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Are hot showers bad for the skin?

Okay, I agree hot showers are relaxing and they feel soothing and calming, release muscle tension and clear up your mind, specially after a hectic day or if it is cold outside, but does taking a hot shower comes with a price for the skin?

The epidermis, outer layer of the skin is mostly composed of skin cells known as keratinocytes which defend the skin against the environmental hazards and also help the skin to retain moisture.

To do this the skin produces an oil like substance called sebum. Both the skin cells and sebum get affected when you take a hot shower. The sebum softens with the high water temperature which strips away the skin’s natural lipids that maintain the skin moisturized.

To make things even worse the use of harsh soaps dissolve the remaining lipids and the skin is left itchy and dry. Even more so if you use bar soaps which tend to be more alkaline.

To avoid skin dryness when showering:

  • Shower with warm water, enough to be comfortable to enjoy your shower but not too hot to leave your skin vulnerable to sensitivities and dryness.
  • Select a shower gel that is PH balanced and is free of sulfates or harsh surfactants (foaming agents)they over dry the skin.
  • After stepping out of the shower, pat dry leaving the skin a little moist and apply a body cream or oil within 3 minutes, some of my favorites for the body are sweet almond oil, coconut, or grape seed oil.

The oil or cream will help to occlude or seal the water into the skin and replace some of the lipids that the skin lost during showering, protecting the skin from dehydration and making it feel soft and comfortably hydrated.

Thank you very much for being here.

Until next time,

Dora Salazar

Medical Aesthetician

Founder of Zkin Fix Skincare

 

 

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