Showering is as much a part of everyone’s daily routine as sleeping. Whether you take them at night or in the morning, chances are it’s a thing you’re doing on the regular. If not then gross, right? Not so, according to hygiene experts. Apparently as long as you shower 1-2 times a week, you’re gucci.
Dr. Elaine Larson, an infectious disease expert at Columbia University School of Nursing, says, “I think showering is mostly for aesthetic reasons. People think they’re showering for hygiene or to be cleaner, but bacteriologically, that’s not the case.”
“Your body is naturally a well-oiled machine. A daily shower isn’t necessary,” adds Dr. C. Brandon Mitchell, assistant professor of dermatology at George Washington University. He argues that washing the skin too frequently strips it of essential oils.
On top of that, while we may think daily showers are protecting us from letting the world’s germs fester on us, it has the opposite effect. Showering can increase chances of contracting illness because it allows skin to dry up, making you more susceptible to cracked skin and bacteria making its way in your system. The experts say in terms of your health, washing your hands frequently should do the trick of protecting you from disease.
However, these explanations don’t take into account how you look or–more importantly–smell. So, if you’ve got a multiple-times-a-week, dripping sweat gym routine going on it’s safe to say you can (please) merrily continue your daily scrubbing.