A lot of people know more and more these days about gut bacteria and microbes. Some protect this and use less antibiotics and eat more fermented foods.
It is less known that such bacteria are not only in the gut but also in the whole body, even the skin. The gut has to have a good bacteria to function well, so does the microorganisms on the skin.
Also, an average American person takes a shower every day and this may be harmful.
Experiment of no shower
If you need at least 20 min daily to shower it means 2 years of the life spent in hygiene and a lot of money spending on cosmetics and shampoos, creams, conditioners…
What if did this every other day? Or even more days? Dr. James Hamblin, the senior of The Atlantic made this experiment i.e. wrote on it and stated that he used less soap than before, shampoo and deodorant too. He used them every 3 days.
Then he stopped and washed his hands only to prevent illnesses.
On dirty areas he just rinses, like after a run. If he has a bad hair day, he just rinses it in the shower. But no shampoo, no soaps and never whole body in the shower.
First, you may notice some smell or greasy hair and skin. But this means you used to excessively clean yourself before. The odor means bacteria feeding of oil secretion of the sweat.
To wash with soaps means removing that bacteria for a short while, and it renews itself alone and makes an imbalance for the microbes and odor causing.
If pause from soaps and shampoos, your body refreshes itself and the odor disappears with time. The ecosystem is steady now and you don’t smell at all, Hamblin says. You have no special smell altogether.
The commercial idea of “clean” we all buy
Before the 20th century we didn’t know that this was a marketing trick. The popular companies made us NEED soaps or mouthwashes and before that period, people never used such things.
Nowadays, people wash with shampoo and soap and this removes the natural protection of hair and skin and we get moisture with chemicals instead.
It is ironic that lotions damage the natural sebum and have toxins and chemicals that are no healthy.
Daily washing makes the skin and hair weaker than before, it cracks it is dry and this means the routine is harsh on you.
It sounds awful to take showers less, but it makes sense.
Risk of too much showers?
There are many risks like the skin imbalance of microbes of course. The long term side effects are still examined, but for example eczema is worsened with daily washes.
There are many people of a no-poo group, who do not use shampoos, and say their hair is shinier, healthier and not frizzy.
Also there is the option of chemical-laden body wash shampoos. When you shower less, you also need less of these products. And many chemical products are also not eco friendly.
A quick shower requires more water than a regular bath and the water use will be even more increased 5 times even by 2021.
If you use city water and do not use shower filter, you get exposed to cancer risks and chlorination effects like trihalomethanes THMs. These are linked to bladder cancer, development and gestational problems.
To shower in treated water means your skin and lungs get toxins and this is even scarier for kids or pregnant women.
Many studies claimed that showers and baths are greater exposure than the drinking water exposure. So, less showers!
The bigger problem is that you don’t need scrubbing the skin every day. There is no need and also the good microbes get removed this way.
Try this instead
If you still hesitate for this idea, just wash those areas that get dirty faster.
Usually this is the armpits, groin and feet. Dr. Casey Carlos, assistant professor in medicine department of Dermatology, University of California, the school of medicine San Diego stated that people want to use soap all the time. But they cannot understand the skin cleans itself nicely.
The only time she uses the soap is after heavy sweating r garden work and only on armpits, groin, etc. For a nice smell, washing the armpits is just enough.
She hasn’t used deodorant in 40 years, not even a natural one.
Washing the armpits with soap can have less bad effect when combined with fermented veggies, and less sugar. Also for more help, get baking soda mixed in water for a natural deodorant.
How to stop using shampoo? Tips.
Wash the hair less often to keep the natural shiny oils and use less chemicals.
Even better, when you use shampoo, opt for natural one. The soap based have a pH of 8-9 that damages skin and hair.
For less dull hair, additives that are used are silicate and borax that stop scum forming and dull hair. Get a natural chemical-free shampoo with even botanical additives for stopping split ends.
Other benefits are triticum vulgare or wheat protein that makes hair moisturized. Also people wash their hairs with conditioner and keep it shiny and with the natural oils. And always there is the coconut oil.
Are the bacterial sprays the new showers?
These bacteria sprays are in sales already and you can spritz them to naturally increase the good microbes and remove bad odor of sweat. This spray has ammonia oxidizing bacteria.
There are also probiotic soaps available in many health stores. It is not certain yet if these products are the safest or not and if they remove bacteria or not.
But, it is known already that probiotics make the skin healthier since many of us wash the skin off its nutrients.
Topical cures are also good to try and consider, but also let the skin naturally refresh its microbes once in a while.