Drying Off After a Swim: A Comprehensive Guide to Swimmer’s Post-Pool Attire

Swimming is a fun and invigorating activity that many people enjoy. But what do swimmers wear when they get out of the pool? This is a question that many people have asked, and in this comprehensive guide, we will explore the different options available to swimmers when it comes to drying off after a swim. From towels to robes, we will cover everything you need to know about swimmer’s post-pool attire. So whether you’re a seasoned swimmer or just starting out, read on to discover the best ways to dry off and feel comfortable after a refreshing dip in the pool.

What to Wear After Swimming: The Importance of Proper Drying

The Benefits of Drying Off After a Swim

Preventing Skin Irritation

One of the primary benefits of drying off after a swim is preventing skin irritation. Chlorine and other chemicals found in pool water can be harsh on the skin, causing redness, itching, and even rashes. Properly drying off can help to remove these chemicals from the skin, reducing the risk of irritation.

Reducing the Risk of Infection

In addition to preventing skin irritation, drying off after a swim can also help to reduce the risk of infection. Wet hair can be particularly problematic, as it can trap water against the scalp, increasing the risk of bacterial and fungal infections. By thoroughly drying off after a swim, individuals can help to reduce the risk of these types of infections.

Improving Comfort and Hygiene

Finally, drying off after a swim can help to improve comfort and hygiene. Wet clothing can be heavy and uncomfortable, and it can also trap odors and bacteria, making them more difficult to remove. By properly drying off after a swim, individuals can help to improve their overall comfort and hygiene, as well as reduce the risk of developing skin irritation or infections.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Drying Off

Not Using a Towel

Using a towel is an essential part of drying off after a swim. A towel can help remove excess water from your skin and hair, which is crucial for preventing bacterial and viral infections. Not using a towel can lead to the growth of harmful microorganisms on your skin, which can cause skin irritation, rashes, and other infections.

Using a Rough Towel

Using a rough towel can cause damage to your skin and hair. Rough towels can scratch your skin, leading to redness, itching, and discomfort. They can also cause your hair to frizz, leading to an unkempt and unruly appearance. Using a soft and gentle towel is recommended to ensure that your skin and hair remain healthy and well-moisturized.

Not Patting Yourself Dry

Patting yourself dry is an effective way to remove excess water from your skin and hair. Rubbing your skin or hair vigorously with a towel can cause friction, which can damage your skin and hair. Instead, gently pat your skin and hair with a towel to remove excess water. This will help to prevent skin irritation, hair damage, and breakage.

Not Changing Out of Wet Clothing

Wearing wet clothing after a swim can cause discomfort and increase the risk of bacterial and viral infections. Wet clothing can retain water, which can lead to the growth of harmful microorganisms. These microorganisms can cause skin irritation, rashes, and other infections. Changing out of wet clothing is recommended to ensure that your skin remains dry and healthy. It is advisable to wear breathable and moisture-wicking clothing to ensure that your skin remains dry and comfortable.

Types of Swimwear for Post-Pool Dressing

Key takeaway: Proper drying off after a swim is essential for preventing skin irritation, reducing the risk of infection, and improving comfort and hygiene. Common mistakes to avoid when drying off include not using a towel, using a rough towel, not patting yourself dry, and not changing out of wet clothing. Different types of swimwear, such as swim shorts, swim trunks, swim briefs, board shorts, and rash guards, offer varying levels of coverage and protection. To dry off properly after a swim, follow the steps for effective drying, and consider using a microfiber towel, applying sunscreen, and taking breaks between drying sessions. Different types of towels, such as cotton, microfiber, terry cloth, and beach towels, offer varying levels of absorbency and drying speed. Accessories for drying off after swimming, such as swim bags, flip flops, and changing rooms and facilities, can help swimmers dry off effectively and comfortably.

Swim Shorts


Swim shorts are a popular choice for post-pool attire, particularly among men. They are typically designed to be worn during water-based activities such as swimming, surfing, or lounging at the beach. Some key features of swim shorts include:

  • Quick-drying materials: Swim shorts are typically made from moisture-wicking fabrics that dry quickly, making them ideal for post-swim wear.
  • Adjustable waistbands: Many swim shorts feature adjustable waistbands, allowing for a more personalized fit and ensuring they stay in place during activities.
  • Secure pockets: Swim shorts often have secure pockets for storing essentials such as keys, cash, and smartphones, ensuring they remain safe and accessible while swimming or lounging.


Wearing swim shorts after a swim offers several benefits, including:

  • Comfort: Swim shorts are designed to be comfortable, providing a relaxed fit and allowing for freedom of movement during post-swim activities.
  • Versatility: Swim shorts can be worn in a variety of settings, making them a versatile choice for post-pool attire.
  • Sun protection: Many swim shorts have built-in UV protection, helping to guard against harmful sun rays.


When choosing swim shorts for post-pool wear, consider the following factors:

  • Material: Opt for quick-drying materials such as nylon or polyester to ensure ease of movement and rapid drying.
  • Fit: Consider the fit of the swim shorts, ensuring they are neither too tight nor too loose for a comfortable post-swim experience.
  • Length: Some swim shorts are longer, providing additional coverage, while others are shorter and more revealing. Choose a length that suits your preferences and activity level.
  • Design: Consider the design of the swim shorts, including the presence of secure pockets, adjustable waistbands, and any additional features such as sun protection or built-in compression.

Swim Trunks

Swim trunks are a popular choice for men who want to dry off after a swim. They are a versatile piece of swimwear that can be worn during various aquatic activities, such as swimming laps, playing water sports, or simply lounging by the pool. Here are some features, benefits, and considerations of swim trunks.


Swim trunks typically have the following features:

  • Elastic waistband: Provides a comfortable and secure fit around the waist.
  • Drawstring closure: Allows for adjustment of the waistband for a customized fit.
  • Side pockets: Provide storage for small items such as goggles, keys, or cash.
  • Fit: Swim trunks can be designed to fit loosely or snugly, depending on personal preference.
  • Fabric: Swim trunks can be made from a variety of materials, including polyester, nylon, and spandex. The fabric may be plain or patterned, and can be designed to be quick-drying or sun-protective.


Swim trunks offer several benefits to swimmers, including:

  • Comfort: Swim trunks are designed to be comfortable and flexible, allowing for easy movement in the water.
  • Style: Swim trunks come in a variety of styles, from traditional boxer briefs to trendy designer brands, providing swimmers with a range of options to suit their personal taste.
  • Durability: Many swim trunks are made from high-quality materials that are designed to withstand regular wear and tear, making them a practical choice for frequent swimmers.
  • Functionality: Swim trunks often feature convenient features such as side pockets and elastic waistbands, making them a practical choice for swimmers who want to keep their belongings close at hand.


When choosing swim trunks, swimmers should consider the following factors:

  • Size: Swim trunks should fit comfortably and not be too tight or too loose.
  • Fabric: The fabric of the swim trunks should be durable and quick-drying, and may also offer sun protection.
  • Style: Swim trunks come in a variety of styles, so swimmers should choose a style that flatters their body shape and personal taste.
  • Color: Swim trunks can be found in a range of colors, so swimmers should choose a color that complements their skin tone and personal style.

Overall, swim trunks are a practical and stylish choice for swimmers who want to dry off after a swim. With a range of features, benefits, and considerations to choose from, swimmers can find the perfect pair of swim trunks to suit their needs.

Swim Briefs

Swim briefs are a popular choice for men and women who want to wear swimwear after a swim. They are also known as swim trunks or swim shorts. These types of swimwear are typically designed to be worn during water sports or activities and are made of quick-drying materials such as nylon, polyester, or spandex.

  • Elastic waistband for a secure fit
  • Drawstring closure for adjustable sizing
  • Quick-drying material
  • Made with UV-resistant fabric for sun protection
  • May have additional features such as pockets for storage or a lining for extra comfort

  • Provides a comfortable fit for all body types

  • Allows for freedom of movement during water activities
  • Quick-drying material helps to minimize time spent changing out of wet swimwear
  • Offers sun protection and UV resistance
  • Can be worn for a variety of water sports and activities

  • May not provide as much coverage as other types of swimwear

  • May not be suitable for all body types, particularly those with a larger waistline
  • May not be appropriate for formal or professional settings

In conclusion, swim briefs are a practical and versatile choice for swimmers who want to wear swimwear after a swim. They are designed to be quick-drying, comfortable, and offer sun protection. However, they may not be suitable for all body types or settings.

Board Shorts

  • Features
    • Elastic waistband for comfortable fit
    • Quick-drying material for fast drying
    • Side pockets for convenience
    • Back pocket for secure storage
  • Benefits
    • Provides good coverage for post-swim comfort
    • Allows for freedom of movement during activities after swimming
    • Lightweight and easy to carry around
    • Durable and long-lasting
  • Considerations
    • Size and fit: Choose the right size for your body type and consider the material and construction of the shorts to ensure a comfortable fit.
    • Style: Consider the style of the board shorts, such as the length and color, to match your personal taste and preferences.
    • Occasion: Consider the occasion for which you will be wearing the board shorts, such as a casual outing or a formal event, to ensure they are appropriate.

Rash Guards

Rash guards are a popular choice for swimmers who want to protect their skin from irritation and sun exposure after a swim. They are typically made of lightweight, breathable materials such as cotton or polyester, and feature long sleeves and a hood to cover the neck.


  • Long sleeves and hood to cover the neck
  • Made of lightweight, breathable materials such as cotton or polyester
  • Often feature a tight fit to prevent chafing and provide support
  • May have a lining to provide additional warmth


  • Protects the skin from irritation and sun exposure
  • Keeps the swimmer warm and comfortable after a swim
  • Provides support and reduces chafing
  • Can be worn as a standalone layer or underneath other clothing


  • May not provide enough warmth for very cold temperatures
  • May not be suitable for water activities such as surfing or paddleboarding

Overall, rash guards are a practical and comfortable choice for swimmers who want to protect their skin and stay warm after a swim. They are available in a range of styles and colors, and can be worn by swimmers of all ages and skill levels.

How to Dry Off Properly After a Swim

Steps for Effective Drying

After a refreshing swim, it’s important to dry off properly to avoid discomfort and prevent skin irritation. Here are the steps to follow for effective drying:

Step 1: Remove Wet Clothing

The first step in drying off after a swim is to remove any wet clothing. This includes swimsuits, rash guards, and any other clothing that may have gotten wet during your swim. It’s important to remove wet clothing as soon as possible to prevent chafing and irritation.

Step 2: Pat Yourself Dry

Once you’ve removed your wet clothing, it’s time to pat yourself dry with a towel. Avoid rubbing yourself vigorously, as this can cause skin irritation. Instead, gently pat your skin with a towel to remove excess water.

Step 3: Use a Towel

Using a towel is an essential part of drying off after a swim. It helps to remove excess water from your skin and hair, and it can also help to soak up any water that may be remaining in your ears or nose. Make sure to use a clean towel each time you dry off to avoid re-wetting your skin.

Step 4: Apply Sunscreen

Finally, it’s important to apply sunscreen after a swim to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Choose a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, and apply it liberally to all exposed areas of skin. Reapply every two hours or immediately after swimming or sweating.

Tips for Quick Drying

  • Use a Microfiber Towel

Microfiber towels are a popular choice among swimmers as they are designed to be quick-drying and highly absorbent. These towels are made from synthetic fibers that are able to dry up to five times faster than traditional cotton towels. The tightly woven fibers of microfiber towels allow them to soak up water quickly and easily, making them ideal for use after a swim. In addition, they are lightweight and easy to carry, making them a convenient option for swimmers on the go.

  • Use a Hair Dryer

Using a hair dryer is another effective way to dry off quickly after a swim. After patting yourself dry with a towel, turn on the hair dryer and point it at your skin. The hot air from the hair dryer will help to evaporate any remaining moisture on your skin, speeding up the drying process. It is important to note that while hair dryers can be effective at drying off quickly, they can also cause damage to the skin if used for too long or at too high of a setting.

  • Avoid Cold Air

Cold air can make it more difficult to dry off after a swim, as it can cause the skin to feel tight and uncomfortable. When the air is cold, the body’s natural response is to constrict the blood vessels, which can make it more difficult for blood to flow to the skin. This can slow down the drying process and leave the skin feeling uncomfortable and tight. In addition, cold air can cause the hair to become frizzy and unmanageable, making it more difficult to style.

  • Take Breaks Between Drying Sessions

It is important to take breaks between drying sessions in order to avoid over-drying the skin. When the skin is over-dried, it can become itchy, flaky, and uncomfortable. To avoid this, it is recommended to take breaks between drying sessions and allow the skin to recover. This can be done by taking a break from using a hair dryer or other drying method for a few minutes, or by patting the skin dry instead of rubbing it. By taking breaks between drying sessions, the skin will be able to recover and stay healthy and comfortable.

Towel Materials and Styles

When it comes to drying off after a swim, the type of towel you use can make a big difference in how quickly and effectively you can get yourself dry. Here are some of the most common materials and styles of towels used for drying off after a swim:


Cotton towels are a classic choice for drying off after a swim. They are soft, absorbent, and affordable, making them a popular option for many swimmers. Cotton towels are also easy to launder, and they can be machine washed and dried without any special care.


Microfiber towels are made from ultra-fine fibers that are woven together to create a lightweight, quick-drying material. These towels are highly absorbent and can dry a person off in record time. They are also incredibly soft and gentle on the skin, making them a popular choice for people with sensitive skin.

Terry Cloth

Terry cloth towels are made from loops of fabric that are sewn together to create a soft, plush texture. These towels are highly absorbent and can be used to dry off both the body and the hair. They are also a popular choice for people who prefer a more luxurious feel when drying off after a swim.

Beach Towels

Beach towels are designed to be lightweight and compact, making them easy to carry around with you when you’re on the go. They are often made from cotton or microfiber materials and are highly absorbent, making them ideal for drying off after a swim. Beach towels are also often larger than other types of towels, which makes them easier to wrap around your body and get yourself completely dry.

No matter which type of towel you choose, it’s important to remember to use it properly to ensure that you dry off effectively and avoid any potential skin irritation or infection.

Accessories for Drying Off After Swimming

Swim Bag

A swim bag is an essential accessory for any swimmer who wants to dry off after a swim. It is a lightweight, portable bag designed specifically for carrying wet swimwear and towels.

A typical swim bag comes with a variety of features that make it convenient for swimmers to dry off after a swim. These features include:

  • Waterproof lining: The lining of the bag is usually made of waterproof material to prevent moisture from seeping through to the outside of the bag.
  • Multiple compartments: Most swim bags have multiple compartments that allow swimmers to keep their wet and dry items separate. This helps to keep the wet items contained and makes it easier to find what you need.
  • Adjustable straps: Swim bags typically have adjustable straps that allow swimmers to carry the bag in a variety of ways, including over the shoulder or across the body.
  • Zippered pockets: Some swim bags come with zippered pockets that are perfect for storing small items like goggles, sunscreen, or a phone.

The benefits of using a swim bag to dry off after a swim are numerous. Some of the main benefits include:

  • Convenience: A swim bag is a convenient way to carry your wet swimwear and towels without getting them wet or dirty.
  • Hygiene: Using a swim bag helps to keep your wet swimwear and towels separate from your dry items, which helps to maintain hygiene.
  • Time-saving: By using a swim bag, you can save time by not having to go back to your locker or car to get your dry clothes or towel.

When choosing a swim bag, there are several considerations to keep in mind. These include:

  • Size: The size of the bag should be large enough to accommodate your wet swimwear and towels, but not so large that it is cumbersome to carry.
  • Material: Look for a bag made of durable material that can withstand the wear and tear of regular use.
  • Style: Swim bags come in a variety of styles, from backpacks to totes. Choose a style that is comfortable and easy to carry.
  • Price: Swim bags can range in price from relatively inexpensive to quite expensive. Consider your budget when making your choice.

Flip Flops

When it comes to drying off after a swim, flip flops are a popular choice among swimmers. These lightweight, easy-to-wear footwear options provide a convenient way to keep your feet dry and clean after a dip in the pool. Here’s a closer look at the features, benefits, and considerations of wearing flip flops as part of your post-pool attire.

  • Made of a lightweight, water-resistant material
  • Slip-on design for easy on and off
  • Thin, flexible sole for comfortable wear
  • Open-toed and open-heeled design for ventilation

  • Dries feet quickly and efficiently

  • Helps prevent foot injuries by providing a non-slip surface
  • Allows for easy movement and mobility after a swim
  • Provides a casual, relaxed look for post-pool attire

  • May not provide complete protection against water-borne bacteria and viruses

  • Can slip off easily, especially on wet surfaces
  • May not be suitable for swimmers with sensitive feet or foot conditions
  • Not recommended for use in high-impact activities, such as running or playing sports

Changing Rooms and Facilities

For many swimmers, the journey does not end once they have exited the pool. Drying off after a swim is a crucial step in ensuring comfort and preventing chafing, rashes, and other skin irritations. In this section, we will explore the various options available for changing rooms and facilities to help swimmers dry off effectively.

On-Site Changing Rooms

Many public and private swimming facilities offer on-site changing rooms for their patrons. These rooms are equipped with benches, hooks, and other fixtures to make it easier for swimmers to change out of their wet swimwear. On-site changing rooms can be particularly useful for those who prefer to avoid the hassle of carrying multiple towels or wearing heavy clothing to dry off.

Public Locker Rooms

Public locker rooms are another option for swimmers looking to dry off after a swim. These facilities typically provide a range of amenities, including showers, toilets, and changing areas. Swimmers can use these facilities to clean up and change into dry clothes or swimwear. While public locker rooms can be convenient, they may also be crowded and lack privacy, which can be a concern for some users.

Private Locker Rooms

For those who prefer more privacy and exclusivity, private locker rooms may be the best option. These facilities are often available at private clubs or resorts and offer a more spacious and personalized experience. Private locker rooms typically include amenities such as showers, toilets, and lockers, as well as additional amenities such as hairdryers, towels, and robes. Private locker rooms can be particularly useful for those who need to change multiple times throughout the day or who require a more luxurious experience.

Regardless of the option chosen, it is important to take steps to protect one’s belongings while changing. Using a padlock or a locker can help prevent theft, while placing valuables in a safe or secure location can help ensure their safety.


1. What do swimmers wear when they get out of the pool?

Swimmers typically wear a variety of clothing items when they get out of the pool, depending on their personal preferences and the climate. Some common options include swimwear, sportswear, or casual clothing such as t-shirts, shorts, or sweatpants. Swimmers may also wear a towel or robe to dry off and keep warm after their swim.

2. Is there a specific type of clothing that is recommended for swimmers after a swim?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as different swimmers may have different preferences and needs. However, it is generally recommended to wear clothing that is comfortable, breathable, and quick-drying. Materials like cotton or synthetic blends are popular choices, as they are lightweight and dry quickly. Additionally, swimmers may want to consider wearing clothing that covers their skin to help protect it from the elements and prevent chafing.

3. Can swimmers wear regular clothes in the pool?

While it is technically possible to wear regular clothes in the pool, it is not recommended. Regular clothes are not designed for swimming and can become heavy, uncomfortable, and potentially even dangerous in the water. Swimwear, on the other hand, is specifically designed to be lightweight, flexible, and comfortable in the water, making it the ideal choice for swimmers.

4. What is the best way to dry off after a swim?

The best way to dry off after a swim will depend on the individual’s preferences and the available resources. Some swimmers prefer to use a towel to pat themselves dry, while others may use a hairdryer or let their skin air-dry naturally. It is generally recommended to avoid rubbing your skin too roughly, as this can cause irritation or chafing. Additionally, it is important to dry off completely to prevent any water from pooling in your clothing or causing discomfort.

5. How long does it take for swimwear to dry after a swim?

The amount of time it takes for swimwear to dry after a swim will depend on a variety of factors, including the type of material, the environment, and the amount of water used during the swim. In general, swimwear made of synthetic materials such as polyester or spandex will dry faster than swimwear made of natural materials like cotton. Additionally, swimwear that has been washed or treated with special coatings may take longer to dry than standard swimwear.

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