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Brazilians Shower More Than You Do

As an adult, you probably rarely question whether you shower “enough” – you just naturally assume that you shower enough for <em>you</em>. But, how much is enough, anyway, and what does the rest of the world think?</br></br>A recent article in <em>The Atlantic</em> dives into the shower data with gusto, and reveals that <a title="The Atlantic" href="http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2015/02/how-often-people-in-various-countries-shower/385470/" target="_blank">Americans are pretty average in their shower habits</a>. (It also suggests that the country is in the midst of a “no-shampoo revolution,” but that may be a story for another day.)</br></br><strong>The Numbers</strong></br></br>Euromonitor International, a leading research and analysis firm, surveyed 16 regions across the globe to plot specific shower and shampoo habits (because a shower without shampooing is a different thing entirely) and found that U.S. bathers average nearly seven showers a week, with four of those including a shampoo.</br></br>This puts us on par with the likes of Spain, France and India with respect to shower frequency, although we shampoo almost twice as much as them, which is more in line with Turkey, Japan, Indonesia and the Middle East.</br></br>But, it’s the Mexicans and Brazilians who really take the soap cake. Mexicans shower nearly eight days a week and shampoo almost every time they get in the tub. And the Brazilians? They may not shampoo as much, but they’re in the shower nearly <em>twice a day</em>.</br></br>Hmm – maybe because it’s so humid down there.</br></br><strong>Men vs. Women</strong></br></br>We turned to YouGov for fresh data on the shower preferences of men and women in the U.S. and found that <a title="YouGov" href="https://today.yougov.com/news/2014/07/14/united-states-bad-hygiene/" target="_blank">men shower more than women</a> by a margin of 10% among those who shower once a day. Even so, it bears noting that only 58% of those surveyed claimed to shower once a day.</br></br>The rest of the population is apparently a bit more flexible which, as it turns out, isn't such a bad thing after all ...</br></br><strong>Shower History &amp; Slippery Snake Oil</strong></br></br>Historians like to point out that a) showering wasn’t always as easy as it is today and b) many of us aren’t exposed to the kinds of rigorous labor that would require a daily bath. So, how has it come to pass that a shower a day is the standard?</br></br>To put it simply, <a title="New York Times" href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/31/fashion/31Unwashed.html?pagewanted=all" target="_blank">cleanliness is big business</a> and has been for a long time – long enough to habituate an entire nation, as a matter of fact. Advertisers have been telling us for decades that we need to smell good and look good, and that we need their products to do it.</br></br>But, do we?</br></br><strong>Shower Science</strong></br></br>When you set aside marginal arguments about folks with skin conditions or those who work for long hours at dirty jobs, the general consensus among doctors and dermatologists is that<a title="How Stuff Works" href="http://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/daily/tips/daily-shower-skin1.htm" target="_blank"> showering once a day is way too much</a>.</br></br>As it happens, your skin is really good at taking care of itself, but doing so requires the natural oils it produces. Incidentally, these are the same oils we wash away when we bathe too often, which can dry it out and expose it to unnecessary irritation.</br></br>But, that doesn’t mean you should forgo bathing entirely! A <a title="Showers" href="http://www.atgstores.com/plumbing/showers/" target="_blank">nice shower</a> is still a great way to reduce stress and stay fresh – just remember to moisturize.
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