We all know April showers bring May flowers, but did you know that your April showers can also bring healthy, beautiful skin? As you break out the shorts, dresses, and bathing suits for the spring and summer months, follow our top shower hacks to keep your skin in tip-top shape. Keep reading to find out how to get the most out of your time in the shower.
Tip 1 – Set the Right Temperature for Your Skin
Hot showers may feel good, but they can also strip the moisture from your skin. By taking a shower with lukewarm or cool water, you can help your skin retain more moisture. In addition to being better for your skin, some research indicates that cool showers may also improve your mood.
Tip 2 – Take Shorter Showers
The longer you spend in the shower, the more moisture is stripped from the skin. Studies show that five to ten minutes is the ideal amount of time to stay in the shower. Plus, it’s better for the environment to spend less time in the shower, so it’s a win-win.
Tip 3 – Use the Right Skincare Products
In most cases, you want to use a gentle cleanser in the shower. If you have dry or sensitive skin, you may want to choose a moisturizing liquid body wash or gel. Gentle bar soaps may offer the same results, but they tend to be more drying. In addition to using a gentle body wash or bar soap, you may want to incorporate a gentle exfoliant to remove dry skin and dead cells, but you don’t want to over-exfoliate. According to Dr. Carmen Julian of U.S. Dermatology Partners Mueller in Austin, Texas, “One of the simplest changes that can improve your skin health is getting rid of your loofah. Not only do these cleaning tools strip away the outer layer of skin, but they’re also a breeding ground for bacteria. Instead, use a soft washcloth to clean your body and use a sugar scrub a few times a week.”
Tip 4 – Care for Your Hair
Washing hair is all about achieving balance. You want to keep your hair clean without stripping moisture, leading to dry, brittle locks. If you have naturally dry hair, you should only be washing a few times a week. If you have oily hair or work out frequently, you may need to wash more often. Generally, pay attention to your hair. If it seems dry, skip a wash. If your hair looks or feels oily, wash it more often. If you have dry or color-treated hair, you may want to consider using a hair oil or mask once a week. Even if you have normal or oily hair, using a moisturizing treatment on hair periodically can help prevent excess oil production and keep your hair healthy. If you shave in the shower, apply your hair oil or mask first and allow it to be absorbed while you shave.
Tip 5 – Create an Aromatherapy Spa at Home
Aromatherapy is a great way to turn your shower into your daily relaxation time. You can place plants like lavender or eucalyptus in your shower. Their scent will be released by the steam from your shower. If you prefer, you can buy fresh bunches of rosemary, lavender, eucalyptus, or other aromatic plants and hang them from your showerhead.
Tip 6 – Shave at the End of Your Shower & Use the Right Products
If you shave in the shower, you should wait until the end because the moisture and steam will soften the hair. At the end of the shower, the hair is soft and the pores are open, leading to less skin irritation as you shave. Razor blades should be in good condition and replaced often to minimize the risk of cutting or irritating the skin. You should also shave with the grain of the hair to avoid pulling or snagging hair. While shaving cream is a great way to protect skin from being damaged by a razor, shaving oil is another option that delivers smooth skin and increased moisture. You can purchase oils made for shaving from your local cosmetics supply store or your barber shop. Apply a small amount of shaving oil and take care not to slip if the oil gets on the shower floor.
Tip 7 – Shower at Nighttime
After a long day, your skin is covered in germs, pollen, and other pollutants and irritants from the day. Taking a shower before bed removes all of this before you sleep. This can be especially beneficial for people with allergies who can experience skin irritation or respiratory inflammation from breathing in allergens on the skin overnight. Additionally, research suggests that the change in body temperature that occurs after showering can make it easier to fall asleep. During the day, your temperature generally rises, but as you start to fall asleep, your temperature goes down. Taking a warm shower increases your body temperature. Then, getting out of the shower causes your temperature to decrease, mimicking the natural changes in the body before sleep and making it easier to fall asleep.
Tip 8 – Dry Off Right
Drying off with rough towels can irritate the skin. Instead, use a soft towel and pat skin dry. To remove water from your hair, gently wring out excess moisture and wrap it in a towel for about five to ten minutes. Leaving your hair in a towel for too long can pull or damage the hair.
Tip 9 – Moisturize Immediately After Showering
According to Dr. Carmen, “Immediately after your shower is the ideal time to apply face and body moisturizers. Your skin is clean, and the steam from your shower has opened your pores. Within five minutes of showering, apply your facial serums or moisturizers and slather on body lotion. This helps retain the moisture from your shower. You may even want to consider using an in-shower moisturizer which is designed to be applied directly onto your damp skin.”
Visit U.S. Dermatology Partners
If you’re interested in learning more about how to care for your skin and make the most of your daily shower, the U.S. Dermatology Partners team is here to help. When you visit one of our knowledgeable dermatologists, they will partner with you to develop the ideal skincare routine to keep your skin healthy. To get started, you can complete our simple online form. Once we receive your request, we’ll be in touch to set up your appointment with our dermatologist.
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