Effective Tips for Fixing and Preventing Hair Turning Green in Pools

Hair turning green is a common problem among swimmers. The chlorine in the pool water reacts with the natural compounds in hair dye to remove the color, leaving a green hue. Read on for a complete guide to fixing and preventing green hair.

If you found your hair turning green in pool after swimming, don’t fret. The answer is simple. There are a few reasons why hair can turn green, and they’re all easy to fix.

This article provides you with information on why your hair can turn green in a pool and instructions on fixing and preventing this issue.

What Makes Your Hair Turning Green From a Pool?

One reason a person’s hair may turn green in a swimming pool is not because of chlorine but because of copper. 

girl with green hair swimming

Have you ever seen an old penny that’s starting to have a greenish tint? This is because when a thing made of copper oxidizes over time, the oxygen in the air straps with the copper and turns the element into green. Also, you’re familiar with the Statue of Liberty, right?

Well, it wasn’t always the color green. The statue’s exterior is copper, and because of years of exposure to seawater and other elements, the copper oxidized, resulting in the statue’s famous green color.

This process also happens when copper is available in your pool water. Though the only difference is this process occurs swiftly than in hard metals. So when the copper oxidizes in your pool, it can turn certain things like the pool’s walls, the surfaces of the pool, and your hair green. 

To prevent getting green hair from your pool, we need to ensure that you don’t overload your pool with shock and that you don’t let that oxidized copper stick to your hair. Here’s what you can do:

How to Avoid Having Green Hair After Swimming in a Pool

Balance Your Pool Water

Balance Pool Water

This is one of the most significant actions in preventing green hair tint (and numerous other problems). Test your pool’s water regularly to determine what chemicals and metals are present and at what concentrations.

You will need to have a testing kit that measures copper and other easily oxidized hard metals in your pool water. After all, there could be a chemical imbalance in your water, resulting in excess copper. If that’s the case, having green hair may be the least of your health worries.

Remember, balancing various chemicals in your pool water is not just beneficial to your hair. It assures that your pool doesn’t turn green and that it will remain healthy and safe for swimming. 

Use a Metal Sequestrant

The copper levels will be reduced with the use of a metal sequestrant. However, this metal remover doesn’t eliminate metal properties from water but simply binds with copper, iron, manganese and prevents oxidation. This gives your pool water the chance to recover and revitalize. 

Make Use of Copper-Free Algaecide

If your pool becomes infested with algae and you decide to use an algaecide during the treatment procedure, ensure that the algaecide does not contain copper as an active component. Check out these tips to help you choose the best algaecides for your pool.

But what if you’re planning to have a dip in someone else’s pool? Probably a public pool? You don’t have control over the water or chemicals that they use in that area.

In that case, you’ll need to take precautions to keep your hair safe. Here’s what you can do:

Wet Your Hair Before Dipping in the Water

girl wet hair before swimming

Instead of plunging into the pool right away, consider soaking your hair in the water first. Hair drenched in normal chlorine-free water absorbs less chlorinated pool water. This method is useful, but it is most effective when combined with some of our other suggestions!

Leave-in Conditioner Comes Very Helpful

Leave-in Conditioner

Leave in conditioner will coat your hair shaft and make it more difficult for copper to attach itself to your hair.

Immediately Wash Your Hair After Swimming

Lady Washing Her Hair

In general, the longer you let oxidized copper water stay in your hair, the greater the likelihood that your hair will become green. So, as soon as you come out of the water, wash your hair immediately. Don’t wait for it to dry first.

Use a Swimming Cap

Lady wearing a swimming cap

If you plan to use a swimming cap on your hair, make sure that it covers most of your hair, including the ends, so you don’t end up with green tips. Swim caps aren’t the most attractive pool gear, but they are excellent at protecting your hair, especially if your hair is sensitive to damage or swimming in an area with high chlorine levels.

Learn how combined, total and free chlorine differ and how they are similar.

How to Get Rid of Green Hair

If you haven’t been able to keep the green hair color caused by your pool’s chlorine at bay, don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Check out our list of the most effective methods for removing green from your hair and restoring its original color:

Apply Lemon Juice to Your Hair

Apply Lemon Juice to Hair

Citric acid is frequently employed in the cleaning of copper pots and other culinary items. It removes oxidation from the surfaces and makes them shiny again. Rinsing your hair with lemon juice can achieve the same results.

Allow the lemon juice to sit in your hair for approximately 5 minutes before rinsing thoroughly with water. However, while the acidity will help break down the green tint, it may also cause your hair to dry. Therefore, it’s best to deep condition your hair after the process to avoid drying or damaging your hair.

Use Apple Cider Vinegar to Rinse Your Hair

Wash Hair with Apple Cider Vinegar

Acetic acid, commonly found in vinegar, is another chemical that is used to clean copper. Make a thorough rinse of your hair, and you may see some green color tint come out.

Simply wash your hair with apple cider vinegar after coming out of the pool, then apply shampoo and conditioner. This should help fixing the hair turning green issue in no time.

Try Out Using Ketchup or Tomato Juice

Coat Hair with Tomato Juice

Ketchup is a double-whammy for oxidized copper in your hair because it includes both vinegar and acetic acid.

Step into the shower with a full glass of tomato juice, tomato soup, or even ketchup if you like a thicker consistency, and thoroughly coat your hair. Soak your hair for about 5 minutes before you rinse off. The green tint should be washed away while you’re rinsing your hair.

Use Baking Soda Paste

Massage Hair with Baking Soda Paste

Have some baking soda in hand? Make a soda paste out of 1/4 to 1/2 cups of baking soda and water in a mixing bowl. Massage it in your hair and make sure that you have applied the paste on every strand.

Thoroughly rinse the baking soda paste out and then shampoo and condition your hair. Baking soda may not be as powerful as acids, but if you repeat the process more than once, this can certainly do the trick and fix the hair turning green issue.

Try Lemon Kool-Aid or Aspirin as a Rinse

Rinse Hair with Aspirin

If you have decided to give aspirin a try, crush about 6-8 pills in a basin and mix with warm water. Rinse your hair with the water-based aspirin and let it sit in for about 15-20 minutes. If you’re using lemon Kool-Aid, mix it with warm water and apply it to the green areas of your hair.

Allow for 3-5 minutes of resting time. Again, regardless of whatever method you choose, shampoo and condition your hair after the process. 

If you prefer not to use at-home treatments, there is a professional shampoo available that you can use instead. It helps to eliminate the green color by removing chlorine and copper from your hair.

With these simple suggestions and proven techniques, you’ll get the original hair color in no time. And with our preventive tips, you will never get green hair again. Now, have a good time in the pool. Happy Swimming!

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About the author

Brian Anderson

The rather dry pool world out there is in need of some passion to make it shine. With the help of my son Ruben and his wife Maria our mission is to help you create the favorite spot of your house - your pool.

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