Is Saltwater Bad For Your Hair? Hair Care Tips For Surfers And Ocean Lovers

The golden highlights, the effortless curls – there’s a reason so many of us chase that ‘beach hair’ look. But is all that saltwater bad for your hair? Just ask any surfer, diver or ocean enthusiast and they’ll tell you the answer is yes. Thankfully, there are some simple ways you can protect your hair so you can keep doing the sports you love (without all the split ends). 

How To Protect Hair From Salt Water And Sun

It’s true what they say – you can have too much of a good thing. And turns out, salt water is one of them. You see, those luscious, mermaid locks do come at a cost. Saltwater can dry out your hair and strip it of its natural oils, which causes it to become brittle and tangled. This can lead to split ends and breakage (and yet another sheepish trip to the hairdresser). 

But just like you care for your skin at the beach with sunscreen and moisturiser, we can care for our hair similarly… Let’s dive into the ultimate surfer hair care routine…

Hair Care Tips For Summer


Coconut Oil Is Your Best Friend

Think of coconut oil as a natural conditioner. When you apply it to your hair before hitting the water, it’ll act as a barrier between your hair and the salt. It’s also rich in vitamins, minerals and fatty acids – which work to nourish and protect your hair from the elements. Coconut oil helps to prevent protein loss – and one study revealed that it’s more effective than sunflower and mineral oils. Try adding a teaspoon halfway down your locks to the tips of your hair. Leave it to soak for 10 minutes before washing with natural hair care. 

Wet Your Hair Before and After Hitting The Water

Think of your hair like a sponge. When it gets wet, it will soak it all up. So, by wetting your hair with fresh water before you head out for a surf, it will reach its capacity of absorption – which means it will absorb less of the harmful saltwater. Carry an extra water bottle with you so you can drench your hair before hitting the water. Better still, rinse your hair straight after a surf or ocean activity to wash the saltwater away and stop it from becoming dried out. 

Try A Hair Mask Or Treatment

Speak to any surfer or ocean aficionado, and we’ll bet that they regularly treat themselves to a hair mask or treatment. Here at Hemp Collective, we believe that nature already has everything we need to achieve healthy, shiny hair. You can find some brilliant DIY hair mask recipes online… look for ingredients like avocado, egg yolk, apple cider vinegar, coconut oil and jojoba oil.  Yep – ingredients that nourish our insides can work wonders on the outside, too. 

Switch To A Natural Shampoo And Conditioner

Let’s take a guess – one of the first things you want to do after hitting the water is jump in the shower for some after beach hair care. But did you know that many of the hair care products on our supermarket shelves are packed full of chemicals? Sure, they’ll do a great job of cleaning your hair. But the artificial dies, scents, parabens and sulfates can dry out your hair (yep – this will just add to the saltwater damage). By switching to a natural shampoo and conditioner, you will not only clean your hair, but you will also nourish and restore it too. 

Try using Hemp Collective’s Conditioner before you hit the surf as well as when you finish.

Looking For The Best Hair Products For Saltwater?


Hemp Collective 100% natural haircare range is lovingly made in Byron Bay, with surfers and ocean lovers in mind. We use a range of powerful, natural ingredients that your hair will love. You’ll find… 

  • Hemp Seed Oil 

Hemp is packed with the perfect ratio of Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. It prevents hair breakage, dryness and too much saltwater being absorbed by your hair! It’s also rich in Vitamin A and E which helps to nourish your locks.

  • Coconut Oil 

We couldn’t make natural hair care without using coconut oil! Yep, that power-packed ingredient we mentioned earlier is a key ingredient in our range. So, even if you don’t get time to soak your ends in coconut oil, you’ll reap the benefits every time you wash your hair. 

  • Shea Butter 

Jam-packed with plant-based fatty acids and other goodies – it’s a must-have ingredient to repair damage and nourish the hair and scalp. 

  • Cocoa Butter

Helping the hair feel shinier and healthier, cocoa butter locks in moisture to repair damage and strengthens your hair (in other words, a vital ingredient). 

To discover our full list of ingredients, check out our luxurious Australian made, chemical-free haircare range. With the right ingredients on your locks, you can spend your summer in the ocean (and avoid the salty, tangled and damaged aftermath). Yep – you can have your cake and eat it too. 

Try our hemp, lavender and rose geranium shampoo bar for a floral fiesta, or our orange, grapefruit and lemon shampoo bar for a citrus explosion. And then pair this with one of our natural conditioner bars to leave your hair feeling soft and silky smooth. 

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