Hair Loss Awareness 101 – Salt Water

4. True or False? Swimming in the ocean causes hair loss.

False:  Salt water does not cause hair loss. Like chlorine, prolonged saltwater saturation can cause your hair to become dry and brittle. It is recommended to saturate your hair with clean fresh water before diving into a pool or the ocean to keep your hair from absorbing the chlorine and salt.

Protecting your hair: If you do not want to wear a swim cap, wet your hair before you swim. Use about a quarter sized amount of conditioner and run it through your hair. This saturates your hair so that not as much salt water from the ocean can be absorbed. Rinse your hair thoroughly with clean, fresh water immediately after swimming in the ocean. Use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner after swimming. Also try using deep conditioners once a week help bring more moisture to your hair, especially if you swim a lot.

Other protective alternatives: Work high-silicone conditioner into clean, dry hair before you head for the beach. Pour approximately one capful of conditioner at a time, squeezing to distribute it throughout your hair. Comb with the wide-tooth comb until you’re sure every part of your hair is saturated (not dripping) with conditioner.


If your hair is long, braid it using a non-metal hair tie to secure the end of the braid. If your hair is shorter, section it off into several short ponytails, using a hair tie at the top and bottom of each ponytail. Remove all braids and hair ties after swimming and wash your hair with mild, conditioning shampoo. Follow with a silicone conditioner. Let hair dry naturally, or towel drying indoors, avoid blow drying with heat.