Wednesday, June 5, 2013


This is where I was swimming last month.  I know I have yet to tell you all about my Super Duper Mexico Vacation, but I still haven't finished organizing all my photos and thoughts.  Needless to say, it was awesome.  I'm back in the big city now, but I'll be damned if I give up my water time.  So...

Husband and I have joined the pool!  We started this week, committing to four full months of membership (gotta get those discounts where you can, and the obligation to keep it up is just a bonus), and absolutely love it.  My pool's not as amazing as the Caribbean, but it's pretty damn wonderful.  All this has made me think it would be a good time to go over some pool essentials.
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8

Trust me, you need these things...

1. TYR durafast splice maxfit swimsuit - this is a workhorse of a swimsuit and I've just ordered my second one now.  They last forever, even with daily chlorine swimming, and even though it's built for sport (ie: not going anywhere no matter how fast you swim) it's still super flattering, and I love that speed stripe.  Makes me feel like a real superhero. 

2. Anti-fog goggles - these are perfect for me, but you need a pair of goggles that fits your own face.  After getting fitted at my local swim store in Madison, I now know that it just as important to try your goggles as it is to try your swimsuit; one model does not fit all.  You should be able to suction them to your face even without the strap, then you know you're getting a good seal and won't have any annoying leakage issues while you swim.  The anti-fog coating does wear off eventually but there's not much that can be done about that, and it's a nice bonus while it lasts.

3. Fabric swim cap - forget those annoying silicone ones, they won't keep your hair dry anyway and they just feel icky, am I right?  Did you even know there was another option?  I didn't until recently, and I'm in love with my nylon/lycra blend cap, so much more comfortable, and it doesn't disappoint me by failing to live up to false promises.  Yeah, I can be weird like that.

4. Turkish towel or pestemal - these are the only towels we use at home, but they're amazing for the pool (and beach) as well, since they're super absorbant, large enough to wrap yourself in, and roll up really tiny.  I cannot recommend them enough.

5. Shampoo for swimmers - all that chlorine takes its toll, so be sure to use a special shampoo to counteract it.  I've tried quite a few but this one from Malibu has worked best so far.  I also use it as a body wash and even a bit on my suit as well, since chlorine's not really good for any of those things.

6. The Oil - everyone raves about Moroccanoil, but honestly I love this argan oil from AG.  Just a tiny little squirt on my hair and all the dry crispiness from the pool is gone.  Plus it smells amazing.  And the little plastic pump bottle is so much more travel-friendly than that big glass one.

7. Johnson's Aloe Vera Baby Oil - this stuff is so good it really deserves its own post, but the short version is: it's a wonderful moisturizer.  I put it on in the shower (so fun, you turn into a duck and the water just beads up and rolls right off you) and gently pat dry afterwards, and then there's no need to stand around naked in the cold locker room slathering lotion all over your bits.  Make sure you get the aloe vera kind, or you will end up smelling like a little baby/little old lady, neither of which is good in my opinion.

8. Flipflops - duh.  Do not walk around barefoot, no matter how nice the pool/shower/locker room looks.  Get some that are comfy like these Hawaianas, and take up very little room in your bag.

Course, you'll need more stuff, you regular toiletries and makeup and things like that, but these are the things that I literally will not go without.  What about you?  Do you swim?  Anything to add to the list?


  1. Aw, I am so jealous! There are no beaches around here, and I am allergic to chlorine so I can't join a pool. I've got half a mind to drag my mom with me to Tenerife or something this winter just to feel some sand between my toes :)

    1. Oh no! Allergic to chlorine! How sad. Not that chlorine is that great, but the pool is. I wonder if there are any saltwater pools there? Is that a thing? Tenerife does sound pretty awesome though...

  2. Guess what - I can't swim. I spent 4 years in the shallow end holding on to the bar whilst keeping my hair dry in a rubbish swimming cap. I hated every minute I was in the water. However, when I had the boys, I got swimming lessons for them pretty pronto so they wouldn't have any issues like me when they got older and now they are pretty confident (unlike me).

    And there is something about Johnsons and the smell of some of the products. I couldn't do the talc - just makes me think of babies bottoms, not that I spent any amount of time smelling babies bottoms - it's safer not to. And if I do buy Johnsons, I buy anything other than the original scented stuff.

    1. Guess what - my husband couldn't swim either until a few weeks ago. (Sorry for outing you Husband, in case you're reading this!) But he got a taste of the joy of water on our recent vacation, just splashing around on the beach and snorkeling a bit, and decided to take the plunge. And now he's totally hooked! I can see how it'd be hard to learn as an adult though. I am still too scare to learn to ride a bike. Yes, that's ride, I don't know how to ride a bike.

      As for Johnson's, I totally agree that that original talc smell is hideous. But the aloe smells great, I swear!

  3. I envy you. I have a vacation in just two months. And then I will also swim and relax on the beach.

  4. I have made almost the same list of things to buy, because these are the things that are mandatory in my opinion.

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