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How to Care for a Swim Cap


Swim caps are the most frequently-replaced pieces of swim gear, mainly because they simply can't last more than a few months. After all the stretching, pulling, and chlorine/sunlight exposure they see, the material simply breaks down. However, there are a few easy steps you can take to extend the life of your cap.

While Wearing the Swim Cap

Remove any clips or bobby pins from your hair when wearing a swim cap. The sharp metal ends and edges can puncture your cap. If you need to adjust your cap, use your fingertips — not your fingernails — to pull it into place.

After Swimming

Rinse your cap off in non-chlorinated water, and then dry the cap off gently with a towel or allow it to hang dry. You can sprinkle talcum or baby powder inside the cap and distribute it evenly — this absorbs moisture that can otherwise lead to bacteria growth and keeps the cap from sticking to itself (not necessary for LYCRA™ or mesh caps). Between uses, keep the cap in a case or a soft compartment of your bag to protect it from sharp objects.

When to Buy a New Cap

With proper care, caps can survive many months of regular use, but those that develop stretched-out areas or small holes will need a replacement soon. The wear areas get bigger each time you put the cap on. Once a cap starts to stick to itself, has black mold spots, or discoloration, it is time to replace it.

Shop all Swim Caps

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TX Mom
6 months ago.
My daughter has a white silicone cap that has yellow stains. We think from sweat at an outdoor swim meet. Any suggestions for getting yellow stains out of a white silicone swim cap? Thanks!
SwimOutlet
6 months ago.
Hi TX Mom!

You can try a method of using equal portion of baking soda and vinegar together with light scrubbing with an old toothbrush.
Kj
1 year ago.
I currently live in a country where talcum powder is not available. What else can I use to keep my silicone swim cap fresh?
SwimOutlet
1 year ago.
Hi KJ!

You can sprinkle baby powder instead.
Keiji
11 months ago.
how can i put my name on my speedo fastskin3 cap?
Megan Conboy
1 year ago.
What happens to a cap if you accidentally put it in the washer?
SwimOutlet.com
1 year ago.
The quality of the swim cap will be affected and worse, can be ripped in no time after it's been put in the washer.
Allison
1 year ago.
Hi,
Is there a way to recycle latex swim caps?
SwimOutlet
1 year ago.
Hi Allison!

For caps that are in decent shape (no rips or holes worn through), consider donating them. If you're on a swim team or swim at a local club, ask the pool manager if they need any extra caps. Or, bring your caps to practice for team members to pick through. A cap that would otherwise be garbage to you might strike a fellow swimmer's fancy.
Vale
1 year ago.
Hi, I was wondering if you know the best way to swim faster? I want to impress
SwimOutlet.com
1 year ago.
Hi Vale,

SwimOutlet would recommend you to use swim fins and swim paddles to swim faster and to train to become faster!
Getsemani
3 years ago.
I have a tons of swimming caps and I was wondering if I can put flour on them
swimoutlet.com
3 years ago.
You can sprinkle talcum or baby powder inside the cap and distribute it evenly — this absorbs moisture that can otherwise lead to bacteria growth and keeps the cap from sticking to itself (not necessary for LYCRA™ or mesh caps).
molly
3 years ago.
I have a favorite silicon cap that is getting mold in it is there any way to get it out?
Swimoutlet.com
3 years ago.
Hello Molly,
When you see mold, it is best to throw this away and purchase a new one. If the cap has sentimental value, you can try to use baking soda and water or maybe bleach but this could break down the material of the cap.
Molly
3 years ago.
I have the same problem! But this cap I have never worn! It has been sitting in my swim bag for a year. I do swim everyday so it may be because my bag is wet but I would like to get he spot out.
Kayla
3 years ago.
How can I make my cap bigger and loose
Swmoutlet.com
3 years ago.
Hello Kayla,
Swim caps will stretch out over time but if you feel like the one you have currently is too tight, you might want to purchase a long hair silicone cap which provides more room, or something like the Speedo Silicone Aqua-V Large which accommodates up to a 21 in circumference head.
Anne
4 years ago.
How can I label a rubber swimming cap for school?
swimoutlet.com
4 years ago.
Hi Anne,
Many people use waterproof labels to label swim gear. Here is one company that does this, check out https://www.labelyourstuff.com/collections/waterproof-labels They have variety of sizes to choose from. I hope this helps!
leyla
4 years ago.
can you macine wash the swimming caps
swimoutlet.com
4 years ago.
Hi Leyla,
No, you cannot machine wash the swimming caps.
Jac
5 years ago.
So a little off the wall, but would appreciate any advice. My daughter recently volunteered at an Arena Pro meet and got a cap with about 6 Olympic medalists signatures during the meet and greet after the meet was over. Any tips on the best way to (in priority order) 1) preserve and 2) display it?
swimoutlet.com
5 years ago.
Hi Jac,
First, I'd suggest a Plexiglass display case and make sure it's sealed tight. Second, to help prevent fading when displayed, you can try a coat of clear fabric paint over the signatures (please test this on another cap of the same material to see how well it responds). I hope this helps. Have a great day!
Dave
2 years ago.
Curious what you ended up doing. My wife recently caught a very famous swimmers cap when they threw it in the stands at Nationals. Looking for the best way to keep it preserved. Thanks
SwimOutlet
2 years ago.
Hi Dave,


To preserve your swim caps, after using it, rinse your cap off in non-chlorinated water, and then dry the cap off gently with a towel or allow it to hang dry. You can sprinkle talcum or baby powder inside the cap and distribute it evenly — this absorbs moisture that can otherwise lead to bacteria growth and keeps the cap from sticking to itself (not necessary for LYCRA™ or mesh caps). Between uses, keep the cap in a case or a soft compartment of your bag to protect it from sharp objects. While using it, make sure to Remove any clips or bobby pins from your hair when wearing a swim cap. The sharp metal ends and edges can puncture your cap. If you need to adjust your cap, use your fingertips — not your fingernails — to pull it into place.
mia
5 years ago.
i have a mattal locker and some of the rust got on my white racing cap and i don't know how to get it off
Helen
6 years ago.
A much loved swimming cap had split, no longer available and matches a costume. Has anyone ever tried repairing a hat?! I'm thinking bicycle repair kits or waterproof adhesive....??
Swimoutlet.com
6 years ago.
Hi Helen,

Unfortunately theres no ideal way of fixing a swim cap. We recommend buying a new one. if you can let us know which cap you have we would be happy to see if we can find it for you. Have a wonderful day!
ZIta
6 years ago.
I too have a favorite cap that recently took a hit. And you no longer carry it. Will you really try to get them back in stock? I would buy several!
It's the black and white skull and cross bone pattern (big and small) all over the entire cap, silicone from Sporti.Please oh please restock this cap, I love it so much!!
Sebastian G-E
7 years ago.
im on a tean and there are tons of different methods to putting on caps which one do you recommend, and what will be best for my cap?
SwimOutlet
7 years ago.
Hi Sebastian,

To put a swim cap on, we recommend that you hold the cap open with both thumbs on the inside of the cap. While looking down place the front end of the cap on your forehead. The crease of the cap should start at your forehead and end at the nape of your neck. Pull the cap back until the back of the cap is down below your hairline. Please remember that swim caps can easily be torn so handle carefully if you have long fingernails. So swimmers wet their hair before putting on a cap to make it easier. I hope this tip helps.
Alyscia
8 years ago.
I used to have so many silicone caps and now I only have one. They break when I try to pull them tighter what should I do?
SwimOutlet.com
8 years ago.
Hey Alyscia -

Have you ever tried a latex cap?

- SwimOutlet.com
Catherine Weiss
8 years ago.
I hava arthritic fingers and cannot pull a cap wide enough to get it on my head.
what other types of caps do you recommend?
SwimOutlet.com
8 years ago.
Hi Catherine,

Try using Lycra swim caps because they are made of a more stretchable material and are softer than silicone or latex swim caps.

You can view our Lycra swim cap collection here: https://www.swimoutlet.com/lycra_swim_caps_s/294.htm

Thank you,
SwimOutlet.com
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