Most of us are not leaving our homes or seeing anyone other than the people self-isolating under the same roof. With nowhere to go and no one to impress, the internet is raising the question: How often do we really need to shower or wash our hair?
Dr. Robert H. Shmerling, senior faculty editor with Harvard Health Publishing, wrote that approximately two-thirds of Americans shower daily. In Australia that number is over 80%, but in China, about half of people report bathing only twice a week.
She suggests two to three showers a week for the average person.
Shmerling wrote that normal, healthy skin maintains a layer of oils and a balance of “good” bacteria and other microorganisms. He said washing and scrubbing removes them, especially if the water is hot.
Doing so every day, experts say, can strip your skin of those oils causing it to dry out and become irritated. But, they say, it depends on your daily habits and skin type.
The consensus seems to be that showering daily isn’t necessarily bad, but it isn’t necessarily necessary.
But what about washing your hair?
According to WebMD, experts say there’s no single answer to how often people should shampoo. But, they say, you may not need to do it as often as you think. It usually comes down to personal preference.
“I have always said, ‘It’s fine to go a few days without shampooing,’” Alli Webb, professional hair stylist and founder of Drybar, said in an article on WebMD. “For hair that’s normal in terms of oiliness and medium weight, I sometimes tell my clients to go as long as they can without shampooing.”