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Friday, 6 March 2015

Are We Too Clean ?

Image result for shower head with water
Out shopping recently I stopped to buy some shower gel. A simple task you would have thought, but perhaps not. I had to decide, did I want to feel energised, relaxed, nourished, full of vitality etc after my shower, the different creations on offer was amazing - all this plus of course the amount of choice for perfume - and the difference in prices.

Looking back to my childhood, it seemed my mother had much simpler choices. I can remember these, although of course there were more, Pears Soap / Lux Beauty Soap / Wrights Coal Tar Soap / Fairy Soap. I often wonder how many of us today actually use a bar of soap, we are so used to the dispenser containing our handwash and shower gel.

Looking back, I'm talking 50's and 60's here, there was another thing. We never used to bath or shower every day - did you - I suspect not. Sunday Nights were traditionally bath night, hair wash etc so we were clean and fresh for the coming week at school. The other six days of the week we just used to have a wash using soap and a flannel. Even flannels these days seem to be not so popular.

Reading an article recently it went on to state:  
"If you love nothing more than having a shower - or five - on a daily basis then you could be putting your health at risk.

Dermatologists from New York have suggested that showering regularly - especially in hot water - could dry out skin. They added that it can also cause irritation and wash away any good bacteria that naturally exists on the skin resulting in a higher risk of infection.

While the act of showering is as etched into our daily routines as, say, brushing your teeth, specialists have said that we're "overbathing" due to "societal norms". In essence, everyone else is showering too much - and because of that you are too.

After all, nobody wants to be known as the "riffy one".

Dr. Joshua Zeichner, assistant professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, told BuzzFeed that what we perceive as body odor is “really more of a cultural phenomenon.”

John Oxford, Professor of Virology at Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry told The Times: "A vigorous daily shower would disturb the natural bug flora of the skin as well as skin oils."

"As long as people wash their hands often enough and pay attention to the area of the body below the belt, showering or bathing every other day would do no harm," said Oxford.

"Even twice a week would not be a problem if people used a bidet daily as most infectious bugs hang around our lower halves. We pay too much attention to the body beautiful and smelling good - we should wash to stop cross-infection, not for grooming reasons."

And this theory applies to children too. Dermatologists suggest not to bathe babies and toddlers every day as early exposure to dirt and bacteria might help prevent allergies and eczema as they age."

Link to the article here

So there you have it. Modern living has changed our outlook, our patterns of life. Has it changed it for the better? Not too sure of that one, but we all have to live in the here and now.

But we can make our own decisions about our health and other related matters.

Mmmmm definitely think I'll take a relaxing shower before bed time.......

All the best Jan


Galina L. said...

I have not been using any soap or a shower gel on most of my skin for many years, initially my eczema was the reason. Now , when my skin is not so sensitive, I just don't see the reason to start.
A daily shower is just my pleasure.

Lynda said...

Yes, it was a weekly bath for us as kids but I do like a daily shower. I'm one of those old fashioned people who still uses soap (lux). I've never got the hang of shower gel. How times change :)

Roses and Lilacs said...

Excellent article. I heard a snippet on this topic on some news program but it did not go into detail. I'm old enough to remember the soaps you mentioned. Mom would store them for a long time before use because it hardened them and made them last longer.

Anonymous said...

From a male viewpoint. I can remember Old Spice then moving onto Brut and what about shower soap on a rope.
Do like my daily shower these days though.

Anonymous said...

One soap used in our house was Camay, it had a good creamy lather. Now I use the Dove products.


Lowcarb team member said...

Hi Galina - yes, many do find that soap, shower gels can affect the skin ... as can deodorants etc. A daily shower is a pleasure isn't it.

Thanks for your comment.

Hi Lynda - back then we got by with our weekly bath well, but it is great to step in a shower. Bet you've got some great smelling soaps, I used to love some of the more perfumed ones, they didn't suit all skin types but I liked them.

Thanks for your comment.

Hi Roses and Lilacs - many thanks for your comment. It's true we used to store our soap too, because as they hardened it did make them last longer .... memories, memories.

Thanks for your comment

Hi Ted - great to have a male viewpoint. Yes Old Spice and then Brut were the staples of a certain era BUT now look at the huge assortment of male biased toiletries that are available. It seems we all agree on one thing - we love our daily shower.

Thanks for your comment

Hi Helena - many thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. I too can remember the name Camay, If my memory serves me, I think in our house it was generally a pink colour, although a creamy colour was available too.

Thanks for your comment

All the best Jan