The Scoop on Chlorine and your Hair
Summer is upon us again and swimming will certainly be part of your fun, fitness, and health this season! I can guarantee that if you ask any teenager what they believe is the number one health risk associated with their summer pool fun, they will quickly tell you that it is how chlorine affects their hair! Minerals and oxidizers are the biggest contributors to summer hair and scalp problems. Repeated chlorine and metal exposure from the pool will cause the hair to turn green. While swimming, minerals attach to the hair proteins like small magnets creating a wall of oxidized elements. This process will surely cause damage, dryness, and discoloration to your beautiful hair. This happens even to those with darker levels of hair, and can be more apparent in certain lighting conditions. Obviously the lighter the hair color is the more visible the green cast will be.
Chlorine in swimming pool water causes various hard metals to oxidize such as copper, iron and manganese. Just as time and the elements can turn your beautiful copper pots and pans a turquoise green from the minerals oxidizing, the same action happens to your hair after swimming in a chlorinated pool. After such repeated exposure to the oxidized hard metals floating in the pool, blondes and those with white or grey hair can often take on the greenish cast. It is the metals, not the chlorine that is the shade shifter after all.
Chemical processing such as highlighting makes the hair cuticle consistently more porous and sensitized. The more porous the hair is, the easier it is for the absorption of the metals to the hair strand turning the hair green. Chlorine is a bleaching agent and will additionally lighten the hair causing substantial damage to the entire strand.
The most apparent solution would be to wear a swimming cap to the pool. However, if you are looking for a more fashion forward type of approach, you could apply a conditioner to your hair to fill your locks prior to your swim. Not only would you be sealing the cuticle and adding protection from the chlorine in the pool, but you would be treating your hair with some beneficial nutrients. This, however, may not be a possible solution if you are using a public pool as your swimming spot. It is unlikely that a public pool employee will be happy to see you show up for your dip with a head full of conditioner.
Another option to prevent your hair from turning green would be to rinse your hair immediately after getting out of the pool and in between each dip. You must be sure that you completely rinse all of the pool water from the hair immediately after you are out. Since chlorine’s affects are so harsh and damaging, it will strip the cuticle, leaving the hair not only susceptible to color change, but can cause the hair to have split ends, appear dull, weak, and fragile. Rinse completely, and as soon as you are able to, shampoo the hair with a gentle sulfate free shampoo such as the Organic Care Power Build Shampoo. This will ensure that all the residual chlorine is removed.
In order to fix hair that has gone green from the pool, you can take several approaches. The patented technology in Malibu Wellness from Organic Salon Systems offers a Swimmers After-Swim Solution. This patented, fresh-dried vitamin complex dissolves into a gel in the palms of your hand forming a lathering treatment specifically formulated for swimmers to be used in the salon, at home or at the pool after swimming to remove and prevent all the elements from pool, spa or ocean water that can otherwise damage and discolor your hair. It immediately removes chlorine and mineral build-up from your swimmer hair helping to restore the health and wellness to both your hair and scalp. If the chlorine is not removed from it can dry the hair out making it extremely brittle. Don’t let chlorine wreak havoc on your hair this summer! Protect and treat your hair with Organic Salon Systems Swimmers Wellness Solutions.