Dive hair, and I don’t care? Well, I do care, though I admit my favorite photos of me are post-dive, hair everywhere, and a big smile on my face. I know I have had a good day if I have dive hair. As I keep my hair short and follow the steps below, I may have “dive hair,” but I still keep it hydrated and healthy. What is the best hair care for scuba diving? Even Scuba Women with long hair can control dive hair with these best hair care tips.
Quick and easy scuba diving hair care tip number 1 – Saturate
Before diving into the salty ocean, saturate hair with fresh water. Hair is porous and, like your skin, needs to be hydrated. The salt in the sea sticks to hair and pulls moisture out, making it a dry, tangled, and brittle mess. Drenching hair with fresh water pre-dive will allow your hair’s cuticles to absorb moisture from the water and lessen dehydration caused by salt. If freshwater is available, also rinse between dives to remove excess salt. Take an extra water bottle on the boat just for your hair.
Quick and easy scuba diving hair care tip number 2 – Protect
Before diving, comb hair, wet it with fresh water, and apply a leave-in reef-safe conditioner to help prevent tangles and protect hair follicles. We want our locks to be lovely, healthy, and tangle-free without damaging our precious reefs. Any product we wear into the ocean must be biodegradable and reef safe. Stream2Sea has a great range of products, and their leave-in conditioner will keep your hair soft and healthy.
For thicker, longer hair, coconut oil may work better. Organic coconut oil is biodegradable but isn’t suitable for all hair types, so maybe test first. It is water-repellent and acts as an excellent barrier to salt. I use coconut oil as a hair mask for a post-dive treat, making my hair soft and manageable.
Reapply products between dives to keep hair protected and tangle-free. A little spray bottle can be a quick and easy way of reapplying, or simply squeeze conditioner into the palm of your hand and apply it to your hair. Consider using Stream2Sea in everyday life as well as diving. Remember, whatever we use in our showers eventually reaches our oceans. Chemical-free is good for both us and our waterways.
Quick & easy scuba diving hair care tip number 3 – Stop Movement
Any Scuba Woman diving with long hair needs to reduce hair movement. A banded ponytail is a simple and effective way of preventing dive hair. Easy to do, a banded ponytail will help prevent hair breakage. Create a high or low ponytail, leaving room for your mask strap. Secure the ponytail every few centimeters with nonelastic ponytail holders.
Made from sustainably sourced cotton and natural rubber, Mermaid Hair Ties are a functional and pretty way of securing a ponytail.
A ponytail can also be tied into a high bun. A braided ponytail will lessen movement even more. Make two ponytails to help hold your mask strap in place. Start the first ponytail at the crown of your head and the second about 10cm lower – the perfect strap holder. Keep the ponytail tight; a loose ponytail moves around during a dive, causing your mask strap to slip and your hair to knot. Remember to start with damp, conditioned hair.
With plastic-free hair ties, scrunchies, and headbands, Kooshoo offers style without compromise.
Interweaving hair into a French braid is ideal for Scuba Women with layered or long thick hair. A French braid keeps hair tucked in and in place. Wet hair with fresh water first, condition with a reef-safe conditioner, and braid while hair is still damp. A braid is an excellent way to keep hard-to-manage hair in place all day. Remember to rinse with fresh water at the end of the dive, condition, and use a wide tooth comb as the braid is undone.
Quick & easy scuba diving hair care tip number 4 Mask Strap Cover
As a Scuba Woman, I have pulled out my share of hair when removing my mask. Invest in an inexpensive neoprene mask strap cover to prevent the sticky silicone straps from catching your hair. I made a mask strap cover part of my dive gear early on, and my hair thanks me. A neoprene cover slides across the silicone back strap of the mask. Instead of sticking to your hair, the mask strap simply slides on and off. No more tangles. Many dive shops will have their logo on a mask strap cover – a nice souvenir of your favorite dive site or company.
Nudi Wear makes beautiful mask straps with marine designs.
Quick & easy scuba diving hair care tip number 5 Wear a Hood
A hood is an excellent option for keeping hair in place and stopping movement. Select a suitable hairstyle and secure it with a dive hood, swim cap, headband, or bandana. A hood will contain your hair, stop stray hairs from escaping, and keep you warm when diving in cooler waters.
Buffs, bandanas, and headbands are perfect for keeping hair back off your face and out of your eyes. A headband is an excellent solution for fringes, fine hair, or even hiding my grey hair.
Waterlust is a great small company making sun-safe hair masks and bandanas from recycled plastics. Easy to put on and take off, nature-inspired prints keep hair in place and out of your eyes. They also offer sun protection on the boat, as you can bring the bandana down to cover your head, neck, and face.
A bandana can be worn as a headband on the surface and then pulled down over long hair to keep it tidy during the dive. Wearing a bandana with one of the above hairstyles will keep your hair in place and prevent dive hair.
Head and neck buffs are multifunctional. They can cover your hair completely or just keep your fringe out of your eyes, and they are perfect for people with shorter hair.
Post-dive hair care
After each dive, rinse hair with fresh water. Slather with conditioner and use a wide-toothed comb or a wet detangling brush to remove knots. Gently work your way up from the bottom. I always deep condition my hair or use a hair mask if I have been diving frequently to counterbalance the damage caused by the sun, wind, and salt.
It’s Never Too Late – Take the Dive with Tanya – Helping Women Scuba Dive Confidently.
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