Nothing compares to the experience of exploring the world beneath the waves. You live for the moments you get to spend in the water, but as much as scuba diving invigorates your mind and your soul, it can be rough on your skin.
Long exposure to the sun and dehydration from saltwater takes a toll on your skin and hair, leaving you looking and feeling older than you actually are. Don’t let skin problems keep you from doing what you love. Follow these skincare tips to keep your skin protected before, during, and after your next dive.
Prepare Before You Dive
Proper skin protection is essential, even if you’re going to be spending most of your time underwater. UV rays can’t penetrate water to the depths you’ll likely be diving, but you’ll need protection for the time you spend on the boat traveling to your diving location. Apply broad-spectrum sunscreen SPF 30 or higher to your face, neck, and hands about 30 minutes before you head out – anything that isn’t covered by your scuba gear.
Pull your hair back in a braid or ponytail, making sure to leave room for your mask strap so you can easily get it on and off. To protect your hair from the drying effects of saltwater, consider coating it with coconut oil. This will also help to prevent tangles, making it easier to wash after your dive.
Care for Your Skin on the Boat
When you reach the location for your dive, there are a few quick things you should do before hopping into the water. Wet your hair with fresh water before putting on your mask. This will help it from becoming too brittle when exposed to saltwater. Check and double-check your gear as well to make sure you’re properly covered and protected.
Each time you resurface after a dive, take a few minutes to rest in the shade. Give your skin a quick rinse to remove saltwater and reapply sunscreen before you head back down. Don’t forget to hydrate as well and apply lip balm if needed to rehydrate your lips.
Post-Diving Skin Care Tips
Most of your post-diving routine will have to wait until you’re back on land, but you can still do a quick rinse with fresh water and reapply sunscreen and lip balm for the trip back. Be sure to rinse and clean your mask to remove bacteria so it’s fresh and clean for your next dive.
Once you’ve showered, apply lotion to repair your skin’s moisture barrier and use aloe vera on any areas of sunburn. With your skin still damp, apply alcohol-free toner followed by your preferred serum, moisturizer, anti-aging or acne cream. For added hydration and skin repair, try a hydrating face mask.
Though the sun, saltwater, and dry air will never keep you from diving, the effects on your skin and hair will eventually become noticeable. These simple tips will help you take better care of yourself before and during each dive, while also helping your skin recover and rehydrate when you’re back on land.