“Non-bathing”: With this trend you can effectively save energy

Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / PublicDomainPictures

Non-bathing refers to the practice of showering and bathing as little as possible – for the sake of health and to save energy and water. Here you can find out everything you need to know about non-bathing.

Many people take it for granted that they bathe or shower every day. Non-bathing calls this implicitness into question: Those who do the practice wash less frequently, for example only once or three times a week.

Some see non-bathing as a new trend; others point out that showering and bathing less often is normal in cultures with limited water access. In any case, in Europe and North America, showering not every day seems to be making a comeback – for health reasons and also for the sake of the environment.

The reasons for non-bathing are not only the desire, energy and to save water, but also the fact that too much hygiene, according to dermatologists, can damage the skin. Washing your whole body less often is said to be healthier for your skin than showering every day. Is that actually true?

Non-bathing: save energy

Those who shower less or hardly at all save energy and water. That is understandable. However, a sample calculation using the shower calculator from the NRW consumer advice center makes it clear what influence our showering behavior can have on our energy consumption:

  • Shower time: 10 minutes
  • Water temperature: 38 degrees Celsius
  • Flow through the shower head per minute: 10 liters

A shower consumes almost four kWh of energy. For comparison (Polarstern): With just one kWh you can wash a load of laundry or make 70 cups of coffee. Non-bathing would therefore have a major impact on your energy consumption.

Non-bathing: Is showering less often better for your skin?

Non-bathing: Daily showers do not necessarily make sense.
Non-bathing: Daily showers do not necessarily make sense.
(Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / wilkernet)

Nowadays, it is considered normal for many to shower at least once a day. It is part of the daily hygiene routine. It also includes the implicit assumption that showering is good for the body. However, there are always doubts about this.

According to scientific studies, excessive showering can be yours skin microbiome to bring out of balance. The microbiome refers to all of the different bacteria that colonize your skin. The microbiome isn’t a bad thing, it’s actually necessary: ​​the good bacteria keep potentially harmful bacteria at bay, for example preventing them from entering your skin and causing an infection. Washing too often can create an imbalance in bacteria and compromise this protective skin barrier.

Furthermore, when you shower and bathe, you not only wash away dirt and sweat, but also the body’s own oils from your skin. These ensure that the skin does not become too dry. Dry skin can’t just be uncomfortable itching and feeling of tension, but also make you more susceptible to infections.

The skin is also able to clean itself to a certain extent. Daily washing of all parts of the skin is not absolutely necessary for health for this reason.

How many showers is enough?

Non-bathing: Water is often sufficient for washing, soap is not absolutely necessary.
Non-bathing: Water is often sufficient for washing, soap is not absolutely necessary.
(Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / jackmac34)

Does that mean you should wash as little as possible from now on?

Not necessarily. Not showering at all can be just as bad for your skin as excessive hygiene. Physical dirt and dead skin cells should not build up but should be removed with regular washing.

How often you should shower depends on your skin condition and lifestyle. One to three showers per week, i.e. as with non-bathing, is usually completely sufficient for the following people:

  • infants
  • people with sensitive skin
  • people who too dry skin and prone to eczema
  • People who spend most of their time indoors and without much exercise

Washing more frequently makes sense for these people:

  • Toddlers from crawling age
  • People who, due to climatic conditions and/or physical activity sweat profusely
  • People whose work involves dirt (e.g. work on a construction site)

In our guide How often does it make sense to shower? Among other things, we will go into more detail that showering and washing are two different things: Most people should wipe or wash at least one wet washcloth every day for parts of the body that are more likely to smell, such as the armpits or the genital area. This still saves a lot of water and heating energy compared to a full-body shower.

Non-bathing: tips and hints

Non-bathing: After showering, you can support your skin with a moisturizing lotion.
Non-bathing: After showering, you can support your skin with a moisturizing lotion.
(Photo: CC0 / Pixabay / AdoreBeautyNZ)

If you want to try non-bathing, you can use the following tips as a guide:

  • The general rule: If you see dirt on your skin or if you’ve been sweating profusely, it’s a good idea to wash up. Otherwise, one to three showers a week is completely sufficient.
  • On days without a shower, you can still wash your face, armpits, and genital area, for example with your hands or with a washcloth. Attention: For reasons of hygiene, washcloths in the intimate area should only be used once and then washed hot to prevent bacteria and germs from causing infections.
  • Never shower with water that is too hot, as it has a particularly drying effect on the skin. Warm water is enough.
  • Shower as short as possible – no longer than five to ten minutes.
  • shower gel or soap can help clean the armpits and feet, but are not essential for the rest of the body.
  • If you want to use shower gel or soap, you should avoid irritating ingredients (e.g. perfume, sulfates, parabens, phthalates and formaldehyde). You can find good organic shower gel in this one, for example leaderboard.
  • If you shower more than once or three times a week, it may make sense to wash your body with a natural moisturizer to cream.

Read more on Techzle.com:

  • Intimate care: You should avoid these nonsensical products
  • Keratosis pilaris: How to treat rough skin on upper arms and legs
  • No Poo: Wash your hair without shampoo


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