There’s nothing like the sensation of warm, comforting water washing over your tired body after another long day. But if your skin feels dry or dull once you step out—your shower habits might be inadvertently damaging your skin.
Despite your best efforts, it’s common to have skincare habits that are quietly sabotaging your skin. But here are six common shower mistakes that you can stop doing now and that your skin will thank you for:
#1 Your Shower Is Too Hot
A long, hot shower feels so good—especially when it’s 10 degrees outside! But if you’re steaming up the mirror, that’s probably a good sign that your water temperature is too high, removing the natural oils in your skin, and leaving it feeling dry and itchy. Keep the temperature warm and try keeping your time in the shower to under 10 minutes.
#2 You Wash Your Face In The Shower
While it might be tempting to wash your body head-to-toe in the shower, washing your face separately in your sink ensures the water temperature is “just right”. It also means you can really slow down and take the time to pamper your face with your ultimate skin-supportive ritual.
#3 Waiting Too Long Post-Shower to Moisturize
The best time to moisturize your body is after you’ve turned off the water but before you’ve completely toweled off. Lotion, cream, or any moisturizer works by trapping the moisture in your skin and by applying moisturizer within a few minutes of drying off. In fact, waiting any longer than three minutes can cause your skin to lose precious moisture to the air.
#4 Not Replacing Your Loofah Often Enough
Loofahs are great for scrubbing, but they do grow bacteria and mold and should be thrown out after four weeks. And although it’s convenient to store your loofah in the shower, give it a squeeze out after each use and hang it to dry in cool air. Lingering moisture will encourage bacterial growth—nobody wants that!
#5 Not Drying Your Towel Properly
Damp towels can be a breeding ground for bacteria and mold which is why it’s a good idea to change your towel at least once a week. Also, make sure it dries completely between uses by spreading it out over a towel rack (rather than on a hook) to help it dry properly.
#6 You’re Scrubbing Too Hard
While cleansing and exfoliating are certainly important, less is definitely more. Overdoing it too often can actually strip away your body’s natural oils. Cleanse once a day (perhaps when you remove your makeup) with a creamy or oil-based cleanser and use a gentle exfoliator 2-3 times/week (avoid ones that are too gritty). That way you’ll keep more of your own moisturizing oils and avoid irritating your skin.