So, I started swimming lessons, and I learned to float (yay!!!) before I immediately forgot and inhaled water. That hurts like a bitch by the way, but that won’t stop me! I was a bit worried because I heard that chlorine can dry your hair out to the point where it starts breaking (especially since my hair is naturally dry), but quite honestly, I didn’t want that to be the reason that I never learn how to swim. I’d rather be bald and equipped with a survival skill than look cute drowning.
Essentially, I’d looked up tips on how to protect your hair against chlorine on websites such as Curly Nikki, Natural Hair Rules, and BGLH. They all essentially stated that I should wet my hair first in order to prevent more chlorine from getting into my strands, put conditioner (I used the Shea Moisture Raw Shea Butter Restorative Conditioner, which I love!) in it, and coconut oil to prevent breakage. So I did that. I’d also unraveled all of my twist and put them into two braids since I’d already decided to make Wednesday my wash day. I further made sure to cover my hair with a swim cap from Speedo, which kind of gave me a headache, but that’s just life.
One and a half hours, several nosefuls of water, and three headaches later, I was done with my lesson and went to wash myself off in the showers. I took my swim cap off and there was hella water. Less than what there would be if I’d swam without the cap, but more than I expected. I was a bit disappointed, but I also made sure to prepare myself for that. I rinsed my hair and my body off, stretched my hair (I think some parts are at or past bsl, whoop whoop!), put them back into two braids and went home.
The first thing I did when I went home was part my hair into six different sections, twist them, and then hop into the shower. I used the Shea Moisture African Water Mint Shampoo, which is amazing. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to use it to remove chlorine, but that shampoo is the bomb! It’s tingly to the point where it cools my entire body and it doesn’t leave my hair feeling stripped and dry.
I then deep conditioned my hair for about an hour (using heat) with the Shea Moisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil Strengthen, Grow, and Restore Treatment Masque, which I recently started to use too. I like the scent (kind of like vanilla) and my hair feels a lot more moisturized. I’m going to address this right now, the reason that I’m using so many Shea Moisture products is that I love them. Also, they were buy one get one free at Walgreens, so I might have gone on a spending spree. I think it’s now buy one get one 50% off, but I’m happy that I already have my haul for the next couple of months. After all of that, using my previously sectioned hair, I applied my Jane Carter Solution Revitalizing Leave-in Conditioner, then my good ol’ coconut oil, and topped that with the Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie. All and all, my hair still feels soft, and I make sure to spritz my hair daily or every other day or so. I might switch out the mint shampoo for something else designed for swimmers, but we’ll see what happens.
So, ladies (and gents, and those who fall elsewhere) don’t forget to exercise safety in the water and have fun with your hair!