Getting rid of green hair from pool water - Sutro, Inc

Getting rid of green hair from pool water

Ah yes, the dreaded green hair after swimming that can haunt blonder swimmers. A lot of new pool owners have “dyed” swimmer’s hair green unintentionally because they didn’t understand pool chemistry

How can you get green hair from pool water?

Getting green hair from pool water is often blamed on chlorine, but there is a little more to the story. Green hair is actually caused by a chemical reaction between copper, chlorine, and protein. When the copper concentration in your water is > 2ppm the copper ions can be oxidized when a large dose of chlorine is added. 

The ions will then be free to bond with hair proteins and that’s what causes your hair to turn green. Not only can copper turn your hair green, it can also result in green water and even surface staining

If this happens then the metal can be sequestered or totally removed by using a metal staining treatment. Now that you know why your hair turned green, let’s look at how to fix it!  

How to get rid of green hair

There are several cures for getting rid of green hair, but of course the best one is to prevent it from happening in the first place! 

The key to this is understanding the different types of algaecides and better yet preventing the need to use an algaecide in the first place. 

This is where Sutro pool ph monitor can help you by checking your pH,
alkalinity, and chlorine levels 3 times per day
and recommending adjustments when needed so you never have to worry about algae.

If you are here to learn how to fix or prevent the risk of green hair from pool water, then take a look at these tips:

Get your hair wet

If you wet your hair before getting into the pool, it helps minimize the opportunity for copper ions to attach. Even better, is to apply a leave-in conditioner before swimming and that will help prevent the ions from attaching.

Shower right after swimming and use shampoo that’s formulated for swimmers to thoroughly clean your hair.

V8/Tomato Juice

Coating your hair with tomato juice (or vegetable juices containing tomatoes ) will help release the copper ions. Apply and let sit for 5-10 minutes and then wash and add conditioner.


Ketchup also has acidic tomato juice and can help.  Wrap your hair in aluminum foil or put a swim cap on and let the ketchup sit for about 30 minutes and then shampoo and condition.

Lemon juice

Coat your hair with lemon juice and let it sit for 5-10 minutes and then shampoo and condition as normal.

Getting your green hair back to blonde was a lot of unnecessary work! It’s much easier to keep your water properly balanced and that’s where Sutro has your back. 

Back to blog