Image via iStock.
I have a dirty little secret: yesterday I went to the beach, applied SPF, swam, sweated, got salty, came home, and didn’t shower.
This isn’t a great first introduction is it? It’s the cleanliness equivalent of me asking how your boyfriend is when you’ve just broken up. I can feel you scanning the room, trying to edge away. Probably to find some hand sanitiser.
I am usually a very frequent washer. I have the kind of fine hair that requires daily un-lank-ifying, and – usually – the kind of hygiene standards that don’t create enemies. If my shower had a loyalty scheme, I’d be washing in First Class.
Yesterday, however, I just could not be bothered. I wasn’t going out, so I thought, stuff it, I’m not going in. Because sometimes showering is a drain – both literally, and on your time/energy/shampoo stocks/towel washing/floor mopping/moisturising. (You get it).
And I’m not the only one quitting the cubicle. Glee actress Naya Rivera just revealed on TV’s The View that she thinks showering daily (or multiple times a day) isn’t necessary – and that once or twice every three days does the job.
But, like that pair of jeans you’re desperately trying to get another wear out of, would you still pass the sniff test? Actually, yes, say medical experts.
In fact, being unfaithful to your shower might be the key to improving your relationship with your skin.
Dermatologist Dr Joshua Zeichner told Yahoo that high-frequency showering is actually more of a “cultural phenomenon” than a health requirement.
“People commonly shower once or even more per day – this can actually be harmful to skin, as hot water strips essential oils and can lead to irritation,” he explains.
His advice? Unless your activity level and climate dictate otherwise, skip the daily shower for one every two or three days; in doing so, you may make your skin less sensitive, helping to prevent allergies and eczema. If you’re feeling un-fresh on non-shower days, simply whizz a soapy cloth or cleansing wipe over your underarms, genitals, rear-end and under your breasts (the areas he finds to be most prone to odour-causing bacteria).
Of course, there are two other non-medical benefits. Products would last a lot longer, and the queue for the bathroom would be a lot shorter. Both long-held dreams of mine. But swapping a full wash for a three-day wipe?
I showered this morning.
So… how often do you shower?