Why Are Cotton Clothes Not Allowed in Swimming Pools?

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Swimming is not only fun, it also comes with a lot of mental and physical benefits. However, like any other activity, swimming does come with specific regulations, among them the type of clothes to wear. If you’re wondering why are cotton clothes not allowed in swimming pools, you should know your swimwear does impact your swimming experience. 

Why are Cotton Clothes Not Allowed in Swimming Pools?

Much like showering, your swimsuit is also an essential part of your swimming pool hygiene. The type of swimsuit you wear reduces the risk of contaminating any swimming pool with external contaminants and waterborne illness.

Cotton clothes are not allowed in swimming pools because they can hold bacteria, detergents, and germs. When released into the water, people who are swimming can become sick. These bacteria and detergents can also effect the water clarity and chemistry. Beyond that, cotton is uncomfortable to wear in water because of how absorbent it is.

a group of people enjoying the swimming pool

Unlike other materials, cotton absorbs more water when immersed in water. Now imagine swimming in cotton clothes. These clothes will end up weighing you down, making it difficult for you to enjoy your time in the swimming pool. It also increases your risk of drowning, especially if you are learning how to swim.

Can You Wear Cotton Shorts in the pool?

You can’t wear cotton shorts in the pool. Like cotton clothes, cotton shorts also have the same effect. Wearing cotton shorts increases the risk of contaminating the water. It also absorbs the pool chemicals.

Since cotton absorbs a lot of water, it might end up weighing you down as you swim.

Reasons Why Cotton Clothes Not Allowed in Swimming Pools

ReasonsHow the cotton fabric behaves
Reason 1Holds bacteria, germs and detergents
Reason 2Holds more water than other fabrics
Reason 3Increases your risks of drowning
Reason 4Increases the risks of contaminating the water
Reason 5Absorbs the pool chemicals
Reason 6Affects water clarity and chemicals

What Do You Wear to a Swimming Pool?

Swimwear has not only changed the swimming policies; but also the technology involved in making swimwear. What you wear while in a swimming pool ought to make you feel comfortable, safe and confident.

This is why swimwear comes in different styles. The styles swimmers of all ages are allowed to wear while in a swimming pool include:

For Ladies

  • Bikinis
  • Tankinis
  • One-Piece
  • Skirted Swimsuits

For Men

  • Trunks
  • Swim Briefs
  • Swim Shorts
  • One-piece
three kids jumping on the swimming pool

Can You Wear T-shirts in Swimming Pools?

Almost all local pools have a policy against wearing t-shirts in a swimming pool. Overly baggy clothes like t-shirts tend to absorb water. Once it absorbs water, it becomes cumbersome and makes it extremely difficult to stay afloat or swim.

Also, the nature and material of most t-shirts may get stuck into the pool’s filter. This can be quite dangerous, especially for anyone training themselves to swim.

Can You Wear Leggings in a Swimming Pool?

Yes, you can wear leggings in a swimming pool. However, this depends on the type of leggings you use. If the leggings you wear are swim leggings, then you can wear them while in a swimming pool.

If the leggings you wear are regular leggings, then you can’t have them on while in a pool. Also, make sure you never wear leggings over your swimwear. Having too many clothes on while swimming can make it difficult for anyone, even expert swimmers to swim.

Can I wear Board Shorts in a Swimming Pool?

Yes, you can wear board shorts in a swimming pool. These shorts have become popular, especially among young men, because of their fashion style. You can also wear them outside the swimming pool, as a form of casual wear.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Nylon or Polyester Better for Swimsuits?

The answer to this question depends on the different qualities each fabric displays. For instance, if you are looking for a material with better moisture absorbency, then Polyester should be your top choice.

If you want a fabric that has a comfortable stretch, then the Nylon Material is better than Polyester.

What Does Chlorine Do to Your Clothes?

Chlorine is an essential chemical in all swimming pools. It, however, does affect your swimwear. Some of the effects you can experience include possibly disintegrating fabric, fading color, and loss of elasticity.

What Is the Best Fabric for Swimwear?

The best fabric for swimwear is Polyester. For several years, the polyester fabric has become the first swimwear option for most swimmers.

The reason why it’s the best is because of its feel on the body and its chlorine resistance. It’s also comfortable and can quickly dry when outside the pool.

Another standard swimwear fabric is Nylon. It’s a popular alternative to Polyester. Unlike Polyester, Nylon has a smooth fit. It’s also light. However, it’s not as durable as Polyester.

100 Years of Bikinis | Glamour


Every local pool has different policies on what to wear while in the swimming pool. Therefore, make sure you find out what policies the swimming pool your visiting has. Having the right information will help you make the right decision when choosing your swimwear.