There’s An Argument That You Shouldn’t Be Washing Your Face in the Shower
Do you wash your face in the shower? There are two distinct camps when it comes to face washing — those who do it in the shower and those who cleanse outside of the shower. Those who wash their face over the bathroom sink say that the shower can be too harsh for face washing.
As Healthline points out, those on this side of the fence argue that cleansing in the shower exposes your skin to hotter water temperatures for a prolonged period of time and can be particularly irritating for sensitive skin. Others say that there are bacteria in the shower that you could be exposing your skin to via cleansing in there.
While the tempeature of the water could be a factor in drying out those with skin on the sensitive side, experts aren’t convinced about the bacteria factor leading to skin conditions like acne. In fact, there isn’t any current research that supports this argument.
“The alleged risk is that hot water dehydrates the skin, the heat from hot water and steam may dilate and burst sensitive blood vessels in the skin, and that the bacteria in the bathroom can increase the risk of infection. But there’s no scientific evidence to support any of these claims,” Ivy Lee, a board-certified dermatologist from California, told Healthline.
While there aren’t any studies that have shown that washing your face in the shower can cause acne, according to Lee, it could trigger rosacea in some people.
“There is no evidence that washing your face in the shower exacerbates acne, but there is a possibility that the shower may exacerbate rosacea if you spend a prolonged time in there,” she said. “The heat and humidity can dilate cutaneous blood vessels.”
In fact, according to another expert, London-based facialist Abigail James, washing your face in the shower can actually do positive things for your complexion.
“The steam from showers might actually aid in the facial cleansing process. Many facials around the world use steam during the cleansing part of a facial, as it softens the content of pores. This means a cleanse can be more effective,” James told Healthline.
For James, it’s more about personal preference — as long as you’re washing your face and taking care of your skin, it doesn’t matter where you’re doing this. So, it’s up to you! Prefer cleansing in the shower? That’s great, do that. Like to wash your face over the sink? You do you.