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Why That Turquoise Hair? or Good Grief � Goldilocks Goin' Green!

Based on an article first appearing in AQUATICS INTERNATIONAL magazine, by the same author.

What's all this nonsense about green hair being caused by chlorine? This fable has been around nearly as long as the one about that water additive causing pool pee to turn red. But blondies' curls do turn green in chlorinated water you say� Well, we're here to tell you it has nothing to do with the chlorine. We know the offender, and its name is� copper.

Let's start by insisting that a short series of events must occur before hair, or anything else in the pool, can turn green. Water must be allowed to become aggressive (negative calcium-saturation-index numbers); it must dissolve some metallic copper, it must have sulfates in it, then � later � high pH conditions must prevail (values above pH 8.3) to precipitate the stuff that the water had previously dissolved. This last step can happen in the water itself, on the plaster or� in the hair!

Let's get a little critical here. The color in question cannot manifest itself without the aforementioned copper in the water, then in the hair � yet neither should be the case in a well-managed pool. If copper is present in the water, that's the pool operator's fault and the pool operator's problem. Copper simply shouldn't be in your pool. If it is, somebody got it there; neither make-up (city) or natural (well) water has copper in it, so we are told by water-plant engineers and geologists.

But liquid pool heater is an all-too-frequent part of swimming-pool water because of sloppy water management. Copper pipes (heaven forbid) and bronze impellers contribute along with the heater's internal elements, as aggressive water will stop at nothing until it's satisfied. Since pH is by far the most influential variable in the CSI, one could safely say that temporary low pH � caused by acidic sanitizers or by excessive pH correction with acid � is the primary "cause" for this aggressive water. Such water achieves this fulfillment by taking on every metal and mineral in its environment, and that includes generous portions of the pool-system's copper.

Meanwhile, everybody's hair absorbs this copper-bearing water. Yes, the black-, brown- and red-headed kids as well as the blondies take on this still invisible dissolved metal. Then the second influence finishes the job: they shampoo. As all normal shampoos have high pH values, the dreaded precipitation occurs. Visible copper (oxide or sulfate) appears, providing that lovely shade of turquoise.

But only the blond-haired swimmers look like Heavy Metal groupies, since there is little pigment there to mask the green effect. And if the hair has been bleached blond you can expect near' twice the effect, as damaged or stripped hair has much more absorbency to hold the copper-bearing water.

What can the swimmers do? Rinsing the hair thoroughly and towel drying rather than letting the water evaporate with contents left behind seems most effective. Shampooing with "swimmers' shampoo" helps because it has an intentionally lowered pH to avoid precipitation. The best plan, of course, is to swim in, or operate, a well-managed pool with perfect, copper-free water.

If your swimmers are already affected, you can assure them that the color will fade after multiple shampoos. In the meantime, you may want to suggest that they join a punk-rock band.


Most newer Swimming Pools have very little copper parts in their mechanical systems. The most likely path for the Copper to get into the pool is through city water. Water evaporates, but copper doesn't. Over time, the level of copper continues to rise, as more and more fill water is added to the pool. Copper and Chlorine have a positive charge. Your skin and hair have a negative charge. The Copper bonds with the hair, and stains it. You might ask why hair is not dyed to a Copper color. When hair dries, the Copper is precipitated out as a Copper Sulfide.




Overexpose in the sulfate area. Swimming pool has a mixture of chlorine and chemical substances that's why your hair color will fade then turn to other color.

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โˆ™ 2011-03-16 02:00:27
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Q: What causes blonde hair to turn green after swimming?
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Related questions

What chemical is known to make blonde hair turn green?

chlorine it is known to turn light blonde hair a greenish color. so if your a blonde always wash your hair after swimming in a chlorine pool.

What are the causes of blonde hair having a green tint?

Hard metals in the water.

Does swimming in chlorine lighten blond hair?

Nope it turns it green. Trust me im brunette but I've got a blonde friend and she says her hair gets tinted green

Is blonde hair and green eyes rare?

No, it isn't. I know plenty of people with blonde hair green eyes. Infact, it's more common to have blonde hair and green eyes than brown hair green eyes.

How do you get the green out of blonde hair after swimming?

This may sound disgusting at first, but I have found that leaving ketchup in your hair takes out the green. Trust me, I know it sounds strange but it really works! Hope this helped:)

How long does green hair last from swimming in a pool?

Not aware that a swimming pool had green hair.

Will you hair go green if you go swimming after you dye your hair?

The chlorine in the swimming pool caused your hair to turn green

Will sun-in turn your hair green when you swim?

Sun-In will not turn your hair green if you swim. The reason that hair will turn green when swimming is due to the chemicals in the pool. When your hair is damaged, the chemicals soak in and that is what causes the color change.

What color eyes and hair will a baby most likely have if the father has blonde hair blue eyes and the mother has brown hair green eyes?

blonde hair and green eyes

If I have quite dark brown hair and am thinking of having blonde highlights with a blonde fringe will chlorine from a pool turn it green?

the answer to your question is yes. i know from expierience lol i dyed my hair blonde and went swimming about 2 weeks later and now i have green hair lol. it doesnt look very nice but i would advise against it because it is really noticable. it wont go dark green it will go light green. hope this helped! Try using Ion Swimmer's Conditioner and work it through hair prior to swimming. This helps protect against sun damage, prevents green brittle hair, and helps correct damage from Chlorine.

What colour of eyes and hair will the baby have if the mother has green eyes and blonde hair and the father has green eyes and brown hair?

Most likely the baby will have blue+green mix and you wont know until the baby grows hair it could be any colour but by Mother has blonde hair green eyes and father has brown hair green eyes the baby would probably have dark blonde hair

What hair color matches green eyes?

brunet hair and blonde hair

What color is your hair if you dye it green?

If your hair is brown it will be forest green if your hair is blonde it will be light green if your hairis dirty blond it will be regular green

What causes hair to turn green when you dye it?

Its often because you went from a dark color to a light color. Also, it can be blonde hair from chlorine in the pool, or a bad dye.

What are the disadvantages of chlorine?

it will turn your blonde hair green

Why would a salt water swimming pool turn blonde hair green?

It is not the salt water pool or the salt water that is turning your hair green. It is a poorly maintained pool with a chemical imbalance - pH and total alkalinity out of required parameters.

What causes hair to turn green from swimming pools?

The reason why your hair turns green in your swimming pool is due to the fact that your pH in your water is off. Adjust the pH by adding the proper amount. Its a myth that chlorine causes this. Chlorine is the main ingredient in a lot of cleaning solutions such as bleach. When you get your hair bleached a lot of the hair products that are used for this lists the main ingredient as bleach which, again, has bleach in it.

How can you turn your hair green?

If your hair is blonde, you can buy green hair dye and dye it according to directions or get it done at a professional salon. If your hair is darker, then you have to bleach it then add color to your hair. This can also be done at a salon. If you are asking for like a way to turn your hair green by accident, if your hair is blonde and you leave chlorine in it too long, eventually your hair reacts and it turns green.

What causes violet color when you dye your hair blonde?


What eye and hair colour did Princess Diana have?

Had green blue eyes and blonde hair

Will your hair turn green if you go to a water park?

your hair shouldn't turn green unless you bleached it then dyed it blonde

If mother has brown hair and brown eyes and father is blonde hair and blue eyes what is the possibilityof the child having green eyes and blonde hair?

very small...

Is salt water pools good for you?

Yes, they are much better than chlorine. I would be cautious about entering a salt-water pool if you have dyed your hair blonde, I've experienced my hair turning green after swimming in a pool of salt water. It's basically like swimming in the ocean.

Would someone with light green eyes pale skin and naturally dirty blonde hair look good with platinum blonde hair?


Does blonde hair go green when egg goes on it?

no. egg is good for all hair types