How Chlorine Affects our Skin

The providers at Greater Miami Skin and Laser Center in the community of Miami Beach, Florida ensure patients of the community are well-educated on how to care for their skin. With our doctors, patients can also ask questions about how to improve the health of their skin. During the warm summer months, many patients spend extensive time at their local pool—but is chlorine bad for your skin?

Why is chlorine used?

First, it’s essential to understand the purpose of chlorine. In personal and public swimming pools, chlorine is a chemical that is used to sanitize the water. It works by eliminating organic matter, inhibits algae growth, clarify the water, and kill unwanted microbes. In doing so, it can make public pools safer to swim in. However, this chemical can also be irritating to the skin.

What effects does chlorine have on the skin?

Chlorine and its byproducts can impact the outer layer of human skin in a number of ways. The more common issues seen include:

  • Dry skin
  • Irritation and rash
  • Chemical burns
  • Blisters/hives

In addition, patients who have sensitive skin or preexisting conditions such as dermatitis, eczema, or psoriasis may experience a worsening of their symptoms with chlorine exposure. This is due to the inflammation that can be caused by hypochloric acid. Patients with these conditions may experience rashes, scaling, redness, pain, and itching of the skin after exposure.

Ways to reduce chlorine exposure on the skin

  • Apply vitamin C to neutralize chlorine and its byproducts on the skin
  • Shower immediately after swimming to remove chlorine residues
  • Moisturize the skin after rinsing to reduce the risk of irritation
  • Monitor the chemical balance in personal swimming areas and adjust accordingly to keep levels within an ideal range

Learn more about caring for the skin during the summer months

At Greater Miami Skin and Laser Center, our providers are here to help patients in achieving beautiful, healthy skin. If you are troubled by chlorine exposure and are looking to care for your skin against these harsh chemicals, please call our team to make an appointment. Our dermatological providers offer recommendations and skincare products that can keep you swimming! Call (305) 532-4478 and schedule an appointment at our office.

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