Swim caps serve three main purposes: to improve your swimming performance by cutting down on drag, to keep pools clean from human hair and hair products and to keep your hair from getting damaged by chlorine. You want a cap that will keep your hair dry, because chlorinated water contains chemicals that can leech moisture from it and can even turn your hair green.
Swim caps are made of lycra, latex or silicone. Opt for silicone if keeping your hair dry is your first priority. They can be a bit more expensive, but waterproof silicone will maintain a firm barrier between your hair and the water. And unlike thin latex caps, silicone caps are thicker, create less drag in the pool and will not tear as easily. For a soft, comfortable silicone cap, try TYR's Silicone Cap.
A Good Fit
Try on a swim cap before buying it. The cap should be snug around your head from the base of your neck to the middle of your forehead. While most caps are one size fits all, it's worth trying them on to guarantee the best fit. For petite swimmers, try Speedo's Junior Silicone Cap.
Keep your head warm and dry with a neoprene rubber cap. Neoprene caps are the most expensive, but they are also the thickest. Most neoprene caps come with a chin strap to keep the cap in place. This is the best cap for outdoor swims in cold open water. For extra protection, throw on an inexpensive latex cap first. Blue Seventy's, Neoprene Swim Cap comes in two sizes.
Article Written By Roxana Wells
Roxana Wells is a teacher and writer living in South Korea. She enjoys writing about education, travel and food. Her work can be found in many publications, including "Italian American Magazine," "San Diego Family" and "The Ogden Independent." Wells holds a Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies from the University of Richmond and a master's degree in elementary education from Utah State University.