Taking a shower is one of those things that is part of everyday life. Some people don’t feel good until they get home from work and take a shower. Although daily bathing is more of a ritual, it is about personal hygiene. If you too are wondering what is the ideal frequency to wash, look no further: We answer all your questions.
Cold water, hot water, in the morning or in the evening, nothing is better than a good shower to refresh yourself. Although washing is a reflex for everyone, there are many ways to do it and it is sometimes difficult to find your way. While it may not seem like a big deal, the frequency and manner in which you wash can damage your pores, cause irritation and stress your skin. Without further ado, we’ll tell you how to avoid this, so get your towels and washcloths ready!
How often is the best time to shower?
There are those who swear by daily showers and those who are a little more lax and are satisfied with a few showers per week. The ideal frequency with which to shower is actually assessed on a case-by-case basis. In fact, as dermatologist Mary L. Stevenson explains to Self magazine, the reason for showering is to get rid of sweat, dead skin cells, dirt and body odor. In this sense, the dermatologist is clear: The number of showers per week depends mainly on the person in question and his body.
What factors should be taken into account?
Although the question is not unanimously agreed upon among dermatologists, Dr. Mary explains that if there is one thing that is clear, it is that daily showers are far from being a necessity. Melissia Pilliang, a dermatologist at the Cleveland Clinic, agrees: Washing two or three times a week on alternate days should generally be sufficient. But if you work out daily, showering daily is a way to get rid of dirt and sweat. The same is true for those who are exposed to strong odors on a daily basis. In addition to external aggressions, some people sweat more than others: For them too, a more frequent passage under the shower head is to be prescribed. The question is how to do this without damaging the skin and drying out the hair.
Washing too often can damage your skin
Our skin is naturally made up of a layer of fat which protects it, it is what one calls the hydrolipidic film. Made up of sebum and sweat, it protects against impurities and microbes and allows our skin to remain supple and retain its moisture. Dermatologist, Marie-Estelle Roux explains to Franceinter that a too frequent washing can damage this protective layer because of shower gels and other hygiene lotions which often contain chemicals and soap which can be too aggressive. One solution to avoid damaging your skin is to space out your showers and wash a little less often.
Washing daily without damaging your skin
For those who don’t want to give up their daily showers, there’s no need to worry, there is a solution for them too. Dr. Pilliang explains that this is possible as long as “aggressive” practices are avoided. First of all, long showers are a no-go. They strip the skin of its natural oils, resulting in dry, irritated and even itchy skin. The first rule to follow is to generally not exceed 10 minutes and to take quick showers. A jet of water is enough to get rid of the sweat and other impurities present on the skin.
Another thing to consider is the temperature of the water you use: a hot shower, even too hot, can also damage your hydrolipid film. So try to wash with lukewarm water or even take cold showers, which have benefits that may surprise you! It is also recommended to avoid all shower gels that contain sulfate and that may be irritating to the body.
Even when using only mild products, it’s important to know that you should only soap certain areas of your body, such as under your arms, feet and private parts, according to Dr. Newsom. It is important to note, however, that you should not let the soap get inside your vagina. For people with dermatological problems such as eczema or acne, it is recommended that you seek advice directly from a specialist.
What about hair?
It’s hard not to mention showers without talking about hair. Here again, it is necessary to treat each case individually. Our scalp is made up of sebaceous glands. Depending on the sebum production of these glands, a person has more or less greasy hair. With the multitude of shampoos and other conditioners, repairing detanglers for curly hair, fine hair or long hair, it is difficult to find your way. Don’t panic, we are here to help you.
Vanessa Giani, manager of a large hair salon, explains to Doctissimo that regular shampooing is necessary to maintain an optimal sebum level. However, be careful not to overdo it: Washing your mane too often can cause dryness and dry, damaged hair. It is therefore important to adapt to your hair type and to space out your shampoos at the risk of having brittle, unattractive hair and damaging your hair fiber. So here’s how to have healthy, shiny hair according to your hair type:
If you have normal hair, you’re in luck! It’s the easiest hair to maintain, according to Vanessa Giani. You’ll need to shampoo your hair at least twice a week, which should be more than enough. From time to time, you can add a moisturizer after rinsing to keep the ends healthy.
As for dry hair, it lacks moisture. It is then recommended to clean it once or twice a week with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. It is important to never let your wet hair air dry. Follow up with leave-in treatments like hair oils. Apply castor oil for beautiful hair. An aloe vera shampoo can also be a great alternative, as it can also improve blood circulation and promote growth.
Those with frizzy hair should also wash their hair once or twice a week. Since their sebum production is lower, they need to compensate for this lack with nourishing hair care products such as avocado oil.
For people with oily hair, you’ll need to wash your hair a little more often, or even daily, according to Vanessa Giani. Their excess sebum is what causes greasy hair. To avoid “shiny” hair because of grease at the end of the day, you should wash your hair every day with products made from vegetable matter with cleansing effects and without silicones.
Finally, if your hair is not completely oily but produces excess sebum from time to time, you will have to adapt to your hair. You may not need to wash your hair every day, but it is recommended that you wash your hair a little more often than twice a week with a gentle silicone-free shampoo.
What are the alternatives to washing your hair less?
There are several ways to reduce the frequency with which you wash your hair. One of them is what is called a dry shampoo. However, be careful not to overdo it, as it can damage your hair if used daily and can lead to dry ends. It should also be noted that dry shampoo cannot replace a real shampoo because it does not clean the hair.
Another solution, a little more radical, is what is called No-Poo, literally no shampoo. The idea is not to use any chemical product to wash your hair. You’ll have to start by spacing out the washes by using a mixture of baking soda that will eliminate impurities and cider vinegar to make your hair soft and shiny at the same time. Little by little, you will not use any product and you will just have to wet your hair. After washing your hair, it’s important to use protective styles. Here’s how to style your hair according to your hair type.