If you're like most people, you've been taking baths since you were a baby. For some people, this bath routine includes using shower gel to wash their skin. But is it okay to use this form of soap every day? We've researched this topic and have come up with the answer.
Most shower gels aren't very moisturizing, so using them every day could eventually dry your skin out. Consider using shower gel every other day, using a more moisturizing form of soap for the in-between days. If you want to use it every day, use an especially moisturizing gel, or apply moisturizing lotion frequently.
Your skin is important and should be treated well. This guide will explain what you should look for in moisturizing soap and products, the pros and cons of shower gel, examples of helpful products, and answers to other common questions about cleaning your body. Here we go!
Should you use shower gel every day?
The biggest issue with using shower gel every day is that it will eventually dry out your skin. Dry skin is marked by itchiness, flakiness, or general discomfort. This is especially common if you live in a dry area or during the winter when there is low air humidity. If you're experiencing dry skin, the first thing you should do is check if your preferred soap contains moisturizers.
Many soap products that are advertised as moisturizing use specific products to earn that label. This is important because the process of cleaning your body includes breaking up and dissolving the sweat and oils on your skin. This sweat and oil can mix with dirt or bacteria to cause odor or sickness.
So, your preferred method of cleansing -- whether by bar soap, shower gel, or body wash -- uses detergent or some other method to eliminate the harmful materials from your skin. Unless that type of cleanser is actively replacing the moisture in your skin, you're left with uncomfortable dryness. Most moisturizing products will contain some type of emollient, a word that means soother or softener.
There are two main types of moisturizing that fall under the umbrella of emollients: lipids and occulents. Lipids are intended to replace the oil on your skin with healthy oil. If you see a moisturizer with olive oil, almond oil, shea butter, jojoba oil, or many others, this means it's using lipids to help your skin feel better.
On the other hand, a moisturizer with occulents traps moisture in your skin by creating an outer layer. It also softens and soothes dry skin, no matter the cause. These products are generally considered to be more helpful to long-term skin dryness problems such as eczema, psoriasis, or other health-related dryness.
Moisturizing shower gels
Shower gels do not generally contain these emollients. Or, if they do, they don't have enough to make a difference. If you're going to use a shower gel every day, make sure they contain some form of emollients, like the ones shown below.
This one uses glycerin, a popular lipid emollient. It's reasonably priced and gentle on skin.
This nourishing gel will leave you feeling refreshed and clean yet moisturized.
Use Lotion After Showering
Want to stick with a normal shower gel? Then plan on using an additional moisturizing lotion frequently. The benefit of using a moisturizing form of soap is that you kill two birds with one stone. But if you want to stick with your shower gel, your skin will feel better if you add some type of emollient afterward.
Want more recommendations for a shower gel that will moisturize your skin? Read this article next: "13 Best Shower Gels For Dry Skin."
What Are The Benefits Of Shower Gel?
It might not sound like there are any good things about shower gel, but there are! For starters, shower gels are some of the most luxurious forms of soap. They generally are fragrant and colorful, like the ones shown below.
In addition to delightful fragrances, shower gels are beneficial because they often contain other benefits, such as exfoliating scrub beads or some are extra-moisturizing. Essential oils and other helpful ingredients are sometimes included.
Feel free to use shower gel frequently! It can be a useful product if you use it correctly. But make sure your skin is getting enough moisture no matter what type of product you use.
Should you use your shower gel to wash your hair? This article has the answer: "Can Shower Gel Be Used As Shampoo?"
Is Shower Gel Better Than Soap?
For a long time, folks used a bar of soap in the shower. However, times have changed, and many people now use products such as body wash and shower gel in place of soap. In general, shower gel would be considered better than soap for a variety of reasons.
For starters, even though shower gels don't usually contain a high concentration of emollients, they contain more than a bar of soap. Soap strips your body of all the oils and does nothing to replace them. While this is helpful to clean your body completely, it requires some sort of additional moisturizer to help your skin be healthy.
Shower gel is also more sanitary than a bar of soap, especially if you share shower space with someone else. A bar of soap is rubbed up against someone's body or washing tool of choice. The bacteria are then spread amongst everyone else who uses it. The soap is also stored in the open air, making it a breeding ground for germs.
In contrast, shower gel is poured out and doesn't come into contact with any skin or cloth. It also has a closable lid, keeping it safe from airborne bacteria. You can share it with anyone else who needs it!
Finally, many people find shower gel more logistically simple than a bar of soap. It lathers up easily since it's already in liquid form, and it's easier to use than trying to create a lather from a bar of soap. You don't have to lay a soapy bar down on a potentially dirty surface; instead, you close the cap and put it down.
What Is The Difference Between Body Wash And Shower Gel?
Body wash and shower gel are similar forms of soap: both come in a bottle, are liquid, and use the same cleansing process. However, body wash is usually creamy in texture, while shower gel is translucent and gel-like. Because of this, most people would consider shower gel to be more attractive.
But do you remember those emollients we talked about earlier? Body washes contain a higher concentration. Thus, they're more moisturizing than shower gel and will be healthier for your skin when used daily. These body washes would be a great product to use when you don't use your favorite shower gel.
Is It Better To Shower In The Morning Or At Night?
There's really no bad time to shower; it should be based on your routine and personal preferences. When do you work out? Does your daily work make you dirty? Or do you need help waking up in the morning? You should consider these things -- and more -- when making your decision.
Showering at night
Showering at night is a great option for those who sweat or get dirty at work. Mechanics, construction workers, or painters, for instance, would do well to wash off before bed. If you take public transportation or work in a germy environment (hospitals, schools, etc.), you should shower at night. This gets all the bacteria off before you sleep in it all night.
A warm shower can also help you relax and de-stress before bed. If you struggle with insomnia, try taking a hot shower for five to ten minutes before bed. Plus, this will keep your sheets cleaner in the long run!
Showering in the morning
Not a morning person? Wake up a little earlier and take a lukewarm shower before breakfast. This will lower your internal body temperature and give you a jolt before your coffee.
Humans naturally perspire during the night. Showering in the morning is a great way to clean that gunk off, giving you a great start for the day. It also eliminates bedhead and gives you a clean slate to apply hair products or makeup.
Shower gel doesn't contain as many moisturizers as your skin might need. Consider using it every other day, mixing in a moisturizing form of soap on the other days. Or, apply a moisturizing lotion after using the shower gel. Plus, there are moisturizing shower gels on the market that might be ideal for your skin type.
Good luck in your battle for the health of your skin!