8 Ways You Could Be Showering Wrong (2024)

1. Showering at the Wrong Temperature

Very cold showers may not be the friendliest type. They’ll likely wake you up but won’t help you relax. On the other hand, a scalding-hot shower isn’t the answer, either. “Hot water causes your body to lose its natural oil, leaving skin dull, dry, and itchy,” says Friedler — somewhere in the middle is usually best. The National Eczema Association (NEA)recommends a lukewarm temperature for bathing to keepdry skinissues, like eczema, at bay.

Choose a temperature that’s comfortable, not steamy.

2. Showering for Too Long

Standing under a warm stream of water may feel good, but staying in there for too long can be detrimental to your skin. “Just as with hot water, a longer shower causes skin to lose more oil and, thus, moisture,” says Friedler. If you notice you’re having dry skin problems, back off your shower time, capping it at 5 to 10 minutes, advises the NEA.

3. Washing With a Pouf or a Washcloth

Bath poufs are a great way to minimize the use of your body wash: You can definitely get away with using less product and still lather your entire body, saysDoris Day, MD, a dermatologist in New York City and clinical associate professor of dermatology at the New York University Langone Medical Center. However, they can act as a reservoir for bacteria without proper care, and they can also irritate sensitive or dry skin. Similarly, washcloths can, too, especially if you don’t clean them thoroughly. Friedler recommends soaping up using your hands.

4. Using a Harsh Cleanser

If you’re worried about germs, know that regular soap — including antibacterial soaps, nonantibacterial soaps, natural ones, shampoos, and any other soap product that sudses you up — will kill most viruses, says Friedler. There’s no reason to reach for anything harsher.

A mild, lipid-rich cleanser proved better for skin health — across a range of shower temperatures and rinse-off times — compared with a regular body wash, according to astudy. (The research was sponsored by Unilever, a company that makes personal care products.)

RELATED:8 Easy Fixes for Hygiene Offenses Older Guys Often Make

5. Not Scrubbing Your Whole Body

Grandma was right: Don’t forget to scrub behind your ears, between your toes, and in your belly button. Not doing so could alter your skin microbiome — the careful balance of bacteria on your skin — and possibly increase your risk for skin conditions such as eczema and acne. That’s what researchers of a study published in 2023found when they swabbed different areas of their skin (the calves and forearms, which they treated as control factors because these areas tend to get washed more often, and the aforementioned moist and oily areas, which they called hotspots) and then studied their bacterial differences through DNA sequencing. The researchers found the areas that tend to get washed more thoroughly had a greater diversity of bacteria than the hotspots, which is associated with a lower risk for skin conditions.

6. Soaping Up Before You Shampoo

To prevent acne and skin irritation, Dr. Day recommends the following regimen: “Shampoo, rinse it off, apply conditioner, wash your body, and then rinse off the conditioner and body wash at the same time.”

Following this order in the shower means the wash helps remove any conditioner and leftover shampoo from your skin. As for shaving, if you save it for last, your hairs will be softer from the heat, water, and steam — and easier to remove.

RELATED:13 Natural Dry-Skin Remedies You Can DIY at Home

8 Ways You Could Be Showering Wrong (2024)


8 Ways You Could Be Showering Wrong? ›

Your shower is too hot and too long

“Showers, especially in winter, are way too hot and long. This strips your skin of natural oils and lipids that help trap water to keep it moist,” says Dr. Gohara.

Why might you be showering the wrong way? ›

Your shower is too hot and too long

“Showers, especially in winter, are way too hot and long. This strips your skin of natural oils and lipids that help trap water to keep it moist,” says Dr. Gohara.

What are the mistakes while bathing? ›

Bathing too often- unless one is sweaty, grimy or dusty, one shouldn't bathe too often. Bathing with soap, shower gel or any other cleaning agent strips our body of its natural oils making our skin dry and scratchy. Using too hot water damages the skin. Hot water is drying.

What happens if you don't shower correctly? ›

Our skin is our defense to the environmental toxins and debris we encounter on a daily basis. If not cared for properly by washing, then we allow the opportunity for a fungal infection like ringworm or a life threatening bacterial infection, such as staph.

What is the rule of showering? ›

The first golden rule to prevent your skin from drying out is to keep the temperature of the water to 38 degrees at the most and the length to five minutes max, especially if you shower frequently.

What are the negatives of showering? ›

Skin may become dry, irritated, or itchy. Dry, cracked skin may allow bacteria and allergens to breach the barrier skin is supposed to provide, allowing skin infections and allergic reactions to occur. Antibacterial soaps can actually kill off normal bacteria.

Is a 30 minute shower too long? ›

Ideally, showers should be about 5 to 7 minutes and no longer than 15 minutes, says Yousuf Mohammed, PhD, a senior research fellow in dermatology at the Frazer Institute of the University of Queensland in Australia.

What are 4 bathing difficulties? ›

Fear of water or of being hurt by it. Disruption in daily routine or schedule. Unfamiliar caregivers. Mechanics of taking a bath too overwhelming.

What not to do after bathing? ›

Mistakes To Avoid After Taking A Bath
  1. Avoid rubbing your body with a towel - this is harsh for the skin. You need to pat with a towel and not rub.
  2. Avoid using toxic products after bath. ...
  3. Avoid whipping your hair to dry up. ...
  4. Avoid wrapping towel and pulling hair tightly. ...
  5. Avoid combing hair immediately after the bath.
Apr 26, 2023

What are the rules for bathing? ›

In fact, dermatologists recommend showering in water that's lukewarm or slightly warm. Do a quick rinse to wet your skin before applying any soap. Using a loofah, washcloth, or just your hands, apply bar soap or bodywash to your body. Start at your neck and shoulders, and work your way down the length of your body.

How many days is OK without a shower? ›

Many doctors say a daily shower is fine for most people. (More than that could start to cause skin problems.) But for many people, two to three times a week is enough and may be even better to maintain good health.

Should I shower before or after bed? ›

Most evidence seems to indicate that taking a shower one to two hours before bedtime gives the body enough time to reach the right temperature for sleep.

Is it better to shower in the morning or at night? ›

Though the two camps are staunchly divided, whether you shower in the morning or at night may not have significant implications for your health. Across a range of specialties, healthcare providers agreed that, in general, you can shower whenever you want.

What should you wash first in the shower? ›

Runoff from shampoo and conditioner might end up on your face and body and that can lead to clogged pores and breakouts, she says. With that in mind, first up is your hair-wash routine — which will, of course, depend on your hair type.

What is the correct way to shower? ›

  1. Stay cool. Hot water strips away natural oils and damages the skin faster, so stick to a lukewarm — or cooler — shower. ...
  2. Don't wash your hair too much. ...
  3. But don't wash too little, either. ...
  4. Focus on the dirtiest areas. ...
  5. Cleanse with care. ...
  6. Start at the top. ...
  7. If you're shaving, do it last. ...
  8. Pat yourself dry.
Aug 5, 2022

Should females take baths or showers? ›

Your personal hygiene priorities should determine whether you take a bath or a shower. If you're interested in promoting relaxation, easing fatigue, and treating chronic pain, a bath might be the right choice for you. If you're more interested in an efficient daily cleansing, a shower might be the better choice.

Does it matter how you shower? ›

Temperature, shower length matter

Lee and other dermatologists recommend shorter showers of no more than 10 minutes, using warm or room-temperature water — or even cold water — which is less drying to skin. Your shower is wasting huge amounts of energy and water.

What does the way you shower say about you? ›

If you wash your private area, it means that you're introverted or have low self-esteem. If you wash your hair first, you appreciate discipline and order. If you wash your chest, you're comfortable and confident in your own skin. If you wash your shoulders/neck, you're a hard-working, positive, go-getter.

Why am I adverse to showering? ›

This can happen for a number of reasons, such as a fear of getting water or soap in their eyes, a dislike of having their hair washed, a dislike of the change of temperature and sensory issues related to water.


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