High Heels and Training Wheels: No 'Poo vs. Chlorine



No 'Poo vs. Chlorine

Hey, guys! I have another No 'Poo post to help get you through more of those daily obstacles! We know by now that No Poo is great for you for so many reasons; however, it doesn't always make the best of friends with other things that find their way into our hair. Chlorine is a known evil to your beautiful, healthy locks but it can become even more troublesome to us No Poo users. We're still stuck in winter right now but with spring break just around the corner, Chlorine is about to start causing problems for us. So how can you enjoy those lovely pools and hot tubs and such? Well, there's a couple ways!

When I am in the pool or in a hot tub, I try to keep my hair out of the water as much as possible. Yes because it's bad for it, but usually it's because I took the time to fix my hair. Yeah, I'll admit to being a little high maintenance on occasion! Sometimes though, I just want to swim down to the bottom with reckless abandon and see how many dive sticks I can grab in one breath. (C'mon, you know you've done it too!) But I don't want my moment of carefree fun to dry out my hair. Luckily, it doesn't have to!

There are a few things you can do before, during, and after being exposed to chlorine to help your hair. As with the No Poo-friendly options for a sweaty scalp, you can choose as many or as few of these that you want to do. If you are just enjoying the occasional swim, you don't need all of these; one or two will do ya. Personally, I will usually only opt for the pre-swim soak/conditioner and a clean water rinse afterward. So if you're just enjoying the occasional cannon ball like me, that may be enough. However if you are into, say diving or competitive swimming with prolonged exposure, you will obviously benefit the most from using as many of these as you can.

Options to Fight Chlorine

  • Soak your hair with clean (chlorine-free) water immediately before swimming.
  • After soaking your hair, saturate your hair with a silicone-free conditioner and leave this in your hair until after you leave the pool. This will create somewhat of a barrier between the chlorine and your hair. 
  • Rinse very well with clean water immediately after getting out of the pool. This keeps any chlorine that might have found it's way to your hair from sitting and drying it out further.

All of the steps mentioned above are great options to use for this as well and I would use them first. You may find that you don't need anything more. However, it's safer to have a little more protection if you're in chlorinated water frequently or for longer lengths of time. The following options are additional solutions to help specifically for a more intense protection against prolonged chlorine exposure. You can use them in this order or you can pick and choose as they work or are convenient to you.
  • Use a swim cap every time you enter the water. This is your best bet to protect against the chlorine and bonus: it's the easiest solution, too!
  • Rinse with vitamin C after leaving the water. You can use vitamin C packets (such as Emergen-C) or you can crush your own chew-able vitamin C tablets out of a bottle. Use a 1 teaspoon vitamin C to 1 cup of water ratio, mixing as much as you need for the length of your hair.
  • In addition to or in place of the vitamin C rinse, rinse with plain club soda. 
  • In addition to or in place of the club soda rinse, rinse with your normal ACV mix. Instead of keeping this away from the roots as you normally would in a full wash, you want to apply this from root to tip. 
  • In addition to or in place of the ACV rinse, apply tomato paste from root to tip. There is no need to dilute this; slap it on straight out of the can. Tomato paste with less preservatives will be more effective obviously but any would be better than none. Let this sit in your hair for 20-30 minutes, then rinse. After rinsing, this should not leave any scent to your hair. In fact, this will help combat and neutralize any chlorine smells.

As I said, you can use all of these options together or you can pick which options your hair likes best. If you do opt for all of them combined, however, I suggest using them in this order. Your best bet is to start at the top of the list and work your way down to narrow down which ones are the most useful to you. This way you can come up with your own recipe and get the most out of them. As always, let me know if there's anything I missed and feel free to ask any questions you might have. Now, get going on your canon balls! :)

Check out my other No Poo posts for more answers to your most-asked questions:

Q: "Why isn't No Poo working for me?"
A: No Poo FAQ: How to Make No Poo Work for YOU!

Q: "Will vinegar make my hair stink? Can I add another scent to it?"
A: How the smell of vinegar effects your hair and what you can do about it

Q: "How can I continue my daily work outs with No Poo's strict wash schedule?"
A: Maintaining your No Poo hair on sweaty days

Q: "I dye my hair, can I still use No Poo?"
A: How I fit hair color into my No Poo routine

Q: "Are there other ways to use No Poo besides baking soda and vinegar?"
A: No Poo Part 2

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