I’ve been wearing swimming caps since the day I learned how to swim, and I’m not ashamed to admit that I did so because I thought I looked more like my favorite swimming athletes. I was very young back then and I didn’t really take much mind of the actual use of a swimming cap. My favorite swimmer, by the way, The Torpedo: Ian Thorpe.
Did you know that wearing a swimming cap lessens your resistance in the water? I didn’t know about it too. There are certain kinds of caps that are wrinkle-free, making for less drag and smoother glide in the water that ultimately makes you, not substantially, but fractionally faster.
And in any competitive sport, fractional difference counts, as you can win or lose any competition by .1 second.
It also helps that it keeps your hair protected from chlorine. And this is not for the sake of vanity or looking good, but chlorine can actually dry and cause rashes to your scalp if you’re exposed to it on a regular basis. Besides that, it will kill hair follicles on your scalp, unable to make more hair grow. Having that extra protection starts becoming a must.
Just like finding the right swimming earplugs or the best nose plugs for swimming, a cap is no different. All of them improve your hydrodynamics. Nothing also irritates me more than having my hair block my vision or intervene in any way when I am swimming.
I like to focus on my stroke and breathing, and when you’re constantly thinking about wiping the hair from your forehead, it makes you lose focus and momentum. Enough rambling from me, I’ve prepared a list of the best swimming caps as reviewed by other swimmers and triathletes. I hope the information on this page helps you out!
Best Swimming Caps Compared and Reviewed
|Top||Speedo: Elastomeric Solid Swim Cap||Speedo||Check Price on Amazon|
|Aegend Swim Cap||Aegend||Check Price on Amazon|
|Toplus Women’s Swim Cap||Toplus||Check Price on Amazon|
|TYR La Vengadora Swim Cap||TYR La Vengadora||Check Price on Amazon|
|The Friendly Swede Silicone Long Hair Swim Caps||Friendly Swede||Check Price on Amazon|
|RCELHCR Swim Cap||RCELHCR||Check Price on Amazon|
|Swim Elite 2-in-1 Premium Silicone Cap||Swim Elite||Check Price on Amazon|
|Kppalex Swim Cap||Kppalex||Check Price on Amazon|
#1 - Speedo: Elastomeric Solid Swim Cap
Let’s start with Speedo, because, why not, right? Speedo is the top-of-mind brand in terms of any swimming-related apparel including the Elastomeric Solid Silicone Swim Cap. It is durable and made of 100 percent silicone and is also free of latex.
On the inside part of the cap, you’ll feel very comfortable with a micro-inner texture that Speedo guarantees won’t tag or pull on your hair in any way.
I would recommend this to beginners and pro-swimmers alike who have shorter hair. The cap is only about .5 inches high and 4 inches wide, so it may not be able to keep longer hair protected.
If you have shorter hair, the fit on this product will be perfect for you. Its contoured shape will allow more hydrodynamics, and it has a great fit for optimum swimming performance. Overall, there’s really not much negative to say about a Speedo swim cap because this has been tried and tested over time.
#2 - Aegend Swim Cap
Coming in close with Speedo’s quality and durability is Aegend’s Swim Cap. Aegend was started by a group of sports and fitness enthusiasts in 2015, back then they were only selling things online.
Five years since they started, they’ve already created a huge following for their high-quality swimming gear.
Their swim cap is also made of pure silicone which has been determined to be the best material for swimwear. It’s tasteless and non-toxic while offering a good grip on your head.
One unique feature of this product for me it has been designed ergonomically through 3D technology to fit the average American’s head type. This 3D-fit will ensure that the cap encloses on your head tightly while still making sure that you don’t feel any pull or tightness from it.
Another feature I like about this cap is the extra spacing allowed for the ears. Most swim caps did not give much consideration on this, personally, I think it’s an extra step to make the wearer of the cap more comfortable, not having to feel that his ear is being squished all the time.
#3 - Toplus Women’s Swim Cap
Toplus has designed a swim cap specifically for women or men who dons afros or dreads. It’s a larger sized swim cap but still offers that snug fitness on the sides of the face while allowing more than enough room at the back to twist and fit your hair.
The product is made of silicone which will give you that softness and comfort even after long hours in the pool. It’s been designed to encase any kind of hairstyle be it long thick hair, braids, afros, dreadlocks, or even hair extensions.
As it is designed for women, it comes in 4 colors: black, blue, hot pink, and light pink— colors that women would absolutely love.
My favorite feature about it though is that it comes with free ear and nose plugs. I’m not quite sure about the performance of these accessories, but you’ll have the complete set already when you purchase this cap.
#4 - TYR La Vengadora Swim Cap
If you’re into Mexican culture, specifically art, then you would love the La Vengadora Swim Cap. La Vengadora which roughly translates to the ‘Avenger’, is a colorful swimming cap inspired by Mexican art.
It’s 100 percent made of silicone and is 5.5 centimeters high and 2.54 centimeters wide. The cap feels high quality and is designed to be a head-turner cap. It will stay on your head for hours as well without any signs of deformation.
The cap is targetted for both young and old, as long as you’re adventurous with your style, then this should be a good choice for you. It’s designed to be hypoallergenic and will surely keep your head protected while making you look extra cute in the water.
#5 - The Friendly Swede Silicone Long Hair Swim Caps
Designed for recreational and competitive swimming, the Friendly Swede silicon long hair cap is wrinkle-free which will allow increased hydrodynamics underwater. It’s made of highly stretchable premium quality silicone that’s toxic-free.
I like that it also has ergonomically designed ear pockets that will ensure your ears are less pressurized. The Friendly Swede also guarantees that it is easy to wear and take off. They offer a full lifetime warranty that comes with their products.
The manufacturer Friendly Swede has designed all their swimming caps in Sweden. Although their product is not waterproof, they will keep your hair from coming to your face as well as protect your scalp. It comes in two swim caps for every purchase.
#6 - RCELHCR Swim Cap
Most swim caps that you’ll find in the market are mostly made out of silicone. While that material is great for swim caps, PU is also another excellent material. PU or Polyurethane makes this swim cap softer and more elastic compared to other brands.
RCELHCR directly compared silicone caps to PU caps and claimed that PU-made caps are more elastic and more feel more delicate while being tight and strong enough to fit your head.
Because of the material Polyurethane, this makes the product highly-durable and might even last you your whole lifetime. It promises never to be deformed even after stretching and pulling due to usage. I like how the material feels super soft to the hand, though I’m not just sure if it will provide the needed protection of your hair from the water.
#7 - Swim Elite 2-in-1 Premium Silicone Cap
One thing that makes the Swim Elite Premium Silicone Cap stand out from the other swimming caps in this list is that it’s reversible. I like how I can purchase one cap and have two available colors ready to be interchanged anytime.
If you’re the practical kind of swimmer and bringing along an extra color of a swimming cap is nothing but a hassle for you, then you would want to consider this. Besides that fun feature, it’s made with high-quality silicone, which makes it latex-free and toxic-free.
Another thing that I like about this 2-in-1 cap is that it comes with its own protective bag, so you wouldn’t worry about mixing it with your other swim apparel.
#8- Kppalex Swim Cap
Almost all swim caps look the same, if you want to be a tad different and don a swimming cap which looks like a Spartan headgear, the Kppalex can provide you exactly that.
Designed for durability, the Kppalex swim cap is made of food-grade quality silicone which ensures that it is toxic-free, odor-free, and hypoallergenic.
It’s guaranteed not to deform despite wear and tear, because of its highly elastic and flexible material. Short hair and long hair will fit the cap and keep it there. Its edges are made to be extra thick so you don’t have to worry about adjusting it each time.
A feature I like about it is how it’s inner room seems to be extended and enlarged. It looks more of a helmet than a cap because of this but it ensures that there’s no tight pressure overbearing throughout your head. Surprisingly though, despite the thickened edges and extra room, this swim cap is lightweight.
Another thing I like about this is the spacious ear pocket. It made sure that the ears aren’t touching the cap at any point so that’s an added comfort for me.
My Number One Pick
- 100% Silicone. Latex-free
- Inner micro grid texture provides more comfort and stretchy silicone wont snag or pull hair
- Contoured shape reduces drag for outstanding hydrodynamic performance
- Soft, durable silicone for long lasting wear
- Interior textured surface keeps cap in place
- Snug fit for optimum performance
How To Find The Best Swimming Cap Suitable For You - A Guide
If you don’t own a swimming cap yet, or if you’re just worried about the subtle nuances that purchasing one might have then hopefully I can lend a hand. Below are the most important considerations to make when purchasing a swimming cap as a beginner.
There are also some of the most frequently asked questions by other swimmers that will hopefully help.
Scalp and Hair Protection
We’ve already established that chlorine is bad for your hair and scalp, on the other hand, ocean swimmers need protection from salt. In both instances, a swim cap is essential to make sure that your hair and scalp get minimal exposure from chlorine or salt.
As a preventive measure, you can opt to wash your hair immediately with shampoo and give your hair intensive cleansing just to rid it of all the chemicals and salt.
A great swimming cap will keep your cap in place therefore, keep your hair in there, too. When you have longer hair, the chances of it slopping around in your face is higher.
It will cause you to lose focus and if you’re swimming at a competitive level, that’s going to break your momentum. So it’s important to invest in a swimming cap that will keep every strand of hair in place.
The main reason why you’re wearing a swimming cap is to reduce your resistance in the water. This principle is called hydrodynamics. Again, this would be for competitive swimmers but is important for recreational ones as well.
Wrinkle-free and smoothly-designed swimming caps increase your chances for smoother hydrodynamics.
Frequently Asked Questions About Swimming & Swimming Caps
Q: Does water temperature affect swim caps?
A: While caps like neoprene and silicone are extremely durable, thick materials are known to hold heat. If you are going to swim in a warm pool, consider using a cap with a thinner design, such as a latex cap, to make sure that your body does not overheat quickly and that you have a comfortable experience.
Q: How do I properly take care of my swim cap?
A: In order to make sure that your cap lasts long, it will help to dry it thoroughly and sprinkle some powder after every use. Additionally, it is important to wash your cap under fresh water to ensure that you wash off all the harmful chemicals the pool has. Once you have done that, make sure that it is kept in a cool and dry area, as heat will definitely destroy your cap.
Q: How do I protect my hair from chlorine?
A: Just as there is a wide variety of caps to choose from, there are also a good number of hair products that can help you care for your hair if you are a frequent swimmer. It is important to pay extra attention to your hair if you spend most of your time submerged in chlorine as you want to make sure that you keep it clean and healthy.
Q: What is the best cap for everyday swimmers?
A: If you swim every day, it is best to choose a cap that is durable. Silicone is always the best choice when it comes to this. This material is durable as well as stretch-resistant, allowing you to use it for a very long time as long as you care for it properly. Latex may not be a good choice as when it is abandoned for a long time, it will turn into a sticky piece of plastic that may stick to your goggles and swimsuits.
Q: How do I take care of my latex swim cap?
A: As mentioned above, latex swim caps tend to get sticky if kept and abandoned for a long time. To lessen the chances of this happening, make sure that you pat your cap dry inside and out after every workout. Next, hang them out to dry to make sure no wet spot is left unnoticed.
When it comes to athletic apparel, it’s not always easy to choose which one is right for you especially when you’re performance is at stake.
It takes a lot of trial and error, and that costs a lot of money. Also if you’re getting serious about swimming, it might be time to start timing yourself. I did a review previously on the best smartwatch for swimming, check it out if you’re interested!
In terms of swimming caps, the things to look for aren’t too complex. A swim cap that’s durable, made with a kind of material you’re not allergic to, keeps in place while keeping your hair in place are your biggest considerations. Style and design follow.
If you’re looking for more gear to add to your swimming arsenal, check out our entire category on swimming here.
At the end of the day, it’s all about helping you perform your best in the water. You know most what kind of swim cap you need, so assess then choose the cap for you. I’d love to hear your recommendations in the comment box below. What swim cap should I add to this list?
Marko Rakic is a trail runner and fitness enthusiast from Sydney, Australia. He is the lead writer for The Ultimate Primate and believes the best way to live a happy life is through constantly challenging yourself.