Hopefully, you’ve been showering for almost your entire life—so there’s a good chance that you don’t put much thought into the activity. After all, what’s there to really think about? Just hop in, turn the dial, and lather up, right? Wrong! Though it may seem like second nature, the way you shower can affect your skin and hair. Believe it or not, we’ve come up with a list of shower faux pas you could be making that could be not-so-great for your complexion or your strands. So, before approaching your shower on autopilot, take a peek at the top seven shower mistakes you might be making—and learn what to do instead.
1. You’re Turning the Water Temperature Up Too High
We totally get it. In the middle of winter, taking a steamy shower sure does feel amazing. But here’s the thing: When you turn up the heat too high, it can strip your skin and hair of essential oil and moisture. That doesn’t mean you have to take a freezing cold shower. Just opt for lukewarm water instead.
2. You’re Using Products That Are Harsh for Your Skin
If you use products that are harsh, they can potentially strip your skin of natural oils and essential moisture. Couple that with too-hot water, and your skin may end up feeling pretty dry post-shower. When it comes to lathering up, reach for products with hydrating formulas to help keep your skin healthy-looking and happy.
3. You Don’t Clean Your Loofah
Pop quiz: What does your shower look like when you’re not in it? Most likely, it’s dark and damp—and that means that it can be a breeding ground for germs and bacteria to grow. So, if you store your loofah or sponge in the shower, make sure to give it a good rinse off with hot water before you use it on your skin. You should also consider storing your loofah in a well-ventilated area and replacing it every so often to help avoid this in the first place.
4. You’re Showering for Too Long
There’s no denying it: Showers feel oh-so-relaxing and therapeutic. But as de-stressing as they may feel, it could be time to curb the amount of time you spend taking them. Like we said, showering in very hot water can strip your skin of natural oils and moisture—so if you can’t bear to turn down the temps, keep your shower short and sweet.
5. You’re Being Too Aggressive
If you use a loofah or washcloth, it’s best to avoid aggressive scrubbing or rubbing, which can be irritating. Instead, gently glide product over your skin using your hands or a soft washcloth instead—this is much more delicate. Your skin will thank you!
6. You’re Not Moisturizing Immediately Afterwards
If you’re hopping out of the shower without moisturizing ASAP, it’s time to switch up your routine. The ideal time to moisturize your skin is when it’s still damp to help lock in hydration. Try a water-based moisturizer, like the L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal to Oily Skin, L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Normal to Dry Skin, or L’Oréal Paris Hydra Genius Daily Liquid Care for Extra Dry Skin, which are formulated with aloe water and hyaluronic acid to provide long-lasting hydration.
7. You’re Not Paying Enough Attention to Your Scalp
Are you a shampoo, condition, and go kind of girl? If you’re neglecting your scalp, your hair may not look the best that it possibly can. If you have oily roots, try the L’Oréal Paris Hair Expert Extraordinary Clay Pre-Shampoo Mask before you shower. On dry hair before shampooing, apply the mask to your roots section by section, making sure to fully cover your entire head. Leave the mask on for five minutes, then rinse while gently massage your scalp. Follow up with the L’Oréal Paris Hair Expert Extraordinary Clay Shampoo and L’Oréal Paris Hair Expert Extraordinary Clay Conditioner.