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There’s nothing worse than jetting off on holiday with salon-fresh highlights, only to see them turn 50 shades of green after a quick dip in the pool.
The dreaded green tinge (a result of the pool’s chlorine oxidising the copper) is widely accepted as a fact of life for blondes across the globe, as evidenced by Love Island’s Lucinda Strafford who recently fell victim to the phenomenon after spending too much time in the villa pool.
But why does it happen – and can it be avoided?
Tyla enlisted the help of celebrity hair stylist Tom Smith who explains why the dreaded ‘green staining’ happens – and how to keep your locks golden throughout the summer.
“Think of your hair like a sponge,” he explains. “A dry sponge will absorb all of the liquid it is soaked in, whereas an already-soaked sponge will absorb much less.
“For this reason, at an absolute minimum, I always recommend my clients pre-soak their hair in clean water before swimming (in chlorinated or even salt water pools). It’s the chlorine-treated water that can cause a green tinge in more porous blonde or bleached hair types due to the absorption of the element into the hair strand.”
If you want to take your poolside haircare a step further, Tom recommends reaching for a hair mask or even (bear with me) a swim cap: “For the absolute best protection from dryness and green staining I recommend soaking the hair with clean water and then coating the hair with the thickest, oiliest hair mask you can find.
“You don't have to spend a lot on this as its main purpose is to create a barrier over the hair, rather than ‘treat’ it.”
He adds: “After coating your hair in the mask, make sure to wear a swimming cap to stop the mask from washing off into the water and further protect your hair. Converse to popular opinion a swimming cap was not designed to keep your hair dry – but to keep it tidy and out of your face, pre-soaking and coating with a mask before adding a swim cap gives the maximum protection.”
And as for post-swim TLC?
“When you’ve finished swimming, make sure to shampoo and condition your hair immediately after to remove any residue of chemicals or drying elements from the pool water,” Tom advises.
“Sometimes porous bleached hair can even go slightly green or dull due to being washed in extremely hard water, even if you never swim. In some parts of the world tap water contains high amounts of minerals and contaminants that can discolour the hair (and even cause problems for future hair colouring services).”
Tom recommends using Dream Filter from Color Wow (£26, colorwowhair.com) for removing contaminants; it can be sprayed on dry hair three minutes before your usual shampoo.
Happy holidays, ladies!
Featured Image Credit: Universal Pictures
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