Mermaids, man. What’s not to love? They have gorgeous hair, flashy tails, and impeccable taste in bikini tops. Simply put, they’re the babes of the sea. Which is why we’re pretty obsessed with the professional mermaids who regularly perform underwater for thousands of Florida tourists each year. Yep, mermaids. Real ones.
For more than 60 years, Weeki Wachee, Florida has laid claim to one of the most curiously awesome roadside tourist attractions in the state: A subterranean theater where visitors can look directly into the crystal-clear waters of Weeki Wachee Springs and witness choreographed underwater shows performed by real, live mermaids. Decked out in shimmering tails, these ethereal sea-sirens perform impressive feats of athleticism, all entirely underwater (supplemented by perfectly timed sips from strategically placed air hoses). Needless to say, they’re pretty dreamy. And with the amount of time they spend underwater (and the fact that they’re, you know, actual mermaids), we have a feeling they know a thing or two about beach beauty.
So, we chatted up three of Weeki Wachee’s subaquatic stunners—Cheyenne Bragg, Desiree Stookey, and Amanda Luter—for the scoop behind their pre-performance beauty routines, tips for keeping mermaid locks in good shape, and intel on which cosmetics wear well on both land and sea. It’s the closest you’ll get to beauty advice from Ariel.
Click through to see what the mermaids have to say.
Any mermaid worth her sea salt knows that logging hours underwater can wreak havoc on hair. Mermaid Cheyenne keeps her locks healthy and luscious by coating strands in coconut oil after she emerges from the water, while Mermaid Amanda reaches for both a detangling comb and a leave-in product like It’s A 10 Miracle Silk as soon as she gets out. Mermaid Desiree, meanwhile, applies conditioner before her swim, ensuring that her mermaidly sheen will stay intact throughout and after the show (she likes Suave’s Keratin Infusion line). As for growing out those long mermaid locks, Desiree swears by two things: vitamins and regular trims (though Amanda reminds us that, of course, you don’t have to have long hair to be a beautiful mermaid).