Best Hair and Skin Care Tips for Swimmers by a Dermatologist

Best Hair and Skin Care Tips for Swimmers by a Dermatologist

Jumping into the pool and doing a few laps benefits the cardiovascular system. Swimming is a fantastic exercise that takes people away from the stresses of everyday life. When swimmers leave the swimming pool, they feel great and energetic. But, they leave the pool with the distinct odour of chlorine. Chlorine dehydrates the skin and makes it more prone to infection. If one already has dry skin or atopic dermatitis, the skin is more likely to be affected by eczema, shares the best dermatologist in Bangalore, Dr. Rasya Dixit.

Swimming pools have chlorinated water to protect swimmers from microbial infections caused by dirty water. However, the amount of chlorine added to swimming pools can harm swimmers' skin and hair. Prolonged or overexposure to chlorinated water can make swimmers' skin and hair very dry and damaged.

If one dips in the chlorinated water of the pool or swims under the water's surface, the hair can get wet and then become dry, frizzy, and damaged. Some people experience split ends, brittle hair, straw-like hair, and green hair after coming out of the pool. Therefore, chlorine water in pools can make skin and hair look prematurely aged.

How to protect your skin and hair while swimming?

Whether one swims to compete in the Olympics or simply for fun, dealing with the chlorinated water is sure to come. Having chlorine smell from the body and dry, damaged skin and hair does not have to be the case for anyone enjoying swimming in pool water. With a few basic precautions to keep hair and skin healthy in and out of the water, it is possible to enjoy pool water without worrying about skin and hair.

If an individual is experiencing hair loss due to chlorine water, it is highly recommended that a dermatologist treat it before it is too late. But before looking for treatment, it is important to understand how to protect the skin and hair from the effects of chlorine.

Taking Care of Swimmer Skin and Hair

Read on to learn the swimmer's guidelines for protecting their skin and hair before entering or leaving chlorinated water by Dr. Rasya Dixit, the best skin doctor in Bangalore:

  • Take a complete shower.

Hair is as absorbent as a sponge. So, while it's dry, it absorbs any liquid around it, which means that if you swim, your hair will fill up with chlorinated water. This can remove the natural oils that cover and protect the hair, making it dry and brittle. One of the most effective ways to make the hair less absorbent is to rinse it with clean water for a few minutes before entering the pool.

The same goes for the skin. By showering before entering the pool, the pool chemicals will take longer to penetrate the skin and cause damage.

  • Create a protective barrier.

Apply a leave-in conditioner or organic oils like coconut, avocado, or olive oil before swimming. These oils help moisturise the scalp and hair while forming a barrier that prevents chlorine from penetrating the follicles.

Again, the same is true for the skin; providing another layer of protection is especially helpful for individuals with sensitive skin diseases like eczema, but it is also a good idea for any swimmer.

After washing and drying the skin, apply a small moisturiser or barrier cream to the exposed surfaces. Then, apply water-resistant sunscreen with a high SPF to all exposed areas of the skin and even apply SPF-containing lip balm.

  • Wear a swimming cap.

If serious about swimming and hair health, avoid chlorinated water as much as possible. Swim caps can help keep hair from getting wet, preventing chemicals from reaching the beautiful hair strands. Invest in a high-quality waterproof cap that covers all of the hair. Braiding or tying up the hair is also smart because keeping hair beneath the cap will be easier.

  • Rinse again.

If chlorinated water gets into the hair and is not thoroughly washed out, it can remain in it all day, causing hair to dry. When getting out of the water, carefully cleanse the hair with a relatively small amount of shampoo and conditioner. It will help remove the chemicals and rehydrate the hair. Moreover, immediately rinse the body with fresh water to remove any chlorine from the skin.

  • Remember to rehydrate the body.

Swimming, like any other physical activity, can dehydrate the body. Drinking water before and after swimming will keep the hair, skin, and the rest of the body hydrated, both inside and out.

  • Apply a nourishing hair mask.

Hair masks are another convenient way to nourish hair. A deep-soaked mask can add intense hydration to lifeless and dehydrated hair. If possible, use a hair mask containing nourishing oil and keratin. After thoroughly applying the mask to the hair, wrap it in a bun at the top to keep it from getting damp. If the hair becomes wet in the pool, shampoo it later or rinse it in the shower. When hair is adequately primed, it is prepared to withstand the damaging effects of chlorine and other chemicals.  You can get more details from the best dermatologist in Bangalore, Dr Rasya Dixit.

  • Do not neglect the scalp skin.

Like hair, the scalp becomes dry when exposed to pool water. If you have an itchy scalp, apply an effective antimicrobial toner. Apply it after washing and gently towel-drying the wet hair. Consulting a dermatologist is recommended for using a quality scalp tonic. For a more intensive hair treatment, apply a relaxing scalp mask or aloe vera gel.

  • Post-swimming skincare routine

A post-swimming skincare routine is essential for keeping the skin radiant and damage-free. Dermatologists recommend cleansing the skin once an individual gets out of the pool. The longer the chlorine lingers on the skin, the more harm it causes to the skin pores. To remove pool chemicals from the skin and restore the skin's pH balance, use a light to gentle moisturising cleanser or body wash. If an individual wants to continue enjoying a pleasant day in the sun and swimming in the pool, apply UV protection and moisturiser.

Even after following these steps, if you cannot achieve healthy skin and hair health, consult with the best skin specialist, Dr. Rasya Dixit, at her clinic. You can also watch this video by her on skin and hair care tips for swimmers -