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I’m sure many of you don’t like the feeling of hair sticking to my neck, releasing drops of water down the neck after a swim. I don’t too, which is why I started wearing swim caps.

I have short hair and always thought that only those with long hair need swim caps. I was wrong. There are so many reasons to use swim-caps and have them in your swimming bag.

It may not keep all your hair dry, but it at least reduces the amount of water reaching your hair. It also reduces chlorine damage to your hair. Most importantly, and why even those with short hair should use swim-caps is that it keeps your hair off your nose and eyes.

Best Swim Caps – Comparison Table

  • Material: Silicone
  • Great for: Males and Females
  • Price: $$
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  • Protection Against: Bacteria & Chloride
  • Great for: Professional and Recreational Users
  • Price: $$
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  • Protects from: Oil, Bacteria, and Chlorine
  • Made with: Durable Rubber
  • Price: $$
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  • Material: 100% Silicone
  • Great For: Professional and Recreational users
  • Price: $$
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  • Material: Silicone
  • Great For: Everyday use and Training
  • Price: $$
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  • Material: Silicone Compression materials
  • Offers: Water-Cutting Experience
  • Price: $
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  • Material: Latex-free Silicone
  • Offers: Pliability & Durability
  • Price: $
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  • Material: Silicone
  • Great For: Athletes & Water Enthusiasts
  • Price: $
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  • Material: Latex-free Silicone
  • Great For: Swimmers with Long Hair
  • Price: $$
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  • Material: Allergy-free silicone
  • Offers: Amazing Durability
  • Price: $$
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Competitive sports swimmers especially wear it because swim caps reduce the hydrodynamic drag while racing and training. They in the process can swim faster and fluidly through water. Last but not least, these caps ensure you don’t smell like a pool wherever you go!

With so many reasons and benefits to wearing swim-caps, I had decided that I had to search and buy one for myself. That’s when I found out that with so many types available, selecting one is easier said than done!

I did a bit of experimenting by trying out the best swim caps from various aqua brands and returning them. I finally found a cap I’m happy with finally.

But, I didn’t let all my research guide go to waste. I have penned down a list of the crucial features to consider and a list of helpful reviews of the best swim caps in 2020. The few minutes you spend reading my guide and reviews will help save you more time while you find the best cap.

What are the advantages of wearing a swim cap?

You most probably think that you need to wear swimming caps to prevent your hair from getting wet, right? Well, you are partially wrong. There are other reasons and benefits to wearing one.

  1. Most importantly, it prevents your hair from slopping in front of your goggles and blinding you while swimming. You could also call it a great hair management tool that helps increase your training.
  2. It keeps your hair out of the pool. Yes, you now have the answer to why swimming pools have so many black hairballs!
  3. Though swimming caps may not keep your hair entirely dry, it does protect it from excessive contact with chlorine-soaked water. It definitely keeps your hair dryer than it would be without a cap!
  4. These caps make you a little more hydrodynamic while swimming. It may not matter much to a recreational swimmer, but a few milliseconds go a long way in defining a champion! That’s why domed caps are the most popular in the competition section. They are perfect at minimizing your water drag profile.

How to choose the best swim caps?

Here are the essential features to consider while buying the best swim caps for 2020.

1. Material

Material is the most crucial of all the features to consider. Swimming caps come in different materials like silicone, latex, rubber, neoprene, and polyurethane with a different touch and feel.

Here is a rundown of the different materials used:


Nylon swimwear is generally stretchy and can be quickly put on, the reason why they are common with competitive swimmers. It’s perfect if body flexibility and comfort are essential for you. They are ideal to wear while swimming in open water and warm weather conditions.

However, others avoid buying nylon caps because they are not waterproof. Water can easily pass through it and expose the hair to chlorine.


Latex tends to stretch easily, which is why it’s a one-size-fits-all cap. Latex caps are also a better fit if you don’t have a full head of hair. They are cooler than silicone products and don’t slip much. However, regular swimmers avoid latex caps because they stretch and start moving or tearing within a few weeks of use.


Silicone is famous for not budging, and ‘keeping everything in place’ without pulling hair much. That’s why a silicone cap is meant for long hair. Besides, they provide more durability than latex caps. No matter how much you stretch and use it, it remains intact for a long time to come.

Thermal caps

These caps are perfect for swimming in colder climates. These products are of silicone and an additional PU coating that keeps your head warm and insulated while swimming in icy waters.

2. Frequency of use

Frequency of usage is another factor to consider while selecting your cap. The cheaper quality latex caps are generally enough for recreational users, who don’t swim much.

However, you need a silicone, neoprene, or Lycra swimming cap if you wear and swim every day. These materials are strong enough to provide for extensive use, especially amongst competitive swimmers.

3. Size

It’s your head size and hair length that determines your capsize. There are even caps for all types of hair. If you have extra long hair, then look for caps with extra space for the hair on its upper part. The cap you buy should be easy to put on, no matter how big your head or how long your hair is.

4. Design

While the design doesn’t affect your performance, it can make you stand out in a crowd. Most caps are designed plain, monochromatic, and straightforward. But there are also some colorful caps with stripes, flags, flowers, letters, etc as designs.


How do I put on a swimming cap?
To start, first keep your cap away from anything sharp, including your nails and jewelry. You don’t want anything catching and ripping your cap!

Next, if you have long hair, pull it up into a bun and tie with a hairband. Now that you are ready to put on the cap, use both hands to hold it wide open. Place your fingers in the middle, with thumbs on the outside.

Now, starting from the forehead, pull the cap over your hair and down towards your neck. Voila! Your cap fits you snugly with a comfortable feel on your head. Don’t worry if there are some stray hairs. Just tuck them under the cap.
What are pockets in swim caps?

Hair swim caps with ear pockets are a must for people with a swimmer’s ear. It’s a severe condition with lots of itching, discomfort, redness, and drainage in the ear-canal.

You naturally want something to protect your ears, especially if you practice every day. A swimming hat with pockets proves helpful to you here. These caps are more likely to cover your ears than regular swim hats. They form a watertight seal and feel over your ears and don’t budge.
Why should I use hair swim caps?
There are various reasons and benefits to wearing the best swim caps. Most importantly, it’s for your overall health and your improved performance.

It protects your hair from excessive exposure to chlorine. Besides studies have proven that your hair’s constant exposure to chlorine can lead to substantial hair damage. It only leaves you with weak and lifeless hair with a foul smell.

Swim hats also protect your ears, which is also essential. The human ear is susceptible to the bacteria found in water and commonly suffers from its inflammation.

Besides protecting your hair and eyes, swim-caps are also vital for improving your swimming and training performance. They minimize water drag and also prevent hair from reaching and blocking your eyes.
Why do swimmers use double swimming caps?
Well, I was surprised to learn that there are various reasons for doing this. The main reason is that a double cap prevents their goggles from budging while swimming. They do this by putting on the first cap, and then their swim goggles and then placing the second cap atop it.

Another reason is that wearing two different material caps helps reduce body resistance while swimming. The first cap is usually a latex swim cap, which firmly sits on the head. The second cap is typically a cap silicone.
Does water temperature affect a swim cap’s performance?
Yes, it does, and it’s because of the cap’s material. While silicone and neoprene caps are strong and recommended, they tend to hold heat. So there’s a chance of your quickly overheating while swimming in water that’s 80 degrees or warmer.

Latex caps are a better choice while swimming in lukewarm temperature water. They are thinner and don’t retain heat as much as neoprene so that you can swim better.
Which is a better buy? Latex or silicone caps?
Silicone caps are always a better buy than a latex cap. They are flexible and elastic to give a snug fit while resisting tearing. Besides, silicone swim caps are non-toxic in structure and protects hair.
Do swim caps keep hair dry?

Yes and no. The durable and expensive caps can prevent 90% of the water from reaching your hair. In short, swim-caps do not keep your hair 100% dry but will protect and prevent most of your hair from getting wet.

Are swim caps a necessity while swimming?
Yes, while swimming goggles are the most essential swimming gear, swim-caps are a close second. The best swim caps are important and necessary for protecting your hair from harmful chemicals like salt, lead, and chlorine. They are especially important for aqua sports competition racing.
How to care for swim caps?
Like anything else you buy and own, the right maintenance can prolong your cap’s life. Besides, after all the tugging and stretching, and the chlorine and sunlight exposure it receives, how can you expect it to last without some care?

You don’t even have to do much.

All you need to do is rinse the cap with some non-chlorinated water after each swim. Then either gently pat it dry with a towel or air it dry. Even sprinkling some baby powder on its smooth inside helps the cap to absorb moisture evenly.

And of course, you need to keep your cap away from sharp objects whenever in storage. All it takes is a small prick, and the purpose of wearing a cap is lost.

Swimming cap reviews

1. The Friendly Swede Silicone Swim Caps – Best swim cap with ear pockets

The friendly Swede swim cap helps improve your focus while swimming. It’s hydro-dynamically provides for less resistance, with minimal hair falling onto your eyes. It is from Sweden, to suit men, women and children, and both professional and amateur swimmers.

The silicone long hair swim cap is not only wrinkle-free but also has ergonomically designed comfortable ear pockets. They prove helpful in protecting you from any possible overpressure.

It comprises of 100% premium quality silicone for maximum stretch and durability. It is better than latex, meaning it stretches to fit without ripping and tearing.

It’s so much quicker and easier to take the silicone caps on and off without worrying about pulling or snagging long hair. Moreover, it also offers a snug fit to keep your hair as dry as possible.

However, I like that the manufacturer does give a warning. They say that the cap does keep hair away for reduced disturbance and increased focus, but aren’t entirely waterproof.

There is always a chance of your hair getting wet. It all depends on your head size and the hair length and thickness. Their warning, in turn, proves that they aren’t making any false claims. They also offer a solution of wearing two layers of swim-caps to prevent hair from getting wet while swimming underwater.


Ergonomic ear pockets keep water away from ears

Ideal for use by both professional and beginners

Safe for those with latex allergies

Pack of 2, designed for those with long hair

Comes with a lifetime warranty


May not entirely cover very thick and long hair

Complaints of it ripping on the side

Not meant for babies

2. Swim elite Premium Silicone Swim Cap – Best swim cap for kids

Who said swimming has to be boring? You no longer have to use the same swimming cap day in and day out with the Swim elite Premium swim cap around! If you wonder why it’s because it’s reversible and wearable on both sides.

Each cap comes in two color combinations of silver and black, blue and black or red and white. So you have at least two colored silicone swim hats to interchange every day.

While the color combination and its reversibility are what fascinated me the most, they come with other useful features. For example, it slides on and stays on for a longer time. There is no worry about any hair damage or snagging, even with people with long hair.

Besides, the cap is lightweight and designed to reduce tear resistance for longevity while training. It’s made of odorless, premium elastic materials to protect your hair from harmful substances effectively.

The cap fits young people and adults, another plus feature. It’s wrinkle-free, thereby letting you focus more on your swimming and end up a winner. I have to mention that professional swimmers approve of this hat, mainly because it’s perfect for prolonged competition use.

There’s also an accompanying protective bag for storing and carrying your swim hat around. The cap’s ability to easily stretch gives a snug and optimal fit. It thereby doesn’t get hair wet, reduces drag, and prevents water from entering the ears.


Best for both medium and long hair

Comes with the best quality elite reassurance

Odorless and allergy-free

Fits men, women and children from sizes S to XXL

Can be worn on both sides

3 color combinations available


Complaints of hair getting wet

3. Beemo Latex Swim Cap –best swimming hat with chin strap

The TYR Lycra brand swim cap is uniquely designed. It has a bubble crepe latex texture and an adjustable chin strap. It offers a plus point for those who worry about their caps slipping off while swimming.

However, the strap comes with a drawback. It is not waterproof, so your hair may get wet. It’s loose and not watertight like the TYR Lycra swim cap.

This cap is available comes in various colors, but in a single low cut, one-size-fits-all products. The latex cap is a favorite with most swimmers because it completely covers and protects your ears from filling with water.

One of the many features that intrigued me in this latex cap is its fantastic stretch feather. It can be stretched to practically twice its original size, making it all the more easy to take off and put it on. It, in the process, keeps your hair away from chlorine and harmful substances while keeping your hair away from your eyes.

Its smooth finish provides for minimum drag, giving you a faster advantage over your competition in the pool. Besides, latex is known to retain colors for a more extended period. So the colors remain bright for some time.


Imported latex swim cap

Has an adjustable chin strap

Comes with a 100% money-back guarantee

Softer than regular standard caps


Not very tight-fitting

Hair may not remain dry

4. TYR La Vengadora Swim Cap – Best leak-proof cap

Looking at the cap, it’s evident that its colorful design struck my fancy! Yes, the La Vengadora TYR cap is unlike most swimming hats in this list, because it’s not a dull, boring color. It is multi-colored with a design that makes you stand out in the pool.

Besides the aesthetics, the cap has a host of useful features. It is100% silicone and effectively prevents hair from getting wet while minimizing drag. Besides, there’s no worry of hair reaching your eyes while swimming, which in turn helps you perform better.

It’s hypoallergenic gear, and exceptionally safe choice for those with latex allergies. Though the cap may be lightweight and super soft to feel, it’s durably built. It comes with an anti-slip design that makes it safe for racing, and all the more easy to put on and take off.

While the TYR is famous for being extra large in design, it’s also the best leak proof swim cap. It, therefore, keeps your hair relatively dry and protected from the chlorine, oils, and other harmful pool substances.


Designed for minimum drag and maximum speed

Lightweight but with a durable build

Made of 100% silicone

Popular choice with both recreational and professional swimmers



Complaints of it being so tight that it causes a headache if worn too long

Complaints of it tearing

5. Arena Classic Silicone Swim Cap – Best swim cap for training

The Arena Classic silicone swim cap is popular with professionals because it’s durable enough to withstand long competition training periods. I found out that many swimmers have successfully trained twice a day for years with silicone caps truthfully serving them.

The Arena classic may not be as thick as its other counterparts, but it is still breathable and durable in design. It gives a soft and fits comfortably to prevent your hair from getting wet. It also protects your hair from chlorine and other harmful pool debris.

The fact that the cap helps reduce drag is why it’s so popular with competitive swimmers. It gives them a hydrodynamic advantage over their rivals by letting them focus more on their speed and performance. The 100% silicone solid swim cap comes in a wide choice of colors. It’s thus perfect and safe for those with latex allergies.

Gives a soft, easy and comfortable fit

Durable in design

Ideal for everyday use and competition training

Popular for competition use

Made of 100% silicone


Complains of it ripping while putting it on

Complaints of a flimsy design


6. Michael Phelps MPS X-O Swim Cap – Best swim cap for speed

Who in the swimming world doesn’t know Michael Phelps? Being the expert swimmer he is, it’s no wonder there’s a line of Michael Phelps brand swimwear, including the Michael Phelps MPS X-O swim hat.

In fact, according to the manufacturer, I learned that the X-O cap and MP Xceed goggles were an integral part of Phelps’s competition kit for some time.

It is a domed shaped cap. So it means there won’t be any chance of wrinkles forming. You won’t even see any extra material while you stretch the cap over your head. It is perhaps the main reason Michael wears the cap.

It gives him a substantial hydrodynamic advantage over his competitors. It’s not only a comfortable fit but also reduces drag while maximizing power and performance.

The cap gives such a performance advantage that the only other way you can maximize your swimming speed is by shaving yourself bald!

It’s made of 100% silicone, making it durable to wear and safe for those with latex allergies. Besides, the cap is both FINA and Phelps approved, giving anyone a good enough reason to start wearing it!


Made of 100% silicone

Dome-shaped hat

Gives a snug and comfortable fit

Has a Michael Phelps logo on the center front


Complaints of the cap being too tight and uncomfortable to wear

No XL size

7. Speedo Silicone Solid Swim Cap – Best swim cap to keep water out of ears

The Speedo silicone solid swim cap is a cap worth your money. It is relatively cheap when compared to other expensive swim caps.

However, it doesn’t come with any compromise in its performance! It’s not surprising, considering it’s a cap from Speedo, one of the most renowned swimwear brand. They know their job and how to design a cap for actual swimming.

I especially liked the swim cap speedo silicone for its many color options, which makes you stick out in the pool. The cap is lightweight, but highly durable because it’s of silicone. It also comes with excellent stretch properties for added flexibility and durability.

It gives a snug fit on the head to help minimize drag. I also liked that it didn’t snag or pull my hair while wearing or removing it. It’s just perfect for preventing medium or long hair from getting wet. it also protects your hair from chlorine and other harmful pool substances.

As the hat doesn’t contain any latex, it’s safe for anyone with latex allergies. It is designed with more space to comfortably and securely fit long and medium hair.


No pulling or snagging of hair

Comes in various colors

Safe for those with latex allergies

Lightweight but durable


Complaints that it’s not as thick and durable as required

8. TYR Wrinkle-Free Silicone Cap – Best for triathletes

It doesn’t matter where you swim, or what type of swimmer you are. What does matter is that you need a cap like TYR wrinkle-free silicone cap. It keeps your hair dry and protected from chlorine and any harmful substances.

To me, the highlight of this cap is that though it’s thick, it quickly pulls and stretches to cover your head and eyes. It’s durably built and gives such a snug fit you don’t have to worry about it budging. It is strong and snug enough to keep your hair nicely tucked inside even through the most extended workouts.

The cap has a smooth, wrinkle-free surface that will reduce drag and, in the process, maximizes your performance. It is the main reason the cap is so popular with triathletes, always looking for the right swimwear that helps them clock the best race times.

Besides, triathletes also like the fact that the cap gives such a tight fit but is easily removable during a transition. It is a one-size-fits-all cap, meaning that both adults and children can wear it.


Made of silicone

Made in China

Gives a snug fit

Has non-slip interiors

Most durable gear


Some complaints of the cap ripping while putting it on

9. Speedo Silicone Long Hair Swim Cap – Best silicone cap for long hair

Swimming with long hair can be tedious and tiring! You have to maintain your hair to ensure it doesn’t get wet and doesn’t come in your way. Besides, after taking so good care of your hair, the last thing you want is chlorine creating havoc on it!

It’s keeping all this in consideration that Speedo, the all-time swim gear favorite company, came up with a silicone long hair swim cap. Why? I asked myself the same question. I learned it’s not only because the cap has enough space for long hair but also because it doesn’t snag or pull hair.

Like other caps, it also gives a secure fit to help reduce drag and maximize performance. I liked the fact that it is lightweight in design and strong in function.

It’s latex-free and made of 100% silicone. So it makes an excellent buy for those with long hair and latex allergies.


Perfect for long-haired users

Latex-free and made of silicone

Gives a snug, secure fit

Minimizes drag while maximizing performance


Some complaints of it tearing within a few months of use

10. Lahtak Long Hair Swim Cap – Best dreadlock and braids cap

After spending so much time and effort maintaining your long hair, braids, and dreadlocks, you may practically cringe thinking about swimming!

You wonder how you can protect your beautiful hair from harmful substances like chlorine, and getting wet. Besides, you need so much time drying the hair and then combing and styling it once again.

Well, you no longer have to cringe with the Lahtak long hair swim cap around. I asked a few friends with thick hair and braids and found out that they don’t use any other cap than the Lahtak. I naturally had to find out why.

They replied that other caps press against the head. However, the Lahtak doesn’t push, press, or even clench at your head.

The cap is not just a larger version of other snug-fitting hats. It comes with a unique loose fit design where one part fits your head, and the other part leaves your hair free. In short, it doesn’t touch or press against your hair.

The Lahtak has the toughest silicone in the market, making it extra stretchable, durable, soft, and comfortable to wear. Besides, it’s also long-lasting and perfect for those with not just long hair, but with curly and long rebonded hair.

You can finally enjoy your favorite sport without worrying about wet hair. Yes, while most caps don’t promise 100% dry hair, the Lahtak assures this most of the time. You can adjust the cap’s tightness and prevent water from entering by squeezing the air out of it to get a secure seal.


Comes with a 90-day customer money-back guarantee

Doesn’t press hair to head

Comfortably covers long, braided hair

Some colors available in a downsized version

Keeps hair dry most of the time

100% allergy free


Too large for small heads

Complaints of bottom part getting wet

Tends to tear with repetitive use


Wow! I now know why I found it so difficult to finally select the best swim caps! There are so many types of caps and reviews, each in the list with their individual advantages and disadvantages.

I’ve learned one thing though through my cap search and buying guide process. The best swim caps are those that fit the customer’s needs and frequency the most.

In a nutshell,

Live Your Aloha Swim Caps Review

Swim Caps


5 5 1

“Great Explanation. I recommend this guide to anyone who wants to buy a swim cap for better performance.


  • Katalina M

    Aloha! I’m Katalina M. I’m a PADI Certified Scuba Instructor and I’m responsible for writing about scuba & snorkeling trips based on my experience as a scuba diving expert in Hawaii. I grew up in a small town on the east coast, but I’ve called Hawaii home for the past five years. It’s an amazing place to live – there’s always something new to explore, and the people are incredibly friendly and welcoming. When I’m not swimming or diving, you can usually find me enjoying Hawaiian nightlife and culture. Mahalo for reading!

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