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How to protect & prevent your hair from chlorine damage

Whether you’re a regular swimmer or enjoy a rare dip in the pool while on vacation, it pays to be aware of the damage chlorine can do to your hair. Chlorine is a chemical, and exposing your hair to it can cause issues, from brittle, dehydrated strands to faded color. But it’s not all bad news. Below are some simple steps you can follow to help protect your hair against chlorine damage.

Does chlorine cause damage to hair?

In short, yes it does. It goes without saying that chlorine is a vital chemical in swimming pools, working to kill bacteria in the water. However, it can also strip the natural oils in your hair and on your scalp, causing dry, brittle strands, split ends, and discoloration – both in dyed and natural hair.

How to prevent chlorine damage to hair

Don’t let the fear of potential chlorine damage stop you from going swimming. Here are a few clever tips and tricks you can incorporate into your pre-and-post pool routine to minimize it:

  • Rinse before and after: Hair is highly absorbent, so thoroughly rinsing it before you dive head first into the deep end will stop it from absorbing as much chlorinated water. It will still take some on, which is why rinsing it thoroughly with clean water as soon as you get out will also help prevent damage from occurring.
  • Wear a swim cap: They might not always be the coolest fashion accessory, but swim caps are great for keeping your hair out of your face and – when worn properly – preventing any chlorine from soaking into your hair. Wet your hair first (the cap will slide on easier), make sure all your strands are tucked inside, and you’ve got yourself a one-stop chlorine barrier.
  • Tie your hair up: No into swim caps? Or perhaps your hair’s too long to fit underneath one? Style it into a high ponytail or bun instead to minimize the amount of contact it has with the chlorine.
  • Brush your hair gently: Hair that’s been in contact with chlorine for a long period of time will be weaker and more prone to breakage, so always brush it through gently using a detangling spray, like Dove Hair Therapy 7-in-1 Miracle Mist.

The best hair treatment for chlorine damage

Alongside the above tips and tricks, it’s also worth using the right hair care to inject moisture and hydration back into your post-swim locks. Dove Ultra Care Coconut & Hydration Shampoo and Conditioner not only smells amazing (hello, lime and coconut scent) but it’s also incredibly nourishing. It’s infused with our Nutritive Serum to lock in essential moisture, plus the lightweight formula won’t weigh locks down. Your scalp, as well as your strands, can suffer from chlorine damage, so invest in a leave-in product like Dove Hair Therapy Dry Scalp Care Leave-On Treatment which is infused with nourishing Vitamin B3. When used as part of a 3-step system it leaves both scalp and strands feeling hydrated and healthy from root to tip.

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