How to look after your hair and skin – by Jack Bridge

Most people will be swimming in a pool that contains chlorine, a chemical in the water that helps to keep bacteria and germs at bay. However, the same chlorine that kills bacteria can have a negative impact on our hair and skin by stripping away protective natural oils.

You might start to notice dry skin or flakiness, or even rashes caused by a change in the pH balance. Your scalp might become itchy, your hair frizzy, you might notice more breakage, or excessive oil production may cause it to get greasy.

None of this is much fun, but there are a few ways you can minimise the damage to your skin and hair.

  • Make sure you shower before having a swim, in order to both protect your skin and hair. Your hair and skin are less likely to absorb water from the pool once they’re already wet.
  • Wear a silicone swim cap. If you get one that fits right and is good quality, it will keep your hair relatively dry and minimise chlorine damage.
  • Have a shower after swimming, to wash away any chlorine and chemicals. Shower as soon as you get out of the pool – don’t wait until you get home. The quicker that your rinse away the chlorine, the better.
  • Use a shampoo specially made for swimming, as this will contain the right ingredients to protect your body. There are lots of different chlorine-neutralising soap products formulated specifically for swimmers, so try a few and find one that works for you.
  • Use a good body lotion to replenish your skin and keep it hydrated. Apply it regularly to ensure that your skin stays healthy. Condition your hair too, using a deep conditioner after shampooing, and leave in conditioners throughout the day.
  • Keep sipping on water while you swim. This helps to ensure that your skin does not get dehydrated and doesn’t absorb so much pool water.

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