I would love to go swimming but I don't know what to do with my locs. Actually, I don't really know how to protect my hair and I am afraid seawater or chlorine will damage my locs.
If you can relate to these kinds of thoughts you know you are far from alone. So please read on because this is for you.
Locs, Dreadlocks, Sisterlocks, whatever type of locs you have, however you want to call them, are the most care-free hairstyle one can have. Not only is it get-up and go most of the time but because of the stigma still attached to dreadlocks, choosing to wear them resembles a free mindset and exuberance like no other hairstyle.
So, why would you even think that sea-water or chlorine could hold you back from enjoying summer at the beach or at a pool because you have locs? It really shouldn't. All you have to do is be prepared to take care of your gorgeous locs.
Locs at the beach
Interestingly enough some social media loc experts say that swimming in the sea helps your locs because sea water is salty and salty water tightens up your locs which helps them mature faster. Some even recommend making your own saltwater spray at home to spray on your locs.
I personally have never done that but I did take a dive in the sea more than once. Before going into the water I did get my locs wet. It's a trick that I learned when I was natural and it really works!
Wetting your hair before going into a pool or the sea makes sure that water is already trapped in your locs. So sea water nor pool water can hit as hard because the water retained in your hair automatically dilutes the salt and chlorine when you take a dive.
It may vary from beach to beach but seawater can soften your hair. It can make your hair feel soft and pliable and help against flakes and dandruff.
So if you are staying at a beach resort for a week or so, it is ok to just rinse your hair after you come out of the water. Do rinse thoroughly though and make sure your hair is dry before you go to sleep. Don’t tie it up while it is wet.
Dry your locs!!!
This is important. You don’t want to go to sleep with wet locs. It’s a recipe for mildew. Get the Loc Glove. This quick drying towel doesn't only get your hair to dry in half the time. The loc towel is also lint-free and doesn't allow beach sand or any type of lint to stay in there.
So, just shake the water out of your locs after rinsing them, squeeze excess water out then wrap your hair in the Loc Towel. Keep it on for an hour or so then take it off and let your hair air dry. Of course you can also use a blow dryer or sit under a hood but even so I promise you, you’ll be surprised how much quicker your locs will dry.
Tip: Make sure you get the large loc towel, the small one is really only for kids.
When your beach resort time is up, I do recommend you thoroughly wash your hair. Seawater can be an excellent natural treatment but I don’t recommend leaving sea salt in your hair for too long.
Locs in the pool
Unlike seawater, chlorine completely strips your hair which makes it feel hard and dry. On the other hand, chlorine might be the best antidote for mildew in locs. Chlorine is known to kill mildew. So, if you have buildup don’t even hesitate to jump into a pool.
You still need to be careful not to let chlorine dry in your hair though. After a day in the pool, I recommend you wash your hair. Just rinsing is not sufficient. Get the chlorine out of your hair.
Organic Shampoo Bomb
Get a loc bomb. It is known to get chlorine out of locs. You don’t need to do the complete hair spa basin and soak your hair on vacation. No, just use the Organic Shampoo Bomb like a soap and rub it through your locs after you have rinsed your hair. Let the bomb do its job for about 3 to 5 minutes then rinse it out thoroughly.
Then, also make sure your hair is dry before you go to bed. Use the same Loc Towel trick described above.
If you are in your early stages of locing, chances are taking a dive will unravel your hair or cause slippage. There is a reason why some loctitions recommend not washing your hair when you have starter locs.
If you are in this stage, I recommend getting a Soul Cap. These are swimming caps by a Black Owned company made for our type of hair whether it is loced or natural. Alice Dearing, first Black Brit who qualified for the Olympics raves about this swim cap as do others.
Now, I hope you can all enjoy swimming just a bit more. Need a bathing suit? Click to get a real fancy one!