Why Jell-O Is the Best-Kept Beauty Secret for Olympic Swimmers

It's an 🇺🇸 staple outside the kitchen too.

beauty tips
(Image credit: Design by Dana Tepper)

If there's a genre of athlete that's mastered the art of indestructible makeup, it's the synchronized swimmer. The ladies of this majestic sport are well-versed in the art of making their face beats waterproof—and the same goes for their hair.

It's funny, because when you're watching their mesmerizing routines, it's easy to gloss over the fact that they're performing inside and outside of the pool, sans swim caps. So how exactly do they keep their coifs, well, coiffed?

synchronized swimmers

(Image credit: Getty Images)

In a new interview with Vogue, U.S. synchronized swim goddesses Anita Alvarez and Mariya Koroleva reveal their we-never-would-have-guessed-it trick...

gelatin

(Image credit: Marie Claire)

"When we compete, we put Knox gelatin in our hair," they explain. "It's like unflavored Jell-O—we mix it with water, and it turns into a gooey mixture. You comb or brush that into your hair, put it up in a bun, and put a headpiece over that, so when it dries, it gets really hard and your hair doesn't fall out when you swim. We like to add glitter and other decorations to it—it's easy."

Uh, so does this mean glitter roots are cool for the pool? All signs point to yasss.

synchronised swimmers

(Image credit: Getty Images)

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Lauren Valenti
Lauren Valenti

I’m the associate web editor at Marie Claire. I love to while away the hours at coffee shops, hunt for vintage clothes, and bask in the rough-and-tumble beauty of NYC. I firmly believe that solitude can be a luxury if you’ve got the right soundtrack—that being the Rolling Stones, of course.