Sun Protection Swimwear for Kids Who Swim in Chlorinated Pool  

by Pool Builders on 07-02-2011 in Articles

Why Buy Sun Protective Swimwear for Kids?

Buying swimwear for your children should be like purchasing insurance against cancer of the skin. Start educating your children from young about sun protection and what damage the sun's radiation can do. Fortunately these days, there is a myriad of sun protective swimwear in the market to choose from. What is important is that the swimwear should have an ultraviolet protection rating of 50+, or UPF50+. This is the highest rating for garments today and blocks 98 percent of ultraviolet radiation from the skin.

What Chlorine Does to Swimsuits

In places where swimming is generally done in heavily chlorinated swimming pools, parents find that the child could go through 2 to 3 suits a year, depending on how frequently the child goes swimming. Occasionally children are seen wearing sun protective rash suits that have stretched beyond the original size. This is not a good scenario as it is an indication that the suit has lost its elasticity and its sun protective properties.

Chlorine in swimming pools and hot tubs attack lycra, which is a key component in most swimsuit fabric. And when this happens, the UPF 50+ sun protection rapidly decreases. Other cosmetic aspects such as colour and fit also deteriorate with the breakdown of lycra and you end up with a swimsuit that looks baggy and faded.

To lengthen the life of the swimsuit, parents should try to use plenty of fresh water to rinse out the chlorine in the garment as soon as the child is out of the suit. Too often, the swimsuit is wrapped up in a towel and left in the car boot until the family reaches home. Repeating this kind of treatment to the sun protective swimsuit will accelerate the breakdown of lycra and therefore the sun protection property it originally came with.

The Solution for Pool Swimmers

Fortunately there are garment options in the market for children who are regular pool swimmers - perhaps in swim schools or swim training. These products are made with fabric that is built for chlorine-resistance and boast 3 to 5 times longer life in such conditions.
These bathing suits, in addition to being chlorine-resistant, are also stronger against piling, have better shape retention and, of course, keep their UV protection properties for much longer. If parents are buying these suits specifically for their sun protection properties, it is wise to keep this option in mind. The price premium that is required for the chlorine-resistant suits are well worth the additional price for the performance of the garment overall. It is not uncommon for these garments to be good enough to hand down to their siblings and friends.

If one were to find one downside with the chlorine-resistant fabrics, it would be the difficulty to get such fabrics dyed in pretty prints and funky designs. Designers, however, work creatively with the use of good quality placement logos and pictures to add a sense of fun to these garments for the age group that it is designed for.

The bottom line that we parents should always keep in mind is to select wisely for the purpose that the garment is to be used. If your child is an occasional swimmer, it is probably entirely unnecessary to consider this chlorine-resistant option.

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