I have blond (well, I guess it’s more blond “ish” at this point) hair, that is super fine in texture but thick. It also doesn’t really like ocean water or chlorine that much. One dip in the ocean, and at its current length–without some product help–it would take me at least a day, swearing, and some gobs of hair in the trash to comb it out.
I also recently started swimming quite a bit more (getting in to triathlons!), and while I couldn’t tell a difference with one swim a week, when I went to two swims a week my hair took a nosedive. It’s pretty amazing that when I was a child with long, super blond hair that it didn’t look a whole lot worse after those twice a day 2-3 hour swim workouts! I do remember making my mom buy me a whole lot of UltraSwim shampoo and other products to ensure I could actually run my fingers through it without an ouch.
So, considering we are headed to the Galapagos for a lot of time in the ocean, I wanted to share some products I love that help my hair survive/repair both chlorine and salt water. Also–whoever started the urban legend that wearing a swim cap protects your hair is an idiot…is your hair still wet under the cap? Exactly. I still am not entirely convinced that putting conditioner on your hair under the cap does much else than condition the pool either. And who wears a swim cap in the ocean, other than for triathlons or open water swims?
1. Biosilk Silk Therapy
I don’t know what’s in this stuff, though I’m guessing not really much silk (label says ethyl ester of hydrolyzed silk…ha…it is paraben free). This stuff is a miracle. Rub a glob on after you are in the ocean/pool and you’ll think your hair really feels like silk. Particularly useful for the ends–it makes my hair a touch greasy if I smear too much of it on my roots. Super useful product that literally erases the “straw hair” feeling with a quarter size dollop.
I know I’ll be in and out of the water probably twice per day in the Galapagos. And on a boat, showering twice a day just isn’t really reasonable (or practical, when you are sweating, in the water, out of the water, sweating…). Biosilk will ensure my hair stays tangle free and is a bit more protected from all the salt and sun (though it doesn’t pronounce to have UV protection).
I find it’s cheapest on Amazon; Aveda salons sometimes carry it as well. You can find travel size bottles! For the quantity you get and what this stuff does, it’s a steal.
2. Triswim Conditioner
This is a new product for me, but I find it works on my hair better than anything else I’ve tried. It’s a thick conditioner that is not to leave any residue (though I rarely blow dry my hair to find out if that claim is true). It leaves my hair thick, shiny, and not at all greasy and has Keratin in it too. It smells not so bad. It’s great for using when you actually do wash your hair after a day at the pool or beach.
I also have the Triswim shampoo, and I find it runny, weird smelling, and not that great. I’ll use the rest of it but won’t pick up another bottle.
Amazon is also my go to for TriSwim! Also paraben free. Not super expensive, runs $15 or so a bottle.
3. Bumble & Bumble Sunday Shampoo
This is a long standby for me, in the water and out of it. Though I really appreciate it’s effectiveness now that I’m swimming more. It’s a shampoo meant to be used weekly to give the hair a good cleanse, cleaning off residue from other products as well as oil. It’s refreshing to use. It also makes my hair feel really, really clean without ever drying it out or making it brittle.
Find it at Sephora. More expensive at $25 for 8 oz, but you are only supposed to be using it once per week after all. A bottle lasts me a really long time; I still haven’t found anything else I like better. At salons that carry Bumble and Bumble you can find travel sizes, but they are hard to order.
4. Living Proof Restore Instant Protection
I have gotten into the habit of curling my hair a bit more frequently, and this stuff is great to spray on before any type of heat tool. But it also protects from UV rays, which is pretty cool. A quick spray of this after you get out of the water not only gives you the semblance of control of those flyaways, it offers your hair some protection from the effects of chlorine/salt + sun that can do such a number on many hair types.
Plus, it smells delicious. I usually buy off the Living Proof website (here), but you can also find it on Sephora and Ulta. It also isn’t cheap, but it’s a good buy and lasts for some time. Also comes in a travel size on their website (though that size is crazy expensive)–better to watch for one of Living Proof’s great deals/bonus offers, which happen routinely.
What products get your hair through sand, salt, chlorine, and the sun with minimal damage/disaster?