Swimming is a great cardiovascular exercise and a wonderful way to take some ‘me time’ but you may find that it impacts the health of your skin and hair.
Worried about the effect chlorine and sea water could be having? Here we reveal our top natural skin care tips for swimmers, whether in the sea or at the pool.
After-swimming skin care routine
Use the following after-swimming skin care routine to replenish and rebalance dry skin:
STEP 1: RINSE
Thoroughly rinse the skin with Aloe Vera Shower Gel. This non-drying, SLS-free organic body wash refreshes the skin after swimming with hydrating Aloe Vera that leaves skin clean, balanced and soft. Subtly scented with soothing Lavender oils, it also helps to quench the scent of swimming pool chlorine.
We also love our men’s Energising Shower Gel for refreshing after a morning swim.
STEP 2: DRY
Gently pat the skin with a clean towel until it is almost dry. The ideal time to apply skin care after swimming is when your skin is slightly damp as humectants in your moisturisers will use the excess moisture to help your skin to hold onto hydration for longer.
STEP 3: REPLENISH
Once the skin is almost dry, massage a little Quinoa & Calendula Hand & Body Lotion into the skin. Rich in Squalane and Omega-3&6 essential fatty acids, it locks in moisture to protect the skin from dryness and has a fresh citrus scent which helps to mask any lingering scent of chlorine.
Moisturiser for swimmers
Water has a different pH to human skin and this means that a long swim will leave most skin types feeling temporarily tight and imbalanced.
For most, this feeling of tightness can be quickly rectified by thoroughly washing the skin of any skin-drying irritants, such as chlorine, and then applying a layer of nourishing, hydrating, pH-balanced skin care.
We recommend using a Squalane moisturiser as this nourishing, eczema-friendly active is known to help skin to retain moisture and seal it into the skin.
To make it easy for swimmers to replenish moisture in skin that feels tight after swimming, all our body lotions, shower gels and moisturisers are pH-balanced and rich in hydrating plant actives. They are also free from ingredients known to contribute to skin dryness, including ethanol alcohol.
Our favourite face and body moisturisers for swimmers are:
Skin care tips for swimmers with sensitive skin
If you have sensitive skin or regularly exposing your skin to chlorine leaves your skin particularly prone to dryness, there are some preventative measures you can take to help your skin feel more comfortable after swimming.
The National Eczema Society has some great tips for skin care for swimmers on their website and suggests initially swimming for a short time and monitoring how your skin responds to chlorine and other potential irritants[i].
Swimming in salt water is thought to help calm and soothe skin that is prone to eczema so you might also wish to consider switching your pool swim for a swim in the sea.
Our top skin care tips for swimmers are:
- Soothe with salve. If you suffer from dry skin after swimming, you might like to try our Soothing Baby Salve after drying off. Its naturally protective formula nourishes and calms itchy, dry skin which makes it an excellent after-swim salve for swimmers.
- Suit up. It’s advisable to wear a rash vest when participating in water sports or snorkelling, but those with sensitive or sun sensitive skin may also benefit from wearing UV-protective clothing when simply swimming in the sea or in chlorinated water.
- Shower before and after swimming. Thoroughly drench the hair and skin in water prior to swimming to minimise chlorine uptake and reduce the risk of hair discolouration and skin irritation. Whilst you might be tempted to use fragranced shower gels to mask the smell of chlorine, sensitive skin is best cleansed with a scent-free shower gel made without SLS.
Hair care for swimmers
Chlorine can strip the natural oils away from the surface of the hair and scalp but washing the hair immediately after swimming with hair care containing Artichoke can help minimise damage.
Artichoke Leaf, a key ingredient in Green People’s Quinoa & Artichoke Shampoo, revitalises dry skin and hair, and works as a protective shield for hair cuticles. Used alongside the matching Quinoa & Artichoke Conditioner, it makes the perfect hair care for swimmers.
Marine-friendly sun cream for outdoor swimmers
Being underwater can provide some protection from harmful UVA & UVB rays but swimmers can still be vulnerable to sunburn when swimming.
Did you know? Half a metre of water will let 40% of UVB light through, and if the water is cool you might not realise your skin is burning[ii].
To protect your skin, apply a water-repellent sun cream at least 20 minutes before exposing your skin to the sun. Neither a wetsuit nor a rash vest will cover the entire body so if you are swimming in the sea, apply a water-repellent sun cream liberally to exposed skin before you get in the water, and reapply once you get out.
Looking for a marine-friendly sun lotion for swimmers? Green People’s organic sun lotion is made without the chemical ingredients that are known to pose a threat to marine species and we donate to the Marine Conservation Society each time one of our full-size, scent-free sun care tubes is purchased.
Would you like help finding an organic swimming skin care routine? For help finding the ideal products for your skin type, please contact our friendly UK customer care team at email@example.com or on 01403 740350.
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[i] National Eczema Society, 2018