Swimming FAQs

Do Swim Caps Keep Your Hair Dry?

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Do swim caps keep your hair dry? Dealing with wet hair can be a hassle, especially after a swim session when it is drenched. If you haven’t worn a swim cap before, you may be under the impression that this swim accessory may be the solution to your hair wetness problem, but is this actually the truth?

Because it isn’t their intended use, swim caps can’t completely dry hair. Swim caps are designed to make swimmers more hydrodynamic and to tame stray hairs. Swim caps, on the other hand, can help to keep hair only slightly damp rather than completely saturated.

In the sections that follow, we’ll discuss the underlying causes of swim caps’ inability to shield your priceless hair from pool water. For more advice on how to minimize hair wetness despite demanding underwater swimming exercises, read the article all the way to the end.

Benefits Of Wearing A Swim Cap

Even though they may feel strange and uncomfortable at first, swimming caps are great for all swimmers and have a number of advantages in the water.  

Although we encourage our swimmers to wear swim caps during swimming lessons or while in the pool, competitive swimmers do so because it makes their bodies more hydrodynamic and helps them swim faster.  

  • ensures that your hair is out of the way so you can concentrate on your swim or lesson. 
  • To prevent feeling your ponytail dangling in the water, tie up all of the hair, even those tiny flyaways. 
  • enables your goggles to stick to a smooth surface. 
  • increases your visibility in the water. 
  • gives your hair some protection. Swim caps add a thin layer of protection to your hair against chlorine deterioration, but they are not designed to keep your hair dry. 
  • helps keep your head warm during colder weather. 
  • minimizes the amount of hair in the filters, protecting our water and filtration system. 
  • ensures that long hair won’t end up tangled in the lane ropes and risk getting hurt. 

Why Do Swim Caps Fail To Fully Dry Hair?

The belief that swim caps would be your hair’s savior may have brought some of you to this article. I’m sorry to burst your bubble, but this is false for the reasons listed below.

Swim Caps Are Not Intended To Be Complete Water Sealants

Contrary to popular belief, the purpose of swim caps is unrelated to how wet your hair is. Instead, swim caps are primarily made to lessen water drag so that they can swim more quickly. In order to improve underwater visibility, they also serve the purpose of clearing hair from the swimmer’s face.

Swim caps may act as a physical barrier to help reduce some of the damaging effects that pool chemicals may have on your hair, but this was not the main objective of swim cap producers. Performance in the pool is their only concern; hairstyles are not important.

Additionally, you could contend that a swim cap that was 100 percent waterproof would hinder rather than improve swimming ability.

A swimmer’s scalp would be disproportionately warmer than the rest of their body if chilled water was prevented from reaching it. In addition to the lack of cool water, wearing a swim cap would help keep your head’s heat in check. You would definitely feel this extra trapped heat because the head accounts for 7 to 10% of total body heat loss.

Swimmers may become so distracted by their excessive head warmth that they begin to believe they are becoming overheated. These kinds of interruptions are typically bad for swimming, especially if the swimmer feels like their health is in danger.

Even if swim cap manufacturers were particularly interested in creating a watertight seal, it would be virtually impossible to do so. The nature of water, which is what we’ll talk about next, is a big factor in a lot of these issues.

Water Can Seep Into The Tiniest Cracks And Crevasses

The sad reality is that because of the characteristics of water, it is almost impossible to keep your hair completely dry while swimming. No matter how tight a seal appears to be, water has a way of revealing even the smallest access points.

For a swim cap to completely keep water out, an engineering miracle is required.

One is that no two swimmers have the same size and shape of a head. This is the reason a completely waterproof cap would need to be precisely shaped to fit the swimmer’s head. If the seal is too loose, water will seep in. The swim cap will be too uncomfortable to wear if it is too tight.

Humans don’t have skin that is completely smooth, so keep that in mind as well. Natural creases and wrinkles run throughout human skin, providing water with numerous entry points to seep slowly underneath the swim cap. To prevent any potential leaks, the cap would literally need to be fastened to the skin.

Unsurprisingly, such a project would require more resources than it would be worth. For these reasons, swimmers have to accept the fact that their hair will inevitably get wet.

Are Swim Caps Damaging To Your Hair?

For some people, the way swimming caps press against their hair can be an issue. Does it make your hair’s roots weaker? Will the color you just applied be destroyed by it?

Although there are some benefits and drawbacks, swimming caps are generally better for your hair than not. A swim cap can ensure that the least amount of water is in contact with your hair if you’re a swimmer who values your hair greatly.

Additionally, it can completely alter the experience for those who have long hair. Usually, hair floats on the water and obstructs your vision. Even when you tie it securely, it may still come undone occasionally. It might not sound so bad to a swimmer who swims for fun. However, a competitive swimmer might perform worse as a result of this.

For improved sealing, some people prefer tight swim caps. Some of my friends have been seen choosing a size smaller for a tighter fit. Despite the fact that it should be snug, your cap shouldn’t be so snug that it feels oppressive.

Select carefully, then. To find one that fits your head snugly but comfortably, it is better to visit a store and try on a few.

Swim Caps

Are Swimming Caps Effective At Protecting Hair From Chlorine?

A swim cap’s main function is to reduce the amount of water that touches your hair. A swimming cap will shield your hair not only from chlorine but also from a variety of other chemicals found in swimming pools. Even though this protection is not perfect, using one is still preferable to none at all.

That is just one of the many advantages swimming caps have. If you have long hair, swimming caps can be quite helpful. It will aid in preventing hair from becoming tangled and a mess after the session. Additionally, it will prevent your hair from freezing and rupturing during the winter.

Swim caps stop hair from falling into the water if you are concerned about hygiene. You don’t spread the dirt you carried in your hair to other swimmers, which aids the pool authority in maintaining a clean pool.

Why Do People Think Swim Caps Keep Hair Dry?

Because of how they look and fit tightly around the head, swim caps are frequently mistakenly believed to be waterproof. People frequently believe that swim caps have an airtight seal because of the way they look and feel.

People frequently underestimate how adept water is at identifying weak spots in a seal and taking advantage of such vulnerabilities. The fluid state of water is not something to be taken lightly, as was previously mentioned, especially when you consider how much time swimmers spend with their heads underwater during a workout.

It also doesn’t help that certain swim cap products have been marketed as “waterproof” to the public. These so-called “waterproof swim caps” are often meant for activities where an individual’s head is predominantly above water, like water aerobic exercises, for instance.

Since they are not submerged underwater, a person may be able to keep their hair completely dry in these conditions. Unfortunately, the majority of a swimmer’s workout is spent with their heads submerged.

Consequently, when a swimmer tries on one of these “waterproof swim caps,” they’re shocked to find that they’re not so waterproof after all.

Please, don’t believe any swim cap that says its product is 100% effective at keeping water out. Instead, you keep your expectations reasonable and prepare yourself for post-swim wetness.

How Can You Keep Your Hair Dry While Swimming?

Even though you can’t completely rule out the possibility that your hair will become damp regardless of the swimming cap you use, taking the following precautions will help:

  1. In case you have long hair, tie it high up.
  2. Put on a snug silicone cap that covers your ears.
  3. To increase protection, double the caps.
  4. For a better fit, place a pair of goggles on top of the cap.
  5. Keep your aggression in check so the cap doesn’t come off.
  6. As little as possible should be spent in the water.

It is strongly advised to rinse your hair before going swimming because it will moisturize it and make it fit better with your cap while also reducing the amount of chlorine your hair can absorb even if you are exposed to it.

Short hair is preferable, but if you do have long hair, make sure to tie it up in a bun as high as you can. It is preferable to medium-sized hair that is difficult to style into a bun and frequently erupts from hats.

The caps can be doubled up for greater water resistance. It’s possible for the one that goes inside to be very thin, like a Latex cap. But silicone caps are advised for the outer later. If you have a choice, choose something long enough to completely enclose the ears.

Avoid the mistake of putting goggles under your cap. For the water, it will make a chasm. The strap on these goggles will hold the cap tighter if you do it the other way around. And finally, the obvious one: Your hair will get wet less if you are in the water if you are shorter.

How Can You Dry Your Hair Without A Swim Cap?

I’m hoping you’re not hoping for a miracle. Your hair will get wet if you are entering the water, regardless of what. The following steps will be helpful if your main concern is preventing the chlorine effect rather than getting your hair wet:

  1. By taking a 5-minute shower, soak your hair.
  2. Apply a conditioner.
  3. Swim in the water now.
  4. Soon after running out of water, shampoo your hair.
  5. Rinse your hair thoroughly for 5–10 minutes if shampooing is not possible right away.

Soaking your hair thoroughly right before you enter the water is a good way to get ready for a pool full of chemicals. So once you’re in the water, your hair would already be so saturated that it couldn’t absorb any more.

The addition of a conditioner will provide an additional layer of defense. It wouldn’t be necessary, but specialized pre-swimming conditioners would be good. The pool water will have to work harder to penetrate your hair’s outer layer. You’ll get a little more time in the pool as a result.

Now, this is crucial. Making sure there is no debris in your hair after exiting the water is imperative. Shampooing your hair is the ideal method for achieving this. If possible, shampoo your hair in the pool’s restroom. If that is not possible, make sure to rinse your hair with fresh water for 5 minutes.


No matter how many swim caps you wear or what type of hairstyle you go with, you should expect your hair to get at least slightly wet when you swim underwater. However, water will eventually find a way past your swim cap seal. There are ways to slightly reduce how wet your hair gets.

Don’t let your hair getting too wet stop you from going swimming! Swimming offers a lot more benefits than just wet hair.