Can I Go Swimming After I Dye My Hair (And How To Protect You 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.

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

The most frequently asked question was: Can I go swimming after I dye my hair?

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

Can I go swimming after I dye my hair?

Due to the chlorine used in swimming pools and the salt in oceans, it’s not recommended to go swimming straight after you dyed your hair. 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. It is therefore recommended to wait for 3 to 4 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.

How long do you have to wait to go swimming after dying your hair?

If you just colored your hair this afternoon and someone invited you over for a pool party, it might be smart to say no to that! It can ruin the color of your hair.

It is better to wait a minimum of three to four days before you go swimming after you dyed your hair. You should wait three to four days so that the pigments of the hair dye have more time to set in your hair.

But what happens, why do you need to wait three to four days before you can go swimming? 

This has everything to do with the chlorine that is in the pool water (assuming you would go swimming in a pool). Chlorine is a chemical that is placed in pool water to keep it clean and prevent bacteria from growing in the water.

All is well until you know that it not only kills bacteria, but it also kills your hair dye. I do not mean that literally, but chlorine oxidizes the pigment that gives your hair color.

And when the process of oxidizing 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, devastating if you just want to enjoy your beautiful 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.

Can you swim in a pool with dyed hair?

Sure you can! Is it a great thing to do? No! Just as I explained in the section above, it is better to not do it. After 3 or 4 days you’re in the clear and you can just go and enjoy your swim, but swimming in the pool or ocean before the 3 to 4 days are over is asking for problems. 

What happens to your newly found blonde hair?

Say your colored your hair and you would go swimming in a pool, what would happen to your blonde hair? 

Because of the chemical chlorine, the pool would be clean of bacteria, but your hair will be affected by it in a way that you might just not like. Your hair will turn green when you swim a lot after a hair dye. 

So unless it doesn’t bother you to have green hair, I would say to wait it out a couple of days.

I know I talked a lot about blonde hair, but what happens when you have red hair?

Simple, the same applies here only your hair would not become green, but your hair will turn to a copper-colored look. 

What to do to protect your freshly dyed hair from turning green after swimming?

Luckily there are some things that you can do to help your hair not becoming green.

Coconut oil!

To prevent your hair from turning green after you started swimming in a pool, you can use coconut oil. Coconut oil forms a thin film between your hair and the water. Does this a perfect job, no there’s always the risk of your hair turning a little green, but does it help significantly? Yes, it does. 

Just apply a couple of drops of coconut oil onto your hands and then distribute it all over your hair. Make sure you cover every inch of your hair and you should be good to go!

Wet your hair

Making your hair wet before you go into a pool is also a good thing to do. When you make your hair wet before you go into the pool, you make sure that less chlorine is absorbed into your hair. So, ultimately, less effect of the chlorine on your hair. For ocean water, the same thing applies,

You can apply both of these tips for a wide variety of hair colors.

Does chlorine affect dying your hair?

Chlorine does affect your dyed hair if you do not wait long enough for the pigments to set it your hair.

I know that I have said it multiple times already, but I really want to drive the point home. You have to wait at least 3 to 4 days before you go swimming so that the pigment can set in your hair. If you do not do that you take the risk of your hair color fading due to the oxidizing effect of your hair.

Now, there are some things that you can do to protect your hair from the chemicals in the pool and the saltwater in the ocean. Below this is a section that tells you all about it.

How do I protect my dyed hair in the pool and in the ocean?

The first two things that you can do, I already listed above. I’ll repeat them here again so that you don’t have to scroll all the way back!

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 using 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 the chemicals 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 rine all the chemicals and salt out of your 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 in a gentle way. 

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

Using a 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 damages, 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 the people that have dyed their hair blonde. When your hair turns green from swimming in the ocean or in 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 really massage it in! I know it sounds scary but it really 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? Yes, you can, but it’s not convenient. 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 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!

Joy-Lee Founder and writer of


Hi, my name is Joy-Lee and I'm the owner of As you might've noticed, I'm a true beauty lover, and made it my passion, my work and my hobby. I love sharing my thoughts and feelings on a variety of beauty aspects and want to thank you for reading!