Skipping Showers: The Next Hot Beauty Trend?


Image credit: Kesler Tran

Back in the 4th grade, we had a special “health” class where she wheeled in the film projector, and loaded up a film… probably from the early 70′s. The film went over some of the changes us tweens would have to look forward to over the next ten years, you know, stuff like pimples, greasy hair, hair. Anyway, when the subject of personal hygiene came up, the film told us to bathe every other day.

The teacher stopped the projector. “Bathe EVERY DAY.” She said sternly, and somewhat disgusted.

To be honest, I can’t remember my personal hygiene routine at age 9, but one thing was clear, I had to bathe every. single. day. from here on out.

I hadn’t thought much about bathing or not bathing over the years I just did it, every day. When Hurricane Sandy hit, and Rocky and I were without hot water for four days, the first day was ok without bathing, I felt gross, but in light of the circumstances, it was fine. Day two: I felt really icky. Day three: I couldn’t bear myself, and just took a cold shower in an unheated apartment. Not a pleasant experience, but, it did feel great to be clean again.

Why skip the showers?

A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon an article titled 6 Habits That May Be Hurting Rather Than Helping Your Skin, advice from Jennifer Aniston, Ellen Degeneres and Courtney Cox’s aesthetician, Mila Moursi, (who also has a skin care line that includes a $440 lifting serum) advises us to give our skin a break skipping the daily shower and taking a “French Bath” every now and then, and wash only you underarms/feet/you-know-whats, etc. 

“If [your entire body is] showered daily, you’re stripping more oil than you should be. It takes forever to regain and produce those oils again,” says Moursi. ~Beautylish

Also, Refinery29 came out with a post that instructed us how to skip showers, with the N0-Shower Shower. Wondering if that was an April Fool’s joke, sponsored post, or I don’t even know, but it did have similar information to more sincere posts about the dangers of over-washing:

“Many people overbathe and wash too much of the natural oils from their skin,” Dana S. Simpler, M.D., an internist at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, tells HealthySelf. “In fact, there is a medical condition called ‘Winter Itch’ for the dry, itchy rash some people get in the winter [from showering too often].” ~Self

The logic behind not bathing every day makes sense, after all, how many of us actually engage in truly dirty work? Me, the one who sits at a computer part of the day, and part of the day spends cuddling with a regularly bathed baby, can honestly say the filth I build up throughout the day wouldn’t require that 20-minute-almost-boiling-sccrubfest I usually call a shower.

Is not bathing everyday really that crazy?

I brought this up with a group of friends to gage their reaction to the idea of not showering. They all almost threw up, (not really, but kind of) and gave reasons why they absolutely needed to shower every day.

 …it wasn’t sooo long ago people would almost throw up you talked about not washing your hair every day.

In reality, it wasn’t sooo long ago when people would almost throw up you talked about not washing your hair every day. Or twice a day if you went to the gym. I remember my hairstylist begging me to not wash my hair every day, as she rolled out a whole arsenal of options to keep my hair looking fresh and not-greasy  (from expensive hair powder to corn starch).  Nowadays? Some women with gorgeous locks talk about how they’ve gone down to washing their hair once a week. It’s totally normal not to wash your hair every day now. But it wasn’t always.

Perhaps it’s just a matter of having the right products? Can you imagine bath wipes? To add to our collection of diaper wipes, boogie wipes, hand wipes, makeup removing wipes, stain removing wipes for our clothes, what’s one more wipe? Maybe there will be a super gentle waterless refreshing creme like Vichy’s 3-in-1 cleanser.  All I’m saying, is that there are enough product possibilities to make forgoing daily showers a marketer’s dream.

So, if skipping showers is one of Jennifer Aniston’s secrets to how she looks the same as she did twenty years ago… is it possible that the rest of us [albeit begrudgingly]might follow suit?

jennineSkipping Showers: The Next Hot Beauty Trend?

Comments 15

  1. save. spend. splurge.

    In the summer I shower and wash my hair a lot more frequently than in the winter.

    In general, I wash my hair twice a week and bathe every other day. My skin has never felt better and my hair is not dried out at all — I only wash it with John Masters organics shampoo (the vanilla sage zinc one) and I find that if I wash it under the tap in a sink, I lose a LOT less hair than if I do it under a shower head.. not sure why that is.

    I have serious eczema as well, and I know if I get under that warm water too often, the water strips my skin and I get serious rashes. It’s pretty bad in the winter, so when I do bathe I also slather on a lot of body cream.

    As for hair washing, I wash my hair when it starts to feel flat / greasy, which averages out to twice a week. Sometimes I wash it on the third day, sometimes fourth.. it depends on how much oil I produce (and sweat I produce) during those days.

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      In my research, I read that there is a link to eczema and daily showers… we’ve all been taught that daily showers was more healthy, but it seems like it’s not so much! That said, I’ve yet to actually try it on the days I leave the house.

  2. paisleyapron

    Anyone who promotes not showering daily has never lived in a hot and humid climate. Sweat is not good when it stays on my skin and my dermatologist agrees with me. If I don’t wash once (and often twice) daily when it is the hot season, I break out miserably, all over with heat rash and pimples. I would love to not have to shower so often, but sweaty clothes need to be changed and sweaty skin needs to be washed.

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      Whenever I go to Hawaii, I get a heat rash (I’m used to living in the dry climates of California)… Even though I took daily showers, the powder was the thing that always helped with that. But, I guess if you live in humid climates, battling dry skin isn’t really a problem!


    I don´t use soap in my shower daily, only every other day. Use Lush soap and baby oil afterwards. I find it better than any body cream.
    When it gets hot I have to shower a few times a day, but always just water.
    Loveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee and sunshine.

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      Ooh LUSH soap has a wonderful smell to it! Good point about rinsing every other day. That’s what I do with Jasper!

  4. AngieMontreal

    OK…we’re about to get personal I guess!

    When I was growing up my family lived in a REALLY small town (parents still live there) and we were not connected to a municipal water source. Meaning my dad had to haul all our water using a big truck with a giant water tank on the back that we shared with my grandparents who lived across the street. We lived like this until I was about 13, and I was strictly only ALLOWED to shower every second day. I imagine that my becoming a teenager, with my sister not far behind me, was part of the catalyst for them to decide to pay to get the municipal water put in (two teenage girls with a limited water supply?! NIGHTMARE). I remember my mom crying because they had to tear up the entire front yard to put the pipes in (she’s a gardening fan)

    So, for me that was just the way I grew up, and have kept up with this every second day showering thing, because it seems normal to me. And I shampoo every second day as well (less with short hair, but it seems to be a must with long hair).

    All that to say…I am now 33 and really have no wrinkles. I also rarely wear makeup so maybe that’s a factor too, and I only wash my face on non-shower days with warm (not hot) water…and no soap of any kind on my face. Ever.

    People have started commenting on the lack of wrinkles (weird, I know) which has got me thinking about it more and more… and I really think letting my natural body oils do their thing has been a big part of the reason. But that’s not really based on anything (like um…idk, science) other than what I THINK it could be :)

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      Oh wow… I had a friend who also lived off the municipal grid, and they had an OUTHOUSE. It wasn’t that bad actually. But yeah, I grew up in Southern California during a particularly bad drought, people weren’t allowed to water their lawns, or flush their toilets every time. Showers? Well we just had those shower heads that limited the water flow. It wasn’t very luxurious.

      Interestingly enough, I’m finding through this post a lot of people don’t take showers every day! And you do look really young! You do have gorgeous skin if memory serves me correctly!

  5. ...love Maegan

    Lol!! Yeah. The last time I showered every day was in high school. Then I realized my body was better off with less soap & scrubbing. Usually every other day for me unless it’s hot/sweaty/summer/etc. and I try to go 3 days (or as long as I can) without washing my hair (& sometimes a shower too, but shh, don’t tell ;)

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      Oh my… I didn’t even try it until this week, and you’re right, skin reacts well if you let it rest every now and then. I really had no idea so many people were secretly not taking showers!

  6. Dora

    I think we were shown the exact same dodgy film at school!!! I try to have one cat-shower day per week for my skin to regenerate from the dehydrating showers. Also, I often just run water through my hair, giving my hair more healthy shine than any product ever could. The fewer chemicals I use on my body, the better it feels.

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  7. Pingback: 10 Things I Learned About Style From Being a Mom | The Coveted®

  8. Polly Milanova

    I think the problems daily showering can bring is not about how often you shower but about how you do it. I can’t go a day without showering and my skin is fine but one big note - I do not use skin cleaning/softening/whatever products when I shower. Water is not bad for your skin - but all the shower gels, lotions, etc. which we use to make our skin look nice and feel soft are absolutely terrible for it. I mean, it’s all just chemicals and scents, why do we rely on them so much? Nothing bad can happen to your skin if you pour water on it daily.. Think about it :)

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