Don't Let Your Swim Sink Your Style: Caring For Wet Box Braids

Box braids are one of the most protective styles: very low maintenance and full of versatility for a woman on the go. However, it's when going for a workout or hitting the pool that many worry about how they are going to maintain that fresh look of the box braid, fearing they might fall. What maintenance is needed for box braids when working out or swimming? We will take a look at how to keep your box braids clean in the event that they get wet, so you can still rock your favorite style without feeling like it is getting ruined every time you sweat.
classic box braids

Understanding the Impact of Moisture on Box Braids

As we get deeper to look at how best to take care of the issue, it is first paramount to know just how the matter to do with moisture comes into play with respect to your box braids. When there is sweating or swimming, the braids get soaked and, in turn, make them heavy and may also get frizzy. That is to say, the swelling of the braiding hair is going to cause some moisture and, therefore, it loosens, hence giving way for some messiness and untidy appearance.

And your braids stay wet for too long; they can get some unpleasant smell or even mildew. This is especially when you live in a place with a humid atmosphere or in instances where the box braids are not well dried after one gets them wet.

To avoid smelling or having box braids that look damp, you should have a proper care routine for when they get wet.

Pre-Swim Preparation

One of the best ways to keep the impact of moisture at its lowest is preparation. Here are a few things you can do:

1. Use a Leave-In Conditioner: Apply a water-based, light leave-in conditioner to the braids before swimming. It will be able to keep the moisture you had in the hair, hence making it difficult for saltwater or chlorinated water to strip it.

2. Wear a Swim Cap: Have a swim cap on if you can, to just protect the exposure of the braids to water. Look for a large cap that will contain all of your braids without exerting much pressure on your hairline.

3. Protect Your Braids: If your braids are long, consider protecting them either by pulling back in a low ponytail or twisting around the base of the back to keep them gathered and not tangling.

These simple precautions can help protect your braids from the adverse effects of chlorine and salt water, thus making post-swim braids much easier.

swim with box braids

Post-Swim Care Routine

Some care is due to the wet braids after enjoying your swim or finishing your workout, so that they do not get damaged while retaining the hairdo. Here are all the steps in this process:

1. Rinse Your Braids: After swimming, rinse your braids with fresh water as soon as it is possible. This will help in removing any chlorine, salt, or sweat that may have been left in the hair.

2. Gjson Excess Water: Gently squeeze your braids to remove excess water with the help of your hands. Do not rub your braids with a towel; this may be one of the causes for them to rub against each other, causing the plaits to get frizzy or tangled.

3. Apply a moisturizing product: As one continues with the moisture content, while the braids are still wet, apply some kind of water-based moisturizer or braid spray to the braids to remain moist. It has to be applied through the length of the braid and not at the scalp to avoid the building up of residues.

4. Air dry your braids: Air dry your braids properly before you go ahead and style them. Do not use a blow dryer, or else it will present some heat that may be of harm to your braiding hair and the natural one underneath.

5. Style: Once the braids are dry, the braids are quite easy to style in various different manners. A light application of edge control gel or even lightweight oil is applied to the top of the head, in case some braids may be frizzy or not staying down.

This is a post-swim care routine that ensures your box braids hairstyles look just as fresh and on point post a dip in the pool or a sweaty workout.

long box braids wig

Maintaining Your Braids Between Swims

In addition to your post-swim care routine, there are a few things you can do to maintain your braids between swims:

Moisturize: Always ensure that the braids are duly moisturized with the use of water-based moisturizer or braid spray every few days. This will be particularly useful from becoming dry and frizzy, more so from chlorine and salt water.

Secure Your Braids during Sleep: Secure the hair by tying the braid wig with a silk or satin scarf to avoid friction and unnecessary tangling from bed fibers. Another alternative is resting the head on a silk or satin pillowcase.

Refresh Your Braids: If you noticed the braids being a bit fuzzy or loose, you can refresh them with just a light spritz of water or braid spray and then lightly smooth with your hands.

A braided wig to be considered in the case of a swimmer who has a constant time spent in salty water or a condition when the quality and neatness of the braids spoil to get too worn out because of constant moisture. So you could actually have the look of your box braids or boho braids without putting your natural hair through such a bashing experience of getting wet and dried all the time.


With box braids, swimming and working out do not have to mean sacrificing style. So, preparing your box braids for swimming, taking care of them post-swim, and maintaining between your swims shall help keep your style fresh and fabulous.

Keep in mind, you want to keep your hair moist, protected, and totally tangle- and frizz-free; a little more care and attention to detail, and your box braids will be ready to serve you in style wherever the active life is taking you.

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