Swimming, Hair Care and Hygiene

I have very long hair about which I am inordinately vain.

I am a swimmer.

I color my hair.

Now common wisdom would say my hair is so fried I’d have to cut it off. Or, that I must spend a million dollars on the special shampoos and conditioners. I don’t. That two dollar a bottle stuff works just fine.

Matter of fact, the one single thing I do to ensure that swimming doesn’t ruin my hair doesn’t really cost much in the way of money at all. You see, I do what they tell you and shower before I get into the pool, completely saturating my (rather porous) hair. This means that the water that has more of a chemical saturation can’t penetrate my hair as easily.

As a side note, I know a lot of people don’t shower before they get in the pool. It’s gross. They’re often the same people who complain about the “chlorine smell” or worse, think a swim can substitute for a bath. Well that smell isn’t actually chlorine. It’s a by-product of the filth the chlorine is breaking down, and it means you’re getting the pool nastier than the chemicals can keep up with. Yes, yes, the pool manager does test the water every hour or two and adjusts the chemicals going into the water to compensate for this. At least, they do in well-maintained pools. Even so, shower before you get in the damn pool. It helps reduce how much needs to be dumped into the water.

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