition to your hair care routine. Since I myself am not a routine pool swimmer, I checked in with some of our loyal Natura Culina customers who happen to also be former olympic swimmers! They too struggle with how to treat their hair kindly and naturally with repeated pool use. Here is what they had to say:
“My fail safe was I washed and conditioned my hair every time I got out of the pool. Some people might think that is excessive but even if I had 2 practices a day as soon as I was out of the pool I went straight to the showers and rinsed my hair- shampooed and conditioned it. I never was one to use hairdryers and flat irons- I let my hair air dry as much as possible. I use Moroccan oil in my hair during the cold winter months to keep my hair soft .”
– Kristy Kowal, Olympic Medalist Swimmer
“I swear by Aveda Shampure…. And the Orange bottle which gets sun and chlorine out! Use that 1x week”
-Caroline Stilwell Burckle, Olympic Medalist Swimmer
“As far as hair products go, I really like Paul Mitchell products because they clean my chlorinated hair and they’re blonde hair treatment shampoo/conditioner and spray prevents my hair from turning brassy and yellow!”
-Dagny Knutson, World Champion Swimmer
As always, I wanted to throw in a word of caution. Many of the commercial products on the market have chemicals in them to strip out the chlorine and moisturize. But understandably when faced with the alternative, dry, brassy hair, it may be the best way to go. Of course, when looking for any product solution, I would be sure to review all the ingredients and do your research.
In addition to “swimmers’ hair” products, there are some natural things that you can do that can diminish the effects of chlorine. First, As a general rule, always take a shower before making your way into the pool, and I don’t just mean the public pool! Apply conditioner to your hair, not shampoo just conditioner and lightly rinse out. Our Natura Culina Hair and Scalp Oil is a great for this purpose. For your skin, gently rinse with Natura Culina’s Body Wash as they all contain sunflower oil, a naturally emollient ingredient that actually helps your skin retain moisture and is perfect for dry skin. Doing these simple steps will provide a moisture barrier between your hair and skin, and the chlorinated pool water. For our junior lifeguards in question, this might be a little trickier. One can’t pause to take a shower before rushing in to help a swimmer in need! In this case, a quick rinse every time you exit the pool is key. Followed by shampoo and conditioner at the end of the day.
We are all human and if at the end of a week of pool enjoyment you find yourself with a brassy green tint, there are always some natural options! You can rock that green hair and embrace that badge of honor that says I’m part mermaid or man! Or, Believe it or not, your kitchen pantry might have your antidote! Ketchup, tomato paste, lemon juice and apple cider vinegar will usually take the green right out! Apply one of these condiments all over your hair, let it soak in and then rinse. It might take a few washings and you may smell like dinner but should do the trick! Follow the rinse with our Natura Culina Hair and Scalp Oil and your hair will smell amazing and thank you!
Be safe, be well, and always feel free to ask me any question about your natural skin and hair care needs! You know where to find me, I’m on pretty much all the social media channels! Or send me an email!
Much Love, Lenka