5 Best Shampoo for Swimmers To Remove Chlorine in 2017

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Chlorine damaged hair.

You know you need to get a shampoo for swimmers to deal with it.

But, there’s a lot of options out there in 2017 you can choose.

So I have put together a list of attributes from 5 of the top selling swim shampoos (based on estimated Amazon sales) from the summer of 2017.

This list does not include clarifying shampoos like Paul Mitchell’s Clarifying Shampoo. I don’t recommend you use a clarifying shampoo to regularly treat chlorine build-up. Clarifying shampoos will almost always be too harsh on your hair with regular use.

Our Top 5 Shampoos for Swimmers

Ultra Swim Shampoo, Malibu C Swimmers Wellness Shampoo, Babo Botanicals Swim & Sport Shampoo, TriSwim Shampoo, Solpri Swim & Sport Shampoo and Body Wash

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Solpri Ultra Swim Tri Swim Malibu C Babo Botanicals
Chemical or Physical
Removal of Chlorine
Chemical Chemical Chemical Chemical Physical
Ingredient Used To
Remove Chlorine
Vitamin C
(Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate)
Sodium Thiosulphate Sodium Thiosulphate Vitamin C
(Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate)
Corn Derived Chelator
Doubles as Body Wash Yes No No No Yes
Sulfate Free Yes No No Yes Yes
Paraben Free Yes No Yes Yes Yes
Dye Free Yes No No Yes Yes
Fragrance Free Yes No No No No
Standard Bottle Size 8 Fl Oz 8 Fl Oz 8 Fl Oz 9 Fl Oz 8 Fl Oz
EWG Rating

(1 Least Risk to 9 Most Risk)

2 6 8 5 2

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How Each Swim Shampoo Removes Chlorine:

The reason chlorine gets so stuck in your hair is that is binds to proteins in your hair (and skin).

It’s the same thing that makes chlorine so effective and cleaning your pool. It binds to organic elements (bacteria, and you are both in this category) and doesn’t want to let go.

There are three different ways our 5 swim shampoos remove chlorine, one that tries to remove it physically like any normal shampoo would and the other 4 that try to break chlorine down chemically.

Corn Derived Chelator: Babo Botanicals uses a “chelator” to try and remove chlorine from your hair. In short, a chelator is meant to grab onto chlorine and pull it off your hair. Although most shampoos don’t use a chelator for chlorine, this is similar to the way most regular shampoos clean your hair. By binding to “dirt” and going down the drain when you rinse your hair.

Sodium Thiosulphate: This is the classic old school ingredient to try and break down chlorine. It’s cheap and relatively effective. The potential downsides are that it can irritate your skin. Sulfates are small enough molecules that they can penetrate your skin and make it itch even after chlorine is gone. Sulfates do not bother everyone, but is a potential issue for some people.

Ultra Swim and Tri Swim both use Sodium Thiosulphate to remove chlorine from your hair.

Vitamin C: The last option our group of shampoos can use is Vitamin C. Vitamin C has shown to be highly effective at breaking down chlorine. Additionally it has the potential to positively affect your skin through absorption for any Vitamin C that is left over. Both Malibu C and Solpri use a stable form of Vitamin C. Malibu doesn’t list the amount of Vitamin C on their package (which may mean it isn’t a very high amount), but we do include that we use 15% Vitamin C in our formula. Which is on the top end of safe dermal (skin) application.

Free of Potentially Irritating Ingredients:

There’s a growing list of cosmetic ingredients that can make your skin irritated.

This is a very personal situation since everyone’s skin reacts a bit differently. Whereas one person may be able to wear heavily perfumed lotion, you may have skin that breaks out at the slightest inclusion of fragrance.

These 4 ingredients at one time or another have been considered a potential irritant to skin.

  • Sulfates
  • Parabens
  • Dyes
  • Fragrances

Environmental Working Group (EWG) Rating:

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is a 3rd party that accumulates data on consumer products, including their Skin Deep Database. They are not associated with any company whose products or ingredients are listed in their database.

The Skin Deep Database is a cosmetics database that tries to establish how potentially safe or harmful any given product is for you.

In real terms this often relates to two major things:

  • How potentially irritating to your skin the product can be
  • Potential long term negative effects of a product

The amount of data available for an ingredient can change. Many of the newer ingredients, like much of the ones used in Solpri or Babo’s formulas, don’t have a ton of information on them yet. This is partially because using more plant-derived and essential oil type ingredients don’t have as long a history as their more lab-driven counterparts.

The EWG rating shouldn’t ever be taken as an end-all be-all decision on a product.

However, it does help you begin to understand why certain ingredients are included in your shampoo.

Ratings are given on a scale from 1 to 9. 

  • 1 and 2 are considered low risk.
  • 3-6 Are considered medium risk.
  • 7-9 Are considered high risk.

Full Ingredient Lists:

To take the best care of your hair, ingredients matter.

Reading and understanding at least a moderate amount of the ingredient label is important.

It can be a deep rabbit hole to go down into what’s good and what isn’t. You have to make a decision for yourself on what that means to you.

We try to base our ideas on scientific studies and readily available data so what we do is backed up with facts.

Here’s the full ingredient lists for our 5 shampoos for swimmers

(Full Ingredient Lists Considered up to date as of August 2017)

Solpri Swim Shampoo & Body Wash Ingredients:

Aqua (Water), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Decyl Glucoside, Cocamidopropyl Hydroxysultaine, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Dimethyl Sulfone (MSM), Cocamide MIPA, Olea Europaea Fruit Oil (Organic Olive), Rosa Canina Seed Oil (Organic Rosehip Seed), Borago Officinalis Oil (Borage), Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Extract (Orange Peel), Origanum Vulgare Extract (Oregano), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Melaleuca Alternifolia Oil (Tea Tree Essential Oil), Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract (Organic Aloe), Centella Asiatica Extract (Organic Gotu Kola), Equisetum Arvense Extract (Horsetail), Taraxacum Officinale Extract (Dandelion), Geranium Maculatum Extract (Wild Geranium), Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Disodium Lauryl Sulfosuccinate, (2s)-2-Amino-5-guanidinopentanoic Acid, Acrylates/C10-30 Alkyl Acrylate Crosspolymer, Phenoxyethanol, Ethylhexylglycerin

Choosing a swim shampoo will depend on a variety of factors and personal preferences. This post is here only to educate you as a buyer on the differences between your available options. We believe each product has their place and you will hopefully have an easier time choosing which is best for you.

Ultra Swim Shampoo Ingredients:

Water, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Urea, Sodium Lauroamphoacetate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Polysorbate 20, Sodium Thiosulfate, Coco-Glucoside, Glyceryl Oleate, Propylene Glycol, Diazolidinyl Urea, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Sodium Bicarbonate, Tocopheryl Acetate, Glycerin, Disodium EDTA, Polyquaternium-10, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Fragrance, Citric Acid, Ext. Violet 2 (309-002).

TriSwim Shampoo Ingredients:

Aloe Vera (Aloe Barbadensis) Leaf Juice (Organic Aloe Vera), Water (Aqua), Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Disodium Cocoamphodiacetate, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Sodium Chloride, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E) (Vitamin E Acetate), Retinyl Acetate (Vitamin A) (Vitamin A Palimtate), Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Nasturtium Officinale (Watercress) Extract, Chamomilla Recutita (Matricaria) Flower Extract (Matricaria), Magnesium Sulfate, Fragrance (Parfum), Sodium Thiosulfate, DMDM Hydantoin, Citric Acid, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Sodium Borate, Trisodium EDTA, Tetrasodium EDTA, Disodium EDTA, Yellow 5 Lake (CI 19140), Urea, Red 33 (CI 17200) (CI 17200), Blue 1 Lake (CI 42090) (CI 42090)

Malibu C Swimmer’s Wellness Shampoo Ingredients:

Water/Aqua/Eau, Sodium C 14-16 Olefin Sulfonate, Cocamide DIPA, Disodium Laureth Sulfosuccinate, Butylene Glycol, Glycerin, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, Disodium EDTA, Sodium Lauryl Sulfoacetate, Polyquaternium 10, PEG-16 Macadamia Glycerides, Panthenol, Linum Usitatissimum Seed Extract, Hydrolyzed Rice Protein, Sodium Gluconate, Fragrance/Parfum, Linalool , Glucose, Citric Acid, Benzyl Benzoate, Limonene, Phenoxyethanol, Potassium Sorbate.

Babo Botanicals Swim & Sport Shampoo Ingredients:

Organic Aloe (Aloe Babadensis) Leaf Juice*, Purified Water (Aqua), Sodium Laurylglucosides Hydroxypropyl Sulfonate, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, Lauryl Glucosides Betaine Crosspolymer, Vegetable Glycerine, Polyquaternium 80, Hydrolyzed Corn Starch, Glucono Delta Lactone, Linseed (Linum Usitatissimum) Seed Extract, Polyquaternium 10, Cucumber (Cucumis Sativus) Extract, Nutri-Soothe ΠComplex [Vegetable Glycerin, Chamomile (Anthemis Nobilis) Flower Extract*, Calendula (Calendula Officinalis) Flower Extract*, Meadowsweet (Spiraea Ulmaria) Flower Extract*, Wildcrafted Watercress (Nasturtium Officinale) Leaf Extract, Kudzu (Pueraria Lobata) Root Extract*], Potassium Sorbate, Petitgrain (Citrus Sinensis) Oil, Mandarin (Citrus Reticula) Oil, Geranium (Pelargonium Graveolens) Oil, Chlorophyl. *Certified Organic Ingredients

Where to Buy:

All 5 products are available on Amazon as well as through their respective websites. You can check out Solpri Swim Shampoo & Body Wash here in our store.

Legal Disclaimer: Solpri LLC is the owner of this post and producer of Solpri Swim Shampoo & Body Wash. We have no affiliation with Chattem Inc. (Owners of Ultraswim), SBR Sports Inc. (Owners of TriSwim), Malibu Wellness Inc, or Babo Botanicals LLC. Each company is the owner of their respective trademarks.

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