woman floating on body of water

Here are 5 simple ways to remove chlorine from hair.

woman floating on body of water

It’s likely that you have spent some time in a pool, either at the local leisure center or in the sun.

No matter how often or brilliantly you collect chlorine in your hair, the end result is the same: a dry texture and split ends. While this tends to be most noticeable in blondes and gray hair colors, it can also affect highlights and highlights. However, everyone is susceptible to side effects from having a good time.

“Chlorine is part the bleaching family and can alter the hair chemically,” Anabel Kingsley, Consultant Trichologist at Philip Kingsley. “Chlorinated water may be drying and, due to its copper content, could turn blond hair green.” But color is not the only result. “Chlorine can strip the natural oils in your hair, making it dry, brittle and dull,” states Hannah Gaboardi, a trichologist and Viviscal ambassador.

Yikes. We’re not going to stop you from your 7am Swimfit class. No less than doctor-approved solutions. These are the best ways to remove chlorine from hair so you can have fun in the pool.



If you have heard it before, please stop me: Prevention is better than treatment. It is much easier to prevent hair damage from happening than to fix it later. You can do this by placing a blocker between your hairline and the water.

Dr Neera Nathan of NN Health Consultancy LLC says, “The most important thing to do is to have a barrier between your scalp and your hair and chlorine. This can cause damage both.” This is especially important if you have sensitive skin. Dr Nathan warns that “Chlorine can cause irritation dermatitis to your scalp or skin.” A swimming cap is the best choice. You can also try products that coat hair and scalp to protect it.

Our beauty editor recommends

Phillip Kingsley Swimcap: Anabel recommends sprinkling this on your hair and scalp. This product was originally designed for the US Olympic Synchronized Swim Team. Sold!


In truth, this is step two. There’s another way to remove chorine from hair if you don’t have the baggage allowance or forethought. This is called ‘fight fire with flame’.

If you’re lucky enough to swim in a pool, rinse your hair with water before. This will protect the hair from chlorine and help coat it. Simply put, clorinated water can’t be absorbed by hair that is already wet. You can either filter or bottle your water, or simply take a dip in the poolside tub.


It’s not surprising that experts recommend washing your hair after you have dipped, swam, or splashed about. You should wash your hair as soon as possible. If that is not possible, you can give it another rinse in hot water. Gaboardi says that if you are on holiday, it is best to avoid wetting your hair in the swimming pool. However, he advises that you rinse it immediately afterwards.

Pre-wash products that remove product buildup and residue from hair water are also an option. These sprays and serums can be used directly on the hair and scalp, and then rinsed off with water to remove any mineral deposits. Even if you don’t have the luxury of a full shampoo, this is possible.

Our beauty editor recommends:

Vegamour Gro-Scalp Detoxifying Cream: This clever serum is designed to reduce buildup and protect the hair. It contains antioxidant-packed marula and baobab oils, as well as nourishing omega 6-9 fatty acids. For soft, silky hair, massage it in and let it sit for five minutes. Rinse with water to rinse.


If you have a shower and shampoo, use it. Lather, rinse and repeat. Kingsley advises that you shampoo your hair twice to remove any chlorine and to use a moisturizing conditioner afterward.

A mild shampoo and conditioner that can be used on the scalp will work best. Dr Nathan says that a gentle anti-inflammatory shampoo is recommended and that a conditioner be used to protect the hair shaft from damage. How often should you wash your hair after a long swim? Dr Nathan says that you should wash your hair every time it is exposed to chlorine.

You may have heard of a DIY method that removes chlorine from hair. Baking soda can shift hair deposits. Mix a tablespoon of it into 200ml of water, and use it as a shampoo. You’ll feel it a bit strange, and it won’t have all the care properties of shampoo. Follow up with a very moisturizing conditioner or one the best hair masks.

Our beauty editor recommends:

Viviscal Densifying Shampoo. This shampoo is super nourishing and rich in growth-encouraging vitamins, including biotin for your hair. Gaorbadi’s favorite post-swim shampoo, because it “protects your hair against damaging agents.”


You may have heard of the old wisdom that tomato ketchup can remove chlorine from hair. Heinz’s finest won’t condition your hair and certainly won’t clarify it. Kingsley says there may be something in the bottle that can help you with your hair color. She explains that the idea of tomato ketchup being used is not a myth. Red and green are opposites in the color spectrum so the tomato neutralizes yellow brassy tones. It doesn’t always work, so be careful!

If your hair is tangled and has lost its luster after following steps 1-4, you might want to give it a go. Chlorine can make blonde hair a little khaki. Mix 12 aspirin with warm water, and then rinse your hair. This problem can also be solved by applying tomato ketchup to your hair and then rinsing. It’s best to leave it on for about 10 minutes and then rinse your hair thoroughly.

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