The Unknown Science of Showering

Diving into the shower after a long day at work or as a way to wake up in the morning is an essential ritual for many of us. It’s a time to recharge, relax and reflect, pampered by your favourite products.

But there’s a lot of conflicting advice around showering: from how often you should do it to how hot the water should be.

We’ve explored the latest scientific research around how to shower.

How often should I shower?

There is happy news for the shower-skivers! Scientists have suggested that showering too much is a possibility which can actually damage our skin. Showering too often can irritate and dry out your skin. Over showering washes away your skin’s natural protective bacteria (skin flora), dries out your hair and dulls its colour.

In fact, scientists have suggested that unless you have an active job, live in a hot humid climate or exercise, then you don’t need to shower on a daily basis. While this may not appeal to some, reducing the amount you shower could help your skin stay hydrated.

How long I shower for?

If you’re not willing to give up your daily shower, why not reduce the length of each shower? Although it may be tempting, especially in winter, to remain in a hot shower until your skin becomes puckered this can dehydrate your skin, hair and nails.

Limiting your shower time to under 5 minutes is a good way to start. If your skin is prone to dryness apply a rich moisturiser straight after a shower. This is when it’s most effective. Also, feel free to reapply moisturiser if the skin is dry again soon after showering.

You'll also enjoy this!

sodium hyaluronate

How hot should my shower be?

Try to have warm (not hot) showers. Hot water can quickly strip skin of its essential oils. This means those with sensitive or dry skin, or conditions like eczema, should avoid very hot showers.

For the brave among us, showering in cold water has many benefits, as it can reduce inflammation and soothe muscles after a workout. It increases alertness, improves immunity and circulation and, unlike hot water, is great for your hair and skin!


It’s no coincidence we have our best ideas in the shower! Our brains are stimulated by dopamine, the reward drug released into our brain when we sense warm water.

Our minds also tend to be more relaxed and distracted when taking a shower, both of which are essential for creativity. No wonder Archimedes shouted eureka in the bath!