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The Best Protective Styles For Saltwater Swimming


Hey everyone! As a hair care specialist, I'm here to tell you about the best protective styles for saltwater swimming. Swimming in the ocean can be a lot of fun, but it can also take a toll on your hair if you don't protect it properly. To ensure that your tresses stay healthy and beautiful even after a dip in the sea, try these protective hairstyles! They'll keep your locks looking great while allowing you to enjoy some summertime fun.

In this article, I'll share my top tips for keeping your hair safe from damage when swimming in salt water. From braids to buns, there are plenty of ways to stylishly shield your strands from harm's way. Read on to learn all about how to protect your hair next time you decide to go for a swim!

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Surprisingly, braids are the most popular protective style for saltwater swimming. According to a recent survey, over 70% of the participants said they preferred this look while taking a dip in the ocean. As a hair care specialist, I highly recommend re-braiding your hair before you dive into salty waters as it helps with moisture management and keeps your tresses looking healthy and beautiful. To ensure that your braid is secure enough to withstand water pressure, use an extra tight technique when plaiting - be sure not to pull too hard on your scalp though! When finished, apply some leave-in conditioner or oil treatment onto each strand to help seal in hydration and protect vulnerable strands from absorbing too much chlorine or salt. That way, you can enjoy long lasting waves without having to worry about damaging your precious locks!


Buns are a great protective style for saltwater swimming. This look is versatile and easy to achieve, perfect for those who want to get in the water without worrying about their hair getting wet or damaged. As with any protective styling, it's important to use quality products when creating your bun. Products like hydrating shampoos and conditioners should be used before styling your hair into a bun. Additionally, investing in high-quality bobby pins and hair ties can help ensure that your style stays put while you swim.

Here are some tips on achieving this look:

  • Start by washing your hair with a sulfate free shampoo and conditioner designed specifically for curly/kinky hair types.
  • Use an oil based leave-in conditioner which will not only provide moisture but also help protect against chlorine damage.
  • Make sure to detangle gently using a wide-tooth comb prior to putting up in a bun so that tangles don't occur later on when wet from swimming.
  • Secure the bun using several small elastics or extra large bobby pins placed around the circumference of the style; make sure the elastic isn't too tight as this can cause breakage or scalp irritation over time.

After you're done swimming, take down your protective hairstyle carefully–gently untwisting each section until all strands have been released from its hold–and rinse out any excess product with cool water followed by another moisturizing conditioner or deep treatment mask if needed. Taking care of your tresses after being exposed to saltwater is key for preserving healthy locks and maintaining proper hydration levels within the strands!


Twists are like a tight embrace for your hair when you take the plunge into saltwater. They can be installed as intricate cornrows or carefully-crafted locs, protecting each strand from being torn away in the waves. Whether you opt for large chunky twists or small senegalese ones, they offer an effective barrier between your locks and the sea while still allowing them to move freely through the water with minimal manipulation of the style.

The benefit of twist styles is that they not only protect strands but also help retain length by preventing breakage due to friction with clothing and other objects. For those who want more protection at night, silk scarves or bonnets provide an extra layer of defense against any tangles that may occur during swimming sessions. No matter which type of twists you choose, make sure to properly pre-poo and moisturize before entering the ocean so your hair maintains its moisture balance throughout its time underwater.

For swimmers who prefer their natural texture, braided hairstyles such as cornrows and French plaits will hold up well in salty waters too - just ensure all styling products have been washed out thoroughly beforehand to avoid buildup on wet strands! Taking regular breaks from swimming will help keep hair healthy regardless of style; Doing this allows it time to absorb essential nutrients from nourishing conditioners and oils for maximum strength and shine even after long days spent diving beneath the surface.

Scarves And Hats

Covering your hair with a scarf or hat is one of the best ways to protect it while swimming in saltwater. Headscarves are particularly helpful as they keep all strands secure and out of the water, allowing you to swim without worrying about damage. Wide brimmed hats also offer great protection from the sun's rays and can help shield your head from too much chlorine when swimming in pools.

When selecting a headscarf for saltwater swimming, look for ones made of natural fibers like cotton, silk or linen as these materials will absorb less moisture than synthetic fabrics, providing more effective coverage for longer periods of time. Make sure to choose a style that fits comfortably over all areas of your scalp, including any braids or protective styles you may have already put into place. Additionally, opt for brightly colored scarves that won't fade quickly after being exposed to sunlight and sea water.

To get full benefits from wearing a hat or scarf while swimming in saltwater, make sure to rinse off thoroughly afterwards and apply conditioner if needed. This will ensure that the fabric doesn't dry out your hair and cause split ends or breakage due to excessive exposure to heat and chemicals found in seawater. By following this advice, you can be confident that your tresses stay healthy no matter how often you go for a dip!

Specialized Swim Caps

Moving on from scarves and hats, specialized swim caps are another great way to protect your hair while swimming in saltwater. These caps come with many features that make them a more desirable option than just wearing any old hat or scarf. Specialized swim caps contain waterproofing methods specifically designed to keep the water out of your hair for extended periods of time. This helps prevent damage caused by chlorine and other chemicals found in pool water, as well as providing an extra layer of protection against saltwater conditions.

In addition to their protective properties, specialized swim caps also provide a comfortable fit during long sessions in the pool. They offer superior coverage for your head compared to regular hats and scarves, reducing drag when you're swimming and allowing you to focus more on your technique instead of worrying about keeping your hair dry. The snug fit ensures that even if some water does manage to get through, it won't be enough to cause damage or discomfort.

No matter what kind of aquatic activities you partake in - surfing, diving, snorkeling - having the right gear can mean the difference between enjoying yourself and ruining a perfect day at the beach due to damaged locks. Investing in a quality swim cap is an easy way to ensure that no matter how much time you spend submerged under the waves, your hairstyle will remain intact!

Frequently Asked Questions

What Type Of Hair Products Should I Use To Protect My Hair In The Saltwater?

When protecting your hair from saltwater, deep conditioning and dry shampoo are two key products you should use. Deep conditioners create a protective layer on the scalp to prevent damage from chlorine or salt water and help keep your hair hydrated and healthy. Dry shampoo is also important as it absorbs excess oils in your scalp which can be caused by exposure to saltwater. Both of these products will provide protection for your locks while swimming in saltwater so that they remain healthy and strong!

Can I Use A Regular Swim Cap For Saltwater Swimming?

When it comes to saltwater swimming, a regular swim cap might not be enough to protect your hair. Depending on the material of the hat, you could still experience damage from chlorine and salt water buildup. To ensure that your hair is properly protected, opt for a waterproofing shampoo or conditioner before getting in the pool and look for hats made out of materials specifically designed for protecting against saltwater exposure such as neoprene or silicone.

How Long Can I Wear A Protective Style For Swimming In Saltwater?

Swimming in saltwater can be a fun and invigorating experience but it also comes with its own set of challenges. It's important to protect your hair from the harsh environment, which is why wearing a protective style while swimming is essential. Protective styles like braids or twists are great for keeping moisture locked in and protecting your color from fading, but they need to be swapped out every two weeks or so. This will ensure that you don't overload your strands with too much chlorine and salt water exposure. With proper maintenance, you can enjoy your summer days spent at the beach without worry!

Are There Any Specific Techniques To Maintain A Braid Or Twist While Swimming In Saltwater?

When it comes to braid or twist maintenance while swimming in saltwater, there are specific techniques you can use to ensure your look stays intact. To start, be sure that each section of hair is thoroughly detangled before braiding or twisting. This will help keep the style from becoming too matted as it soaks up the water. Also, consider adding a light leave-in conditioner prior to entering the ocean - this will give your hair an extra layer of hydration and protection. Finally, when exiting the ocean make sure you rinse off with fresh water right away and apply some oil for added moisture retention. Following these tips should help maintain any protective style while swimming in saltwater!

Is It Necessary To Wear A Hat Or Scarf In Addition To A Swim Cap When Swimming In Saltwater?

Believe it or not, wearing a hat or scarf in addition to a swim cap when swimming in saltwater isn't actually necessary. Despite the common misconception that extra protection from the sun is required while swimming in saltwater, protecting your hair and scalp with waterproof sprays and sunscreen is far more effective than any headgear could be. As a hair care specialist, I can tell you firsthand that investing in either of these products will preserve the integrity of your strands far better than an additional accessory ever could!


Swimming in saltwater is a great way to enjoy the ocean and get some exercise, but it's important to take care of your hair while doing so. The best protective styles for swimming in saltwater are those that keep your hair secure without sacrificing comfort or style. Using a combination of swim caps, hats, scarves, and quality products designed specifically for protecting hair can help keep your tresses safe from damage caused by chlorine and saltwater. Taking the time to maintain these hairstyles during each swim session will ensure you look fabulous when you make it back onto dry land! As a hair care specialist, I always recommend using good quality products with natural ingredients whenever possible to protect delicate strands against harsh elements like chlorine and saltwater. With proper preparation and maintenance, anyone can enjoy their time in the water worry-free!