Swimming is a pleasurable activity. It is leisurely and yet you indulge in rigorous exercise. Unless all you are doing is floating, swimming is one of the best workouts you can gift yourself. The activity is restricted to summers for most people living in the north but heated pools are no longer an unaffordable luxury. For all the benefits and joys of swimming, there is a serious downside. Swimming is not good for your skin and hair. If you were swimming in a perennial or even a seasonal river, a freshwater lake or in the ocean, you would avoid the dreaded chlorine that is unavoidable in both indoor and outdoor pools.
Chlorine is a necessary evil. It has to be used so the pool does not become a thriving habitat of bacteria. When your skin and hair get exposed to this chlorine, you would have a plethora of problems. Modern pools don’t just use chlorine but many other agents for a myriad of purposes. They too have their share of side effects. Chlorine also corrodes metals in pipes and they get mixed in the pool water. Prolonged exposure to these metals would also have adverse effects on your skin and hair.
Adverse Effects Of Swimming On Skin And Hair
Your hair may get slightly or substantially discolored. Most people have dry and brittle hair that feels like straw and is vulnerable to breakage. Frizzy hair, lack of luster and weakened follicles are common. Many people experience an itchy dry scalp. The cuticles get damaged if you swim in a chlorinated pool every day. The human skin will turn dry and flaky upon exposure to chlorine. Regular swimmers often find shreds of skin on their beds after waking up in the morning. Skin burn, itchiness, rashes, acne, wrinkles or fine lines and allergies are also common. People who have sensitive skin are more vulnerable.
Best Practices of Swimming
You should try to avoid indoor pools. Outdoor pools are exposed to sunlight. The ultraviolet rays of the sun can neutralize many free radicals that would otherwise thrive in a shaded or indoor pool. Many gases resulting from the various chemicals used in pool water get to escape in outdoor pools.
You should always shower before and after a swim. You may not use soap, body wash, face wash or shampoo every time you shower. Using clean running water to rinse the skin and hair can be sufficient in reducing the adverse impacts of exposure to chlorine. You can also get other pollutants off your skin and hair.
You should put on a swim cap and eyewear. You should use hair oil and condition before you dive into the pool. Conditioners, natural or organic hair oils and sunscreens create a protective layer on your skin and hair. They will reduce the exposure to chlorine and other chemicals. Always have a skin lotion handy if you are sensitive to any specific chemical or just chlorinated water in general.
You can use apple cider vinegar immediately after a swim to cleanse your skin. Keep your regular moisturizer handy so you can apply it whenever you feel dryness in your skin. Avoid using dryers as they tend to cause more damage to your hair. Always pat dry. It is important that you pat your whole body with a dry clean towel or bathrobe. Do not let the pool water sit on your skin, even if you have taken a quick shower.
Skincare Products For After Swimming
You must choose skincare products depending on your skin type, gender, age and the problems you are experiencing.
- You can use Bottega Organica Body Oil for swimmers. The product is made of extracts of carrots, grape leaves and orange peel among other ingredients.
- L’Oréal Kids Tangle Tamer is great for the little ones.
- David Mallett's L'Hydratation Masks can be of great help for rejuvenation and to limit the side effects on your skin.
- Kiehl’s Olive Fruit Oil is an amazing condition you can try.
- The Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt from Christophe Robin is an effective and safe product.
- You can also pick Jurlique's Nutri-Define Superior Retexturising Facial Serum, especially if you are in a hot and humid region.