I get many questions emailed to me which I always do my best to answer in a timely manner. This question from S.K in Singapore was fitting for so many people that I had to post it:
Hi Andrea: I would appreciate if you could give some tips on hair care. I permed and coloured my long hair last Nov. I intend to swim once a week from next week onwards to keep fit. However, I am aware that chlorine is bad for my hair. What can I do to still keep my curls in shape? Thanks! S.K
image from Hallelu
Of course a swimming cap would be my first suggestion but they aren't the prettiest of things to wear.
- You can braid/tie up your hair with a little cream rinse which will also protect the hair a little while swimming.
- If you rinse your hair with tap water or even bottled water prior to getting into the pool it helps - one of those crazy but true beauty tips - think of a sponge, once it's wet it can't get any wetter, the same with your hair. The water without the chlorine soaks your hair first.
- You can buy sunscreen for your hair which helps protect your colour as well. Aveda makes one. A lightweight, water-resistant UV defense mist that forms an invisible screen to help protect hair from sun exposure for up to 16 hours, to minimize color fadage, damage and dryness.
- Always wash your hair after swimming. If you are only swimming once a week the effect from the chlorine will be minimal but do condition your hair after swimming and comb it through with a wide-tooth comb prior to rinsing. NOTE: Conditioner should be used with each washing so after your swimming you may want to have a slightly strong/treatment conditioner.Check out: A Quick Guide to Great Hair
- Ask your hairstylist to point cut the ends of your hair to promote the curls and make sure you have layers. Layers will take the weight off your hair and help shape the curls. Don't be afraid of long layers; layering doesn't mean mullet.
- A key to styling curly hair, whether natural or permed, is that you do not want to touch the hair as it's drying otherwise the curl will separate, drop and go frizzy. So, if you are air-drying leave it to dry all the way before you tousle with your fingers or if you diffuse it, let your diffuser do the work, not your hands.
- Make sure that you are using a styling cream or some sort of curly hair product. Many women think perms are a solution to wash 'n' go but there is a little work involved.
- Check out Deva Curl for some great styling tips that work for both natural and permed curls.