Part I – Hair – How Swimming Makes You UGLY

A casual comment from Mau after our last swim on how we are really getting big was a like a shot in between the eyes. Of course he meant it as a compliment because we are getting our arms and shoulders back into swimming shape. But to any female swimmer, big shoulders and arms is just one of the many physical downsides of the sport.  Here is the first of a series on how SWIMMING MAKES YOU UGLY and a shout out to all of the product managers out there looking for a problem to solve. Please let us know how swimming has made you ugly and feel free to post your own pictures if you have any to share.


Dry, frizzy, brittle, orange or green.  Swimming regularly with pool chemicals or salt water and UVA rays can permanently give you trashy looking hair. There needs to be a product that can use both the pool chemicals and the sea-water to infuse the hair into being luxurious after a workout.  Imagine, spending the day at the beach being the equivalent to having a deep conditioning all-day hair mask. Who wouldn’t buy this product?

I have tried everything from drug store products to the high-end treatments.  While the Keratin treatment was, in my mind, is a huge and much-needed advancement in hair care technology, the fact that it is less affective the more you wash your hair, annuls any positive effect.  Keratin is great for hot humid summers, but are you going to spend days sweating at the beach and never get wet? What if you like to run or bike every day, not being able to regularly wash your hair is just too much of a drawback of the Keratin treatment solution.

My current hair care program involves the following;

Pre-swim: I generously apply Vita-Cream with Milk-Protein for Fine Hairmask from JF Lazartigue and use a silicone cap (by the way silicone is a great improvement from that hospital-rubber-glove-type cap). While this combo does a pretty good job at not destroying the top layer of my hair during practice, I do notice an overall slow deterioration to my hair quality.

Shampoo/Conditioner: I get the best result for hair quality if I use Alterna Caviar Shampoo and Conditioner right after practice.  This is by far the best product on the market for unruly hair that breaks easily and goes wild in humidity.

A new additional ugly hair problem that only affects the older set, is the coloring. If you have 5 or 50 grey hairs and color them from time to time, the pool and beach are your enemies.  My dark brown hair becomes unnaturally tinted orange; the sort of effect that I had after spraying Sun-In in my hair as an early teen.  Not something to be repeated.

Product call out: Man was able to create the technology to go to the moon and destroy the world over 30 years ago, I contend that it cannot be impossible to create a product that both repairs and improves hair while swimming and sunbathing?  Can we also get a coloring agent that doesn’t make my hair orange?

Categories: Products, Training


5 replies

  1. Swimming makes women ugly?? Nonsense! It might mess up your hair a bit or something, but women swimmers are smokin’ hot!

  2. I use a product called “UltraSwim”. They make shampoo, condition, and bodywash. I have been using the shampoo for almost 20 years. Great product. There are a few other brands out there too. I buy mine at CVS drug stores in the States.

  3. Ultra swim, I remember that but I didn’t think it was still around…again, I live in Spain so I am a bit out of touch but I do load up on drug store products every time I get to the US (which makes for heavy baggage). Thanks!

  4. Very interesting ideas. Don’t forget swimming makes women fatter too!! For some reason women swimmers have larger body fat than for other athletic disciplines. So doing some gym will help you tone down your body. 🙂


  1. Part III Skin – How Swimming Makes You Ugly « Swimming the Strait of Gibraltar

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