May 2


How to Protect your Skin and Hair from the Adverse Effects of Chlorine

By Tarun Dosanjh

May 2, 2018

As soon as the summer starts, one of the first thing which comes to the mind is that it’s time to go take a dip in the cool water of the pool.

An ideal summer day is spending at least a couple of hours in the pool with your family.

It’s not only a great way to beat the heat and relax but also helps to keep us fit and healthy.

But what to do about the harmful effects of the chlorine in the pool water on our skin and hair?

Chlorine is a chemical  used to keep the pool water free of the harmful bacteria, which can grow in it.

Though it’s important for the hygiene of the swimming pool, chlorine can also take a toll on our skin and hair.

  • Chlorine strips off the essential oils from the skin and this leaves the skin dry and flaky.
  • It can sometimes raise the sensitivity of the skin. It can lead to irritation and even bad rashes.
  • The high content of chlorine in the pool water causes the oxidization of the metals, which further attach to the protein of the hair, making it look green .
  • It also makes the hair dry and brittle.
  • Chlorine can make the skin go weak and this can result in severe sun tanning, especially in outdoor pools.

But you don’t have to give up swimming just to avoid these adverse affects of chlorinated water.

Here are 7 tips to enjoy swimming and still save your hair and skin from unnecessary damage.

1.Rinse before getting into the pool.

A quick shower before getting into the water is usually mandatory in most of the public pools.

And no matter how much you get tempted to skip this instruction, make sure you do take a shower preferably with soap and water.

It is a very important because all the cosmetics, perspiration and other impurities on our bodies can interact with the chlorinated water and create skin problems.

Also the hair and skin absorb fewer chemicals from the water if they are already wet. Because dry skin and hair act as a sponge to absorb the chemicals from the pool.

2. Moisturize.

There are some good pre swimming lotions available in the market.

These are chlorine-neutralizing lotions, which protect the skin from the harmful effects of the chemicals in the pool water.

Put a pre swim lotion generously all over the body after the shower and before getting into the pool water.

3.Wear a water resistance sunscreen.

As fancy it may sound, but a thick layer of water resistance sunscreen definitely helps to save the skin to some extent.

It not only works against the sun damage but also acts as a barrier between the skin and the chemicals in the pool water.

Wear the sunscreen after sometime of applying the moisturizer.  Make sure the sunscreen is a Broad Spectrum one and is SPF 30 or above.

And don’t forget to reapply if you are in the pool for long .

4.Keep your swimwear clean.

Washing your swimwear with a washing powder every time after a swim is vital to the  skin health.

If it’s not washed properly then the dirt and grime can interact with the chemicals of the pool water and lead to skin infections.

5.Always wear a swim cap.

The chlorinated water of the pool leaves the hair dry and brittle. To avoid this you need to wear a swim cap.

Make sure the swimming cap is the appropriate size and is a snug fit so it doesn’t allow the water to leak in and make contact with the hair and cause damage.

6.Shower straight after the swim.

Get into the shower immediately after the swim to get rid of all the chemicals as soon as possible.

It is important to wash the skin thoroughly with soap and water to rinse off all the chemicals of the pool water.

If you are a frequent swimmer, it’s better to use an anti chlorine body wash to get rid of the residual chlorine from the pool water.

Also wash your hair properly with a moisturizing shampoo every time after a swim.

If the metals from the pool stay on the scalp for too long, they can have some really harsh effects on the hair. So it’s important to wash your hair after every swimming session.

And finally don’t forget to use a good hair conditioner to avoid dryness.


Use a moisturizer all over your body after you shower. Use a generous amount on the still damp skin as it will be well absorbed  by the skin.

Its better to use a moisturizer with vitamin C and vitamin E as it helps in neutralizing the chlorine maintaining soft healthy skin.

With a few preventative measures, you can reduce the harmful effects of chlorine of the swimming pool water.

These precautionary efforts can save your skin and hair from the chemicals and free radicals present in the swimming pool water so that you and your family can enjoy a good swim in summer without worrying about it.

Tarun Dosanjh

About the author

Tarun Dosanjh is an aesthetician & skincare coach who has been in the beauty business for the past 20 years.

She has been helping Indian women look their absolute best, using a blend of clean, organic and botanical based skin care products.

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