Can I Go Swimming after I Dye My Hair? Don’t Go for a Swim!

Can you go swimming in a swimming pool or ocean when you just colored your hair

What was supposed to be a huge party, unfortunately, ended in a fiasco. That’s how people who have just colored their hair often recognize a pool party.

A lot of people make the mistake of dyeing their hair just before a nice party! Normally not such a point of course, but it is when you go to a swimming party, or when you go to the sea. that the fiasco begins.

Your just dyed hair is not ready for chlorine and salt. Chlorine and salt cause your newly dyed hair color to fade. So it’s only logical that I got questions from readers about how you can solve this.

The most frequently asked question was if you could go swimming after you dyed your hair.

A good question of course and below I answer! Curious if you can go to the pool party tonight with your new look!

Can you go swimming after you dye your hair?

You can not go swimming after dyeing your hair because: Chlorine oxidizes your hair pigment that gives your hair color and salt can damage and open the cuticle, allowing the saltwater to penetrate the hair shaft and pull the color out. Wait a minimum of between three and four days before you dive into the pool or ocean with your newly dyed hair so that the hair pigments have more time to set in your hair.

hair dye and the effects on the health of your hair

before you dye your hair (whether you’re going to a swimming pool after or not), you have to consider the effects that it can have on the health of your hair. When you dye your hair, you essentially apply chemicals to your hair and this can potentially cause damage to your hair. This is because dyeing your hair comes down to breaking down the natural pigments in your hair and replacing them. this can make your hair feel dry and brittle.

Besides the fact that hair dye can potentially damage your hair, it can also be damaging physically. When dyeing your hair some pulling and tugging is going on which can lead to breakage of the hair. When you leave hair dye in for longer than is recommended, it’ll cause your hair to become dry, brittle, and prone to breakage.

Last but not least, the chemicals in the hair dye are skin sensitizers and can cause various issues on your skin like dermatitis or rashes

Therefore the following is recommended:

  • Use a good quality hair dye. Better go for something good than something cheap.
  • Read up on how to apply hair dye correctly
  • Follow the instruction for application to the letter
  • Know whether or not you’re allergic to some kinds of chemicals before applying the hair dye.

Swimming and its effects on hair health

Swimming in swimming pools or the sea can do serious damage to your hair when you do it often. This is because of the chlorine and the salt in the water. Even though they are both damaging, they both damage your hair differently.

Swim in swimming pools

The swimming pool water is often overflowing with chlorine. this is because chlorine is used (and essential) to kill bacteria in the water.

So, even though chlorine protects you from a lot of bacteria, it doesn’t protect your hair. Chlorine strips your hair of the natural oils (sebum) your body produces to protect your hair. this in turn can cause your hair do become dry, brittle and even crack and split.

Swimming in saltwater

Swimming in a salt sea is a little bit different when compared to swimming in a swimming pool in terms of hair health.

Saltwater is damaging to your hair but in a little different way. Saltwater damages your hair because the salt dries out your hair (and scalp). It strips your hair of all its water, leaving it rough and dehydrated.

De dehydration and roughness of your hair can lead to split ends, breakage, and even dandruff on your scalp.

Factors to consider when deciding whether to go for a swim after dyeing your hair

Below you’ll find the factors that you need to take into account when you want to decide whether or not it is a good idea to go swimming after you dyed your hair. Keep in mind that making the wrong decision can be detrimental to your hair.

#1 – The waiting time after dyeing your hair

If you’ve just colored your hair a couple of hours ago, it isn’t the right move to go swimming. The pigments in your hair dye haven’t had enough time to set in your hair and make it safe to swim.

Ideally you should wait three to four days before your take a plunge in a swimming pool or the ocean.

What happens when you don’t wait the appropriate time?

As said earlier, both chlorine and salt water can put the health of your hair in danger. Besides the fact that your hair can become dry and brittle, it will also start the oxidation process in the pigments that gives your hair the color it now has.

And when the process oxidation process starts, the color in your hair will fade. For example: if you colored your hair blonde, and you would go swimming right after, your hair will become green. Great for Halloween, but devastating if you just want to enjoy your newly dyed hair.

What about swimming in the ocean after you dyed your hair?

Great question! Just like chlorine, ocean water does also ruins your hair color. This is because the saltwater of the ocean in combination with ultraviolet rays will end up ruining your hair. So, wait a couple of days before you do this.

You can however pre-soak your hair in clean water before you go into the ocean. This trick helps because after you’ve done that, your hair will absorb less chlorine (for a pool) or saltwater (ocean). You can also rinse your hair after you’ve come out of the ocean. This is not helpful if you just dyed your hair this afternoon because then your hair just isn’t ready for a swim… But this is a tip so that you can enjoy your colored hair longer.

#2 – the type and condition of the hair

It doesn’t matter whether you have straight, wavy, curly, or coily hair. All hair types are prone to become dry, brittle, and breakage when swimming in both chlorinated or salt water.

There is however one hair type where chlorine is especially harsh on and that’s thick curly hair. That’s why it is important (for all hair types) to take good care of your hair.

Besides the type of hair, the condition of your hair also plays a role in the decision process of whether or not to go swimming.

now, when you have healthy hair that’s been dyed, it is less of an issue to go swimming than when you already have poor hair health.

That isn’t to say that healthy hair isn’t prone to the detrimental effects I described earlier, because it is… But when you have poor hair health (split ends, dull hair, dry and brittle, no natural volume, etc…) you can imagine it being even worse when you go swimming.

So, when you have healthy hair, you should keep your hair in a healthy condition and you can go swimming after a couple of days.

When you don’t have healthy hair, you should first get your hair healthy, then dye your hair and then you can go swimming after waiting the appropriate time.

#3 – the hair products that have been used

The hair products that are used on your hair are also a factor you have to keep in mind. This is because some hair products are great at protecting your hair from the chlorine (or salt) in the water. More on this in a later section.

How do you protect your dyed hair in the swimming pool and the ocean?

To protect your freshly dyed hair from chlorine, saltwater, and the sun, you can do a couple of things. The first thing that you can do is use coconut oil.

Use coconut oil

Rub a couple of drops of coconut oil on your hands and then distribute it in your hair. Leave no inch unturned! Coconut oil forms a film between your hair and the water so that chlorine or salt can not penetrate the hair.

This can be a bit of a sticky solution, but everything is better than your hair fading because you took no precautions. 

Wet your hair with water

As I said earlier, you can just rinse your hair with water before you go to the pool or the ocean. Making your hair already wet can help because then your hair cannot absorb as much chlorine or salt and therefore it protects your hair from touching your preciously designed hairstyle.

It is also handy to rinse your hair after you’ve gotten out of the pool or ocean to rinse all the chemicals and salt out of your hair.

Get a conditioner made for swimmers

When you don’t want to use a natural oil like coconut oil to protect your hair, some products are specially made for protecting the hair of frequent swimmers (and it certainly can help your.

Before you make a plunge in the water, use a hydrating conditioner (a conditioner that contains dimethicone for example) to put an extra layer between your hair and the chlorinated water.

When you’re finished you should wash your hair with shampoo, get a deep conditioning mask (or leave-in conditioner) in your hair to re-hydrate your hair and prevent further damage.

Make use of a swimming cap

I know it sounds silly, but it works. Now the above methods are a great temporary thing, but it won’t last if you’re going for a long swim or long day at the pool or beach.

If you want to be certain that your hair is as far aways from chlorinated water as possible, you can use a swimming cap.

A silicone swimming cap that covers all your hair will protect your hair the best from the water. They even make large swimming caps for people with long and voluminous hair.

Sunscreen for your hair

I know this sounds silly to you! It did to me the first time I heard it, but it really is true. You can spray sunscreen on your hair that contains filters that block UVA and UVB rays. This helps because these rays can affect the color of your hair. But this is not the only thing. Using sunscreen in your also reduces the effects chlorine has on your hair.

Use a Cleanser

The above solutions are all things that you can do without a “special product”, but there are lots of products on the market that are designed to remove chlorine and salt from your hair. 

A good product to use is the Aveda Cleanser. This is a product that is safe for your colored hair.

This Alveda cleanser is a product with a chelator derived from corn. This product removes chlorine, salt, and product residues that are in the hair. This is done gently. 

The product also contains tamanu oil and organic coconut oil. These oils help maintain the moisture balance in your hair. It also contains green tea, organic sunflower oil, and vitamin E to keep hair healthy. 

A top product for people who want to protect their dyed hair against chlorine and salt. Great for on the beach or by the pool!

Use a shampoo for colored hair and one that is without sulfates

Using shampoo for colored hair helps to restore the color while giving back the shine that fades when chlorine is at play.

Using shampoo for colored hair also helps to hydrate the hair and giving it back some of its moisture. 

If you do this in combination with a deep hair mask treatment for extreme hair damage, you’re good to go!

If you take these tips into account I know for sure that you can enjoy full days on the beach and at a pool party. Have fun!

What to do if your hair has turned green after swimming in the pool or the ocean?

This thing is specially designed for people that have dyed their hair blonde. When your hair turns green from swimming in the ocean or the pool, you need to do something about it. 

Here is what you should do:

Mix 5 tablespoons of baking soda with water. Mix it with just enough water so that a thick paste is created. Once you have done this I want you to put it on your hair and massage it in! I know it sounds scary but it works.

Let it sit for about 5 minutes and then rinse it out nicely. 

Then wash your hair with a shampoo that is designed for colored hair and apply a hair mask just as I explained below.

If you do this 2 to 3 times a week you are going to see that the green is neutralized.

Final thoughts

So can you swim right after you dyed your hair? No, you shouldn’t swim right after your dyed your hair. The chlorine in a lot of pool water causes it to affect the pigment of your hair if it hasn’t been completely absorbed yet. 

This causes your hair to turn green (if you dyed it blonde) if you don’t do anything about it. Chlorine does this with the chemicals in your hair.

Also swimming in the sea just after you’ve dyed your hair is not a smart thing to do. In combination with the sun’s rays, the salt in the water causes the new color in your hair to fade.

Luckily you can counter this and you’ve read about that too. There is coconut oil, wash your hair with water before entering the pool and you can also use a cleanser.

If you use the tips and information in this article you will notice that you can enjoy your dyed hair much longer and that you don’t have any stress about it anymore. Optimal to enjoy a full day at the swimming pool or a lovely long day at the beach!

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