How to Get Chlorine Out of Hair: 5 Effective Methods

how to get chlorine out of hair

Summer has arrived! Who doesn’t enjoy a dip in the pool on a hot day? Well, that would be me. Basically, I know the depths I would have to go when I learned how to get chlorine out of hair, and to be honest it’s not a ton of fun.

Unfortunately, I recently had to put my knowledge to the test. You see, several weeks ago my friend and I took our daughters swimming. That isn’t unusual, but my daughter who just turned nine finally realized I never put my head under the water. I wade, bob, and sit on the step, but heaven forbid I submerge.

But, due to peer pressure, I engaged in a game of Marco Polo. Was this a mistake? Yes….yes it was.

After returning home, I realized that my freshly colored highlights went from a lovely shade of blondish-red to a hideous shade of ashy-green. I knew I was playing a game of Russian Roulette, and I lost big time! The Wicked Witch of the West would definitely want my hairdresser’s cell number.

That’s when my skills related to how to get chlorine out of hair came in handy.

Are You a Candidate for Chlorine Damaged Hair?

The simple answer to that is yes. Everyone is a candidate for chlorine damage. However, some people are more at risk than others.

If you meet the following criteria, you will want to take extra care of your hair or you’ll be learning how to get chlorine out of hair:

  • Hair that is colored or has highlights or lowlights
  • Hair that is colored with a semi-permanent color
  • Chemically treated hair that has been permed or straightened
  • Fine or thin hair
  • Dry hair
  • Damaged hair from too many chemical treatments

Do We Really Need Chlorine?

Unfortunately, chlorine is a necessity. Without it, we’d all be swimming in a petri dish of harmful germs.

There are a number of ways that bacteria can grow in a swimming pool. Some bacteria can enter the water through environmental contaminants such as dust, debris, and algae.

And some bacteria can enter the water through human interaction. Think about all of those little kids who can’t make it to the bathroom in time.


Image via: Flickr

So really, chlorine is sort of a knight in shining armor. But with the good, always comes the bad.

This cleansing chemical will not only dry out your skin but it also dulls hair by depriving it of its natural oils, turning it dry, damaged and listless as well as breaking down hair color molecules. Think of a scarecrow…now think of it’s stuffing…now imagine this is your hair.

With that being said, chlorine is not the reason for stripping and changing the color of your hair. The metal copper, which can be naturally found in pool water, is the main culprit — chlorine merely aids in the process.

When copper is mixed with chlorine, it becomes oxidized. This chemical compound can bind to your locks by sneaking into the cracks of your hair cuticle, giving you that Kermit the Frog effect.

So, if you are wondering how to take a dip in the pool, or swim your daily laps, you’ve come to the right place!

​How to Get Chlorine out of Hair

Don’t allow chlorine damage to get in the way of your summer fun. There are a number of ways to prevent and treat this little nuisance.

1. Pre-game Pool Time

Pre-game Pool time

Image via: Pixabay

It is always a good idea to soak your hair with clean, cold water before getting your swim on! Wet hair is not as likely to absorb chlorine as dry hair. Plus, there won’t be as much to wash out afterward.

Coldwater also helps seal in hair dye, preventing color from fading. So take a quick cold shower, or find a garden hose for a brisk soak and slight shock to the system. It might hurt a little, but it will definitely help in the long run.

2. Oil and Water

oil and water

Image via: Pixabay

Before we talk about how to get chlorine out of hair, let’s discuss the beauty of oil and water and how they don’t mix.

Why not put this little well-known science fact to use? Try working an oil or silicone-based product into your hair before taking the plunge.

You can, of course, buy a salon product that is specifically for this. You can also use a product that calms frizzy hair, but if you’re on a budget, coconut oil or even olive oil will do the same trick.

It acts as a buffer between your well-maintained mane, and that pool of chemicals you’re about to dive into. Work in a dime-size amount and then consider putting your hair up in a braid or tight bun. That will minimize the oil from seeping into the water.

3. Wash and Don’t Go

Wash and dont go

Image via: Pixabay

After a day of swimming and laying out in the sun, it could be tempting to go home, have dinner, sit in front of the television, and let sleep take over. Do not fall into temptation!

As soon as your purse hits the ground (or wallet is tossed onto the side table) get in the shower. This is without a doubt, the best method when it comes to how to get chlorine out of hair.

First, it is really important to wash with products that are safe for color-treated hair. Your best bet is to use a hydrating shampoo that is specifically designed to remove chlorine from your hair. You will also want one that restores moisture at the same time.

If you want to use a clarifying shampoo, use it sparingly. Although these are great for removing product build-up, they can dry your hair out and even fade your color.

If your pocketbook is telling you it’s not worth it to buy yet another shampoo, check your pantry for some apple cider vinegar. It is safe to use, even for color-treated hair. It can remove all sorts of buildup, leaving your hair shiny and healthy.

If you want to know how to get chlorine out of hair using apple cider vinegar, just mix four parts water to one part vinegar. It is easier to put the mixture into a spray bottle. Spray the concoction all over your hair, massaging as you go. Let it sit for about three to five minutes. Rinse. Condition.

​4. Let’s go deep

Deep conditioners are a necessity after swimming in a pool since chlorine strips your hair of moisture. Shampoos neutralize the chlorine, but conditioners soften and replace the moisture that is now absent in your hair.

Any conditioner will do, but ones that have coconut oil are especially moisturizing.

Leave-in protein conditioners are another great choice but don’t use these on a regular basis. Your hair will go from dry to greasy in the blink of an eye. And who wants all of that nasty build-up of product in your luscious locks?

​5. Home remedies

Now that you know how to get chlorine out of hair, and how to avoid it from getting there to begin with, what about if the damage is already done? If your hair has turned green there are a few things you can try before going back to the hair salon.

Baking Soda

After washing your hair, try coating it with a paste made out of one-fourth to half of a cup of baking soda and water.

Let it sit for a while, then rinse, shampoo and condition. Repeat several times if necessary.

Baking soda

Image via: Pixabay


Saturate your hair with ketchup, then fold hair into tin foil and let it sit for about 30 minutes. Rinse, shampoo and condition.

Coca Cola

coca cola

Image via: Pixabay

Believe it or not, there are a million uses for Coke. From cleaning rust off of coins and tools to descaling a teapot to getting stains off of clothes.

The list is endless.

Try soaking and massaging your hair with the carbonated beverage, then rinse it out and shampoo and condition.


Crush around eight aspirin into a bowl and mix with a little bit of water to form a paste. Massage the mixture into your hair and let it sit for about 15 minutes. Afterward, rinse, shampoo, and condition.

​How to Get Chlorine Out of Hair: Swim On

There is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to enjoy a dip in the pool, worry-free, as long as you are equipped with how to get chlorine out of hair. Summer is about cooling off, relaxing, and shedding the stress.

So be sure to arm yourself with the best methods to keep your hair happy and healthy. Take the dive!

Do you have any tricks for how to remove chlorine out of hair? Let us know what they are below!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here