Askanesthetician's Blog

An esthetician explores skincare issues and concerns

Bathe Everyday – Over Dry Your Skin? November 3, 2010

 

Cleanliness is next to godliness, right?  Well it turns out that not everyone thinks so.  There seems to be somewhat of a movement, a small one I gather, of people who are foregoing not only daily showers but the use of deodorant as well.  I found this out by reading an article, The Great Unwashed, in The New York Times recently.  People give a variety of reasons for making these lifestyle choices: a need to conserve water, potential health risks attributed to mass market deodorants (it should be pointed out that these concerns have been dismissed by experts time and again, see the actual article for more details), the feeling that one just doesn’t smell or is dirty, and that bathing daily contributes to skin conditions such as eczema.  Of course the part of the article that really caught my attention was the part about how bathing daily may over dry or hurt your skin:

Of late, researchers have discovered that just as the gut contains good bacteria that help it run more efficiently, so does our skin brim with beneficial germs that we might not want to wash down the drain. “Good bacteria are educating your own skin cells to make your own antibiotics,” said Dr. Richard Gallo, chief of the dermatology division at the University of California, San Diego, and “they produce their own antibiotics that kills off bad bacteria.”

Some people have long complained that showering too much makes their skin drier or more prone to flare-ups of, say, eczema, and Dr. Gallo said that scientists are just beginning to understand why. “It’s not just removing the lipids and oils on your skin that’s drying it out,” he said. It could be “removing some of the good bacteria that help maintain a healthy balance of skin.”

 

Now there is definitely something to the fact that daily bathing, especially in the winter, might dry your skin.  As the temperature drops so does the moisture level in the air all of which contributes to drier skin.  I probably don’t even need to point that out – you can feel it.  So if your skin becomes dry, perhaps even flaky and itchy, during the winter should you stop bathing daily?  I’ll leave that decision up to you, but I certainly don’t think that you need it.  Be sure to use a shower wash that contains moisturizing ingredients and make sure the water in the shower isn’t scalding hot.  Hot and very hot water can dry out the skin.  Consider limiting the time you spend in the shower too since spending too much time in the shower can also dry out your skin (and that helps conserve water as well if that is important to you).  NEVER use bar soap to wash your face or body!  Bar soap is highly alkaline so it is very drying.  Immediately after exiting the shower and drying off (and try not to rub your body too strongly with your towel, be gentle) apply a rich moisturizer (my favorite, as I’ve already mentioned in this blog many times, is Trader Joe’s A Midsummer Night’s Cream Extra Dry Formula.  I’m still searching for the perfect hand cream.  If I ever find it I’ll be sure to write about it) all over your body but not your face.  Treating your face is a totally different story.  See below for a tip of treating dry skin on your face during the winter. 

If you find that your face feels very dry or extra dry in the winter forego washing it in the morning (but in the morning only, still wash your face at night).  Instead use a soft washcloth moistened in warm water all over your face in the morning or better yet use a toner that contains moisturizing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid (if the toner has antioxidants in it too even better).  For more information about toners please see my earlier post:  Toner:  What Is It?  Do You Need One?The posts includes some product recommendations as well.

And for more tips on taking care of your skin during the winter please see my post:  Winter Skincare Tips or Don’t Put Away Your Sunscreen.

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74 Responses to “Bathe Everyday – Over Dry Your Skin?”

  1. So my kids have always been right about their inherent desire to NOT bathe every day?!?! Too funny…

    Congrats on Freshly Pressed. 🙂

    • LOL, as a kid I also resented the shower, but I recently got over my addiction of killing the planet and showering 3 times a day… too clean is too bad!

      • spareviewer Says:

        Not bathing everyday is likely to harden the skin. I always understood that desquamation that came from the process of bathing was good. And that it was important for the overall health of the skin as well as preparing the skin to receive moisturizer.

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  3. runtobefit Says:

    I think I would rather people take showers. I wouldn’t mind dry skin if I smell good. 🙂

    http://www.runtobefit.wordpress.com

  4. burning30 Says:

    What works for one person doesn’t work for another! If I put that much lotion on me I would break out everywhere! Good luck with bathing every day!

    I’m a fan of bar soap. So there.

  5. fashionelle Says:

    this is pretty true, i love your website there’s so much you can learn! I just started my blog on fashion so if anything I might try to connect my blog to yours

  6. Dry skin can really hurt and I use moisturizers. I find myself skipping a day here or there to keep it at bay and to always, always, always use hand cream after washing my hands. Nothing worse than having your skin crack open from dryness. Thanks for the interesting post.

  7. I definitely think it’s, as the person above stated, “what works for one person doesn’t work for another.” There are some people that absolutely need to shower everyday and will look greasy otherwise and others who can go days without smelling. There are also people who need to wear deodorant and others who never need to wear it because they do not smell.

    I’d actually like to see if there have been any studies that examine the human microbiome in terms of odor. For example, what kinds of bacteria do different people have in their armpits? Do some people who will smell without deodorants have particular bacteria that others who won’t smell do not?

    • vintagejenta Says:

      I read somewhere once that chlorophyll kills odor-causing bacteria in our sweat-glands. So people who eat lots of leafy green veggies (or body builders who take chlorophyll pills) probably stink less than people who don’t eat a lot of green stuff.

  8. Taz Delaney Says:

    back in 1972, i learned that proctor & gamble is (and still are), the world’s biggest animal-testing company, so i stopped using their products, including shaving foam. i soon realized that there is absolutely no need for shaving foam or even soap unless it is several day’s growth, use only hot water otherwise.

    then in the late 70s i began to realize that soaping my body really wasn’t necessary to keep body odor down, water works just fine mostly. over the years, the less soap i used the less odor! ask my wife; i can wear the same t-shirt for weeks and it won’t smell at all! i know that flies in the face of what we’ve been taught all our lives to believe, but it is true.

    in the late 1980s, amy’s chemist grandpa told us that the whole lotion thing is a scam and advised us to see if we could find any lotions which do not contain petroleum or alcohol as ingredients. those ingredients cannot possibly do anything but dry the skin, though they feel good for a few minutes…

    when i read that jimmy carter of the pearly whites doesn’t use toothpaste, just an occasional dash of baking soda; that was enough for me. haven’t used it for 20 years.

    then about a decade ago, stopped shampooing my hair but about once a week or less. guess what, hair loss slowed and some came back!

    we both have drastically lessened our use of these useless or worse items. it saves us a couple thousand bucks a year and we pollute the world less.

  9. CrystalSpins Says:

    In general, I bathe every other day and I usually smell quite lovely.

    Crystal
    http://www.crystalspins.com

  10. This is why I opt out of public transportation in the city…Just sayin’

    Blessings,

    Ava
    xox

  11. kittymartine Says:

    I don’t take a full on bath every day, can’t be too stinky as my hubby never complains!

    http://katrinemartine.wordpress.com/

    *British Texan Blend*

  12. tiallarising Says:

    Very interesting post! I always have dry skin, but just putting on hand creams seem to do the trick! 🙂

  13. thetinfoilhatsociety Says:

    The body strives for homeostasis — that is, it wants to stay in the same condition. Applied to body oils, it means that if you bathe every day with body bars or such (they aren’t soaps, they’re detergents, and made from petrochemicals to boot), and wash your hair with shampoo (ditto), you will actually increase the production of oils and by default the numbers of bacteria that eat those oils. Soaps don’t strip the skin in the manner that those things do; soaps contain glycerin (which is an integral part of the formation of the soap) which attracts humidity to it and keeps your skin moister. Your body doesn’t immediately start secreting more oil to replace that which you just stripped off, so your over all oiliness (and odor) are less.

    I started making my own soap two years ago, after I realized how simple it is, and began making my own ‘shampoo’ a year ago. I also switched to a deodorant with natural ingredients (herbs, clay, etc) a year ago. There was a definite oiliness curve with the shampoo and the deodorant. It took about two weeks before my hair quit looking oily — and I’m a dry skinned person — by the next morning. Now, I can go two days without shampooing (well, it’s a natural liquid soap, really) before that same oiliness shows up. My husband recently switched to my shampoo, and is amazed as well; he had the exact same results. Regarding the deoderant vs. antiperspirant, I had about a month of adjustment. I work in a trauma center, as well as working in my garden daily, and while I do have a faint odor at the end of the day, it’s not an overpowering thing by any means. DH, who would be the first to tease me and comment on it if he noticed it,says nothing unless for some reason I haven’t bathed first thing and it’s more than a day.

    Now, to be honest, I don’t shower daily in the winter, but I do wash the potentially smellier parts daily. My skin is too dry, and our house too cold, to do otherwise.

    Not only am I being kinder to my skin, but I am saving vast amounts of money by making my own soaps and shampoos. You should really try it — or at least look into it more, from a source that doesn’t include something published by the cosmetics industry, which has a vested financial interest in you being captive to their products and promoting their use.

  14. Ultimately, it depends on geography. In a subtropical city like Hong Kong here, there is no choice but to shower every day in summer (March to mid-October) where the soupy heat hovers around 30degC (86degF) at 99% relative humidity. Winter here is around 16-19degC (60-66degF), but because of the grime and over-the-top pollution, it’s showers all round.

    Back in London (UK) where I grew up, I would take baths every day in summer (depending on the activities I have done), but I’d be brain-damaged to take baths daily in winter – I’d be broken bits like a graham cracker.

  15. Rick Shaw Says:

    Interesting, indeed. I still stand by the fact that you should not use anti-perspirant deodorant because of the reports I’ve read about how prolonged usage can damage your sweat glands. But a good natural deodorant, like thetinfoilhatsociety mentioned, is fine.

    As for a hand cream, my mother speaks very highly of Bath and Bodyworks’ Lemon Hand Cream. I can’t remember the exact name of it, sadly, but she says it does wonders for her dry, cracked, hands.

    ~Rick Shaw
    http://redefiningrickshaw.wordpress.com/

  16. mat Says:

    I’d rather have a bit dryer skin and not smell like a stinky egg to be honest…:)

    http://www.tulumboutiquehotels.com/s-and-s-hip-hotel.html

  17. Noelle Says:

    Very interesting post! I’ve certainly experienced this phenomenon firsthand – in the winter, no matter how I attempt to change my showering habits, I nearly always have a problem with incredibly dry skin. It mainly affects my face – where my skin tends to be the most sensitive – but it can be an all-over effect as well, depending on the circumstances.

    My hair admittedly looks pretty awful if I don’t wash it every day, but in the winter months, I’ll stick a hat over it every so often and go without showering. When I do shower, I make an effort to keep it brief, and I keep the water at a reasonable temperature. The products used can make a huge difference as well – I’ve been using Aveeno moisturizing body wash on my face and body, and my skin hasn’t been overly dry or itchy in ages!

  18. TinaCortina Says:

    Hello

    I really don’t understand why bathing daily is considered the norm and definitely think that over-bathing contributes to skin allergies as do many of the ‘moisturising treatments’ you need to take for compensation to overbathing.

    I would also say the need to bathe every day is probably a function of the ‘house temperature’ being kept too high.

    I guess I shower once or twice a week and bathe maybe once a week, but consider that plenty unless living in a high humidity area, are involved in daily sports or other activities that lead to high perspiration on a daily basis.

    The only ones that really want you to do all this are the marketeers!

    Of course if you smell, you need to take action, but those of us that have a partner and lots of friends don’t really need to worry!!! If you don’t have lots of friends then you know what to try first!

    Hugs Tina xx

    TinaCortina
    http://tinacortina.wordpress.com/

  19. Maybe if you shower daily, just skip soap all over the body (just cleanse the essential areas)? My absolute favorite lotion is: Desert Essence Organics Body Care Coconut Hand and Body Lotion .. I have never found anything better. Will give the TJ’s one a try though! Thanks for the info 😉

  20. toddlernewtrition2010 Says:

    MARY KAY HAS AN EXCELLENT HAND CREAM. iT ALSO COMES W/ A THREE-STEP PROCESS: THE HAND SOFTENER, SALT SCRUB AND FINALLY HAND CREAM. THE SCENT I USE IS CITRUS.

  21. Renee Fisher Says:

    Hair does much better without daily washing. And unless you put a lot of “product” on it or sweat a lot, once a week is quite enough. I stopped using deoderant in all but the worst summer days, because of the aluminum. And daily baths aren’t necessary unless you work in a coal mine or dig ditches all day. Excessive washing simply dries everything out.

  22. Alex Says:

    Up until recently I thought I’d found the best hand lotion/nail cream in Aveda, but I have to report that since Christmas, when my sister bought me di Palomo White Grape with Aloe hand cream/nail cream, I have to adjust my position.

    It does not leave a greasy, unpleasant residue, but soaks into the skin and has a heavenly, non-intrusive fragrance.

    It is so good, it has pride of place beside my bed and that’s saying something.

    For anyone interested, the website on the back of the pack is http://www.dipalomo.com.

    Alex

  23. whenquiet Says:

    Apply Vaseline to feet at night, slip on cotton socks, sleep, wake up to smooth feet.
    Italian products: Bottega Verde Vanilla and Cardamon Body Lotion and Hamman Body Cream(myrrh)
    Neutrogena Sesame Body Oil
    Lush Melting Marshmallow Moment with cocoa butter…only 7.90 Swiss francs..about $8.00
    Extra virgin olive oil for the body, hair and scalp…massage nightly.
    I have menopausal skin(tends to be ashy)
    Thank you for your article.

  24. Really interesting post – I’ve never really considered the effect good bacteria can have on our skin.

  25. archiegrrl Says:

    I shower every-other day, as a compromise between my dry skin and fine, somewhat oily hair. My skin is still dry, unless I moisturize. I have started using a moisturizer with lactic acid, Amlactin, usually found near the pharmacy. It’s not very perfumed, but does a great job of keeping my skin smooth and soft, even in the dry winter of Utah! I also have sensitive skin and issues with acne, so the only moisturizer I have used on my face for years is baby lotion.

    As for the use of bar soap, my dermatologist actually recommended Lever 2000 for washing my face — he said something along the lines of, “It’s just Dove with an antibacterial thrown in.” It does a great job without drying my face out. And when my face is super dry from the combination of winter and my acne medication? Vaseline! Another dermatologist recommendation, I always thought it would make me break out (like everything else in the world), but putting a little on dry patches before bed makes the flaky skin disappear.

  26. sara Says:

    I’ve always been an advocate of not bathing/showering daily. More like every other day. Just throwing in my two cents…

  27. Mayo Says:

    One of the ways to prevent dry skin is to use chemical-free skin care products. Research is showing that a buildup of chemicals on the skin can cause acne, dry skin and skin cancer.

    To find chemical-free products, read labels, research ingredients and read as many skin care product reviews as possible.

    Here’s a link to a site with unbiased reviews of chemical-free and organic skin care. http://www.best-mens-skin-care.com/skin-care-product-reviews.html

  28. Why would you rather have dirty skin than dry skin?

  29. achilliad Says:

    Great job..kudos on gettng “pressed” like an olive to make olive OIL! 🙂
    Observation: when I decided to gro “dreads” that required me to “shampoo” my hair in the traditional manner only only once-a-month so that the ends would “lock” and stay locked. I get my new growth professionally “done” onece ever three months or so ( as my small budget allows nowadays), you know what? my hair has never been healthier ( at age 57), and my locks are long as the day in summertime ane get copious compliments.
    I grew up with eczema – no trace of it now with a happy healthy scalp. (of course I stay away from eating what I am allergic to also). To your point, less shampooing keeps the natural oils our skin needs if you learn your body because every”body” is different. Cheers.
    http://www.achilliad.wordpress.com

  30. Sunflowerdiva Says:

    I bathe or shower every day. Being clean is something I absolutely must be! I have dry skin everywhere but my face, and just sometimes use moisturizers. I’d rather be clean than dirty, dry skin or not.

  31. lbwong Says:

    Great post! Although I have dry skin, daily showers are more than just hygiene to me–it wakes me up! Perhaps the other option is to move to humid climates like Hawaii or Mexico 🙂 Anyone else?!? Congrats on Freshly Pressed! LB

  32. I’m not a grimy person, but I usually can’t live with myself if I don’t shower daily. You know how you just feel better after a good shower?

    I’ll just have to step my game up on the post shower moisturizing.

    Great advice! Thanks for sharing.

    -T

  33. I definitely don’t take a shower every day, and I don’t smell! My hair is quite dry, so it doesn’t need to be washed every day for one thing. I’m also just not active enough on a daily basis to work up a smell, so I just stay hygienic and shower every day or so (unless rigorous exercise or something extra messy was involved). The only thing I wash daily is my face, which I wash with an all natural, soap free, preservative free, clay based cleanser from Lush Cosmetics (where I used to work).

    I DO use deodorant everyday, but I have a little light to cast on why people don’t. Most deodorants that you get at the drug store contain aluminum which is bad for you. It’s an important antiperspirant, though, so it clogs your pores and stops you from sweating. However, because sweating is important to get toxins out of your body, the gross stuff ends up getting pushed out in other places. You may not notice it if you’ve always been using normal deodorant, but it happens. Most people who switch to all natural deodorants (a nicer, friendlier scent than no deodorant at all) notice that they sweat A LOT and smell REALLY BAD for the first week or two because their body pushes everything sitting just beneath the arm pit out, but then they tend to notice that they generally sweat less and feel more balanced than before. A girl I used to work with had been using all natural deodorant for two years and when she switched back to antiperspirant she freaked out because it gave her hotflashes and made her sweat everywhere but her armpits. Pretty crazy, huh?

  34. Hannah Says:

    TOO much of something is not good!:)

  35. Interesting post! Indeed it really is true that our skin gets dry by taking a bath everyday, but there’s a lot of remedies to avoid having such dry skin. Nothing gets better than feeling fresh and clean everyday.

  36. go2store Says:

    Very interesting post! If the skin is dry, but just the creams seem to do the trick!

  37. Evie Garone Says:

    I think if you talk to Drs. it isn’t the greatest thing to bathe everyday. If it’s smell/hygiene you can bathe those areas specially! I do have extra dry skin and it does get drier by bathing/showering too much Then it peels and hurts.! I guess it’s all personal preference! Creams & shaving legs make me itch! It’s hard! If I don’t do anything strenuous I don’t need to bathe/shower every day!

    evelyngarone.com

  38. Jule1 Says:

    It’s not necessary to bathe every day, especially in fall/winter/spring if you’re not sweating. In summer I do, but I tend to sweat. I often rinse my hair, as it gets flat after I sleep, and my head gets hot and it sweats, so it’s necessary. I also do what my mother referred to as a “PTA”, Pits, Tits and Ass wipedown. Especially under the tits, as that’s where I get sweaty. My pits don’t usually need it. Of course the vaginal area gets a wipe. But in the winter I can go 2 days w/out a full shower and it really does make a difference in the dry skin area. BIG difference.

  39. I don’t shower everyday, because I don’t need to!
    I don’t feel dirty, or smelly, or greasy for about 2 days after showering if I wash my face and wear deodorant and wear clean clothes.
    My hair starts to get a little greasy, but I put it in a ponytail or headband and you can’t tell.
    And if it’s a hot day or I’ve been active I might need to shower before I normally would.
    I have pimples so I use anti-acne stuff on my face, and if I use too much of certain products it does dry out my face, but I use moisturiser so it’s fine.
    The more you bathe, the more you NEED to bathe – maybe if you didn’t wash your hair every day, it wouldn’t get oily so quick, so you wouldn’t need to wash it every day… it makes extra oil to compensate for being stripped of all its oils, right?
    Congrats on being freshly pressed 🙂

  40. raybanmy Says:

    I think its better to bath if u feel dirty, or when someone tells u u r dirty

  41. Quite interesting. I do agree that showering everyday can dry the skin. In the winter, I wash my legs every other day since I have bouts of eczema. Yes, I know the water still runs over my legs in the shower. I haven’t quite figured how not to let that happen. :0 Not washing everyday, though, can lead to staph infections if one unfortunately happens to be hospitalized, since staph happily lives in hospitals. So, it’s up to the individual.

  42. blonderover Says:

    I grew up living in a house with a well for water – and it had a LOT of iron and other minerals in it (Our white bathtub turned orange after a week of my family of 4 showering. It got cleaned a lot.) Because of the limited water supply, Mum, my brother and I showered every other day (Oh the mornings when shower days complied all together!) Dad showered every day, but he stank at the end of the day, pit stick or no.

    I shower every other day unless I get really dirty or sweaty (I have some pretty wicked BO, unfortunately). I had trained my body to be okay with that, but lately my fine, oily hair hasn’t been keen on the new low-pressure shower head. My hair doesn’t rinse clean enough. But washing it every day dries it out. But using conditioner makes it oily by the end of the day. So really, it’s gross.

    Really, as long as you’re clean and have good personal hygeiene, how often you shower is really up to you. Just please, be kind to everyone else’s nose! 🙂

  43. sayitinasong Says:

    LOL! How lazy does one have to be not to wash every day???!! Weird. You would think everyone would WANT to wash and be clean… besides, with all the products that are available today.. you would thing EVERYONE would be able to find a moisturizer etc to suit them.

  44. Great, no-nonsense write-up on skin care. Thanks for taking the time.

  45. אייפון Says:

    Not only am I being kinder to my skin, but I am saving vast amounts of money by making my own soaps and shampoos. You should really try it — or at least look into it more, from a source that doesn’t include something published by the cosmetics industry, which has a vested financial interest in you being captive to their products and promoting their use.

  46. Look at the wild animals none of them bathes everyday!

  47. rtcrita Says:

    Yes, this is probably a choice made on an individual’s personal needs and skin conditions. Everyone is different. Sometimes, it takes a lot of experimenting before you find what works for you. I say, as long as your not offensive around others, do what is right for you. Skin needs change with age, temperature, and season. It’s a blessing when you find something that is working and keeps you feeling great!

  48. I don’t shower every day, don’t wash my hair more than once a week, don’t smell bad. Sometime you should do the experiment that I did in my bacteriology course in college regarding the change in the ecosystem on your skin when you use antibacterial products. The resultant shift towards staph and strep organisms produces a skin that is likely to provide you with infection if you get a cut or abrasion, and the by-products of those particular strains of bacteria are horrific in their odor. The more of the product you use, the worse you smell.

    The question one has to ask after reading this post is, “How to take you seriously when you don’t apparently know the difference between the worlds “debased” and “debunked”?”

  49. Summer Says:

    many people don’t realize that the weather has a great affect on their skin!!

  50. Purple Says:

    I live and work in a tropical country. It is the culture, the norm and a must to bath twice a day – in the morning before going to work and in the evening before going to bed. In one instance, I had a meeting with two people based in the US. It was probably winter in their country that time. When they arrived in my office, I met them for almost an hour and I was getting dizzy because of the unpleasant smell from these visitors. I wanted to puke right there. I guessed that they haven’t took a bath for a long time.

    Lesson: It doesn’t matter if you take a bath everyday or not during winter because I have no freaking idea if you could tolerate the cold or not. Should you visit another country, please consider taking a bath everyday. When in Rome, do what the Romans do…

    • thetinfoilhatsociety Says:

      When I lived in Hawaii, I did just that. Hilo is a hot, muggy place. I hated it, everything smelled like mildew.

      Your smelly people might have been meth users; it really makes people smell bad, no matter how much they bathe. I’ve had fairly extensive experience with that, since I work in health care and live in an area where its use is common. The chemicals come out of their pores, and no amount of washing is going to make it go away.

  51. debocrat Says:

    I heard this years ago on the Today show. I work at home, so I don’t actually have to bathe every day. I prefer to wash the “pertinent parts” and go for two or three days, sometimes four, without actually having a bath. My mother had a phobia of showers, and was unable to get in and out of a tub. She sponge bathed every day, always smelled great, and had beautiful skin until she died. She washed her hair standing up at the kitchen sink. I guess I’m more like her than my sister, who must shower before she even has coffee in the morning.

  52. Tamara Says:

    Bravo to this! I am female and I have very dry, very pale, very unoily reactive sensitive skin. I never bathe, I only shower and that I do every two or three days, unless I’ve been engaged in something particularly physical that causes me to break a sweat all over. I’ve tried the daily thing and my skin gets so dry and itchy! Also too I work on a campus that is increasingly asking people to not use artificial scents, so I tend to just use water and a washcloth. I’ll be looking for the trader joe’s moisturizer up here in Canada. Is it unscented?

  53. antiqueshoes Says:

    have you tried a l’occitane hand cream?
    I’ve heard it works well :] I thought I would invest in one as well.

  54. Perplexed Says:

    I’m really perplexed as to where this info is coming from lately that antiperspirants stop toxins coming out of your body. For one thing, it’s actually a myth that toxins come out with sweat. Second, it isn’t toxins that cause underarm odor, but bacteria on the surface. And it’s simply impossible that toxins are sitting under the armpit skin, waiting to come out! It’s too symbolic an idea of physiology, not based on the reality of it at all.

    I’ve heard about people supposedly switching from strong, anti-perspirants to gentler, natural deodorants and experiencing increased smell then a leveling out. I do think in some cases, it’s simply because they are using a less effective deodorant, and quite possibly they become accustomed to the smell, rather than it lessening. That can’t be ruled out.

    Giving benefit of the doubt that this may happen to some people just as they report, then I would hazard a guess that the bacterial ecology of the armpit is disrupted by the stronger deodorant, and switching to a weaker deodorant (or stopping using deodorant), the bacteria temporarily proliferate, before a balance is eventually found. Some people will find they don’t need as strong a deodorant as they thought, or one with anti-perspirant properties.

    I know someone who has never used deodorant (and only has a mild odor, not something I consider unpleasant) who tried using a gentle, herbal deodorant (non-antiperspirant) and then stopped again. They experienced an intense odor after stopping that they never had before. I suspect the above scenario about the bacterial ecology is the case for them too, and it shows this is not strictly the domain of switching from artificial to natural, but rather stronger to weaker deodorant (or in this case, to nothing).

    If your friend truly had a reaction to the deodorant, then it might be an allergy to it. But again, it can’t be ruled out it was unrelated – another health issue perhaps, hormones, a food that didn’t agree. Having been concerned about using the deodorant, she may have been too quick to link it to any ill feeling she experienced. It’s no so alarming to have been sweating everywhere except the armpits. If something caused sweating, and you were wearing a very effective anti-perspirant, that’s what you would expect.

    Personally, I avoid aluminum in deodorant because I find the question of whether it is a health concern a little fuzzy, and would rather be safe at this point. But I use a natural deodorant containing zinc oxide, which I find acts as a very effective anti-perspirant. Whether or not aluminum in deodorant turns out to be a legitimate health concern, it is not *because* it is an anti-perspirant. This type of information is simply superstition.

  55. A little dirt every now and then doesn’t hurt but an unhygienic person can get into a pretty bad shape. Whatever happens to the bad germs on our skin that we get through contact daily. Do they win the war over the good germs ?! Is it too difficult to take a shower or bath once a day !!!

  56. Not all bacteria should be cleaned, and this is like as a person too clean, he will have the arrival of many diseases. Everything is on both sides, can not go to extremes

    • rebeccaslife Says:

      I was always a once-a-day shower girl, until I had children. When my daughter was little, she developed eczema, and her pediatrician advised us to only bathe her every other day to keep her skin from being so dry. It worked, her eczema lessened and within 6 months was gone altogether. So, now, myself and my kids are all every-other-day bathers. We don’t stink and our skin is awesome.

      My husband, on the other hand, is Italian. Hi MUST shower every day, otherwise he MUST sleep on the couch ;0).

  57. This is a good blog message, I will keep the post in my mind. If you can add more video and pictures can be much better. Because they help much clear understanding. 🙂 thanks Josephus Flavius.

  58. You know I don’t bathe every day, but I do use bar soap when I do…what is a better alternative for your skin.

    Also, I find myself skipping shampooing my hair because my scalp just gets really itchy if I do it too much so I may shampoo twice a week. Is there a better shampoo I can use?

  59. Donna Says:

    Hi,

    I also saw the NY Times article and was greatly intrigued because I have been experiencing itching on my legs since the change of season. It seems to be the most noticeable soon after showering.

    You mentioned not having a hand cream to recommend. I have tried Mary Kay’s Satin Hands and am amazed at how non greasy and effective it is. Best I’ve used next to Just (pronounced Yoost) Marigold.

    Thought I’d share!

  60. I broke out in a rash in college once, and I immediately attributed it to not being clean enough. As it turns out, showering more made it worse, but it took a dermatologist pointing it out for me to realize that I wasn’t dirty, but in fact too clean. As for hand lotion, my mom and sister swear by Crabtree and Evelyn Gardeners Hand Therapy lotion. My mother just gifted me some, but until now I’ve been perfectly happy with Aveno unscented lotion.

  61. rami Says:

    this post helps me understand my facial skin state.
    thanks

  62. Gosh i bathe twice a day …0_O no wonder I’m always dry lol

  63. Ling Lyday Says:

    This is a good blog message, I will keep the post in my mind. If you can add more video and pictures can be much better. Because they help much clear understanding. thanks

  64. roberta Says:

    http://healtcarebeauty.blogspot.com/2010/11/how-to-take-care-of-your-skin.html

    if you have time you can check this out!! it’s interesting too!

  65. I don’t bathe every day as in a full blown bath. But I always wash the important parts, and use deoderant. And no I dont smell nasty ever. Theres no real need to bathe or shower every day unless you live in a hot sticky enviroment or do a dirty job. Ive always believed its bad for you to wash off your natural skins oils all the time. Of course I do bathe (duh) just not daily.


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