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Pools are fun, but chlorine water isn't. Not for your natural hair, anyway. Here is how to protect your hair from the harsh chemicals in pools.

1. Cover up

Although most people find this option too unfashionable to wear, it is also the most protective. Especially if you will be swimming frequently, this is a crucial part of your pre-swimming routine. This is also a convenient way to keep your hair dry while you are swimming. For extra protection cover your hair in a little oil to repel any water that may get under the swim cap.

2. Pre-soak

Before you dive into the pool, take a minute to soak your hair in some conditioner beforehand. First, wet your hair, then generously apply a thick coat of conditioner and make sure you get all parts of your hair.

3. Oil it

Take a cue from the greeks who use olive oil as a barrier between their hair and potentially damaging things in the Mediterranean Sea. Apply oil liberally to wet hair before you get into the pool. Make sure to reach all sections of your hair. Due to the fact that chlorine stronger than these substances, it is suggested that you use the oil method in addition to the pre-soak. If you do that, you should soak your hair with a large amount of conditioner THEN apply oil over the conditioner to lock it in and lock chlorine out.

4. Tuck away

Don't swim without tying your hair up or tucking it away in some protective style. You can try ponytails or braids or buns. Not wearing your hair loose will prevent your hair from being even more stripped of its natural oils. It will also keep your hair from matting up.

5. Wash it

Wash your hair as soon as possible after getting out of the pool. Try using an organic hair cleanser like apple cider vinegar that will do less damage to your hair than a shampoo with sulfates. Another solution would be using a no-poo which is a cleanser that doesn’t have sulfates in it so it can’t do further damage to your hair. After washing your hair be sure use either your regular conditioner or, more preferably, a deep conditioner to replenish the moisture lost from the chlorine.

6. Don't touch

Because your hair is so fragile right after coming into contact with chlorine, avoid playing with your hair because you can cause it to fray or break. Also be gentle when you are cleansing, detangling and conditioning after your swim.