Say What Now? Daily Showers Are Purely ‘Performative’ and Have No Real Health Benefit, Experts Insist |

Say What Now? Daily Showers Are Purely ‘Performative’ and Have No Real Health Benefit, Experts Insist

Well, this is definitely an interesting perspective.

Call it perfume-ative hygiene.

Experts say the daily shower has no proven health benefit, dismissing the dousing as a socially-accepted practice geared toward staving off accusations of funkiness — as A-listers like Jake Gyllenhaal to Mila Kunis admit they’ve been saying no to the nozzle.

“Why are we washing? Mostly because we’re afraid somebody else will tell us that we’re smelling,” environmentalist Donnachadh McCarthy told the BBC.

The “Prostitute State” author only hoses off once per month to help the environment — a lifestyle choice inspired by spending two weeks in the Amazon with the indigenous Yanomami people, he said.

Every other morning, McCarthy told a reporter, he opts instead for a wash at the sink, using a cloth to give his body a good scrub.

And while abstaining from daily showers might seem like antisocial behavior, medical experts are inclined to lean toward agreeing with earthy types like McCarthy, saying that the modern obsession with cleanliness can actually be hazardous to one’s health.

Manhattan dermatologist Dr. Julie Russak previously told The Post that prolonged and daily showers could strip away the “skin’s microbiome,” which plays a role in protecting the skin and is “also extremely important in overall health of the body.”

Chemist David Whitlock was so adamant about preserving this dermal barrier that the bathing abstainer didn’t shower for 12 years, instead opting to spray himself with good bacteria.

When asked about addressing critics, he told Vice: “Tell anyone who mocks you that they are betraying profound ignorance of the skin microbiome, and then walk away.”

The anti-splash backlash comes as people are actually showering more than ever before.

In 2021, researchers at Harvard Health found that 66% of Americans shower every day, while a 2005 report claims that it is common for Brits to shower once or twice per day.

“We wash our bodies so much more than we did in the past,” Dale Southerton, Professor of Sociology of Consumption at the University of Bristol, who co-authored the report, told the Beeb.

“The change has mostly come about over the past 100 years, and it was not planned. In fact, it seems to have happened almost by accident.”

Experts have chalked up this phenomenon to the increasing prevalence of showers, which became common in US homes circa the 1920s — and in their across the pond counterparts in the 1950s.

“If you go 100 years back, we didn’t shower every day, because the shower was not a normal thing to have,” Professor Kristen Gram-Hanssen from the Department of the Build Environment of Aalborg University in Denmark declared.

“We don’t shower because of health. We shower because it’s a normal thing to do.”

Throw in the societal stigma of not showering, and it’s no secret people are irrigating their epidermises on the reg.

Sally Bloomfield, honorary professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine claimed that people shower every day because it’s “socially acceptable.”

So how much should you really shower? That depends.

“There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to washing skin and hair,” Seattle dermatologist Joyce Park told The New York Times in a 2023 report.

“The ideal frequency depends on your skin and hair type, how much you sweat and how dirty you get.”

Experts advise people who have drier skin — or suffer from conditions such as eczema — to take shorter, less frequent showers, as this can damage their aforementioned skin microbiome.

If one does feel the need to shower daily — after work or a workout — they should focus “only in the areas that have higher concentrations of sweat accumulation,” Dr. Russak explained.

via: The Post

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