So you find out that your “friend” doesn’t use a washcloth when he/she takes a shower. We use “friend” loosely because there are some strong opinions when comes to using a washcloth or not using one.
Some believe that you have to use one religiously no matter if you’re washing your face or your body. Others believe you have to have multiple washcloths every time you take a shower. Even others use the argument that “doctors don’t use one when they go into surgery, so why should I have to use one?” And even still, others think that you should use them every now and then. Which group do you fall into?
Before you make your decision, some in the medical community have weighed in on this as well.
How NOT To Use A Washcloth
Board-certified Dr. N. Williams of an Indiana medical system says, “You should never scrub too vigorously with a washcloth. Removing dead skin cells is a good thing, but if you scrub too hard, your skin may appear red and irritated afterward. A gentle scrubbing is all you need to get rid of dead skin. If dry skin is a persistent problem, avoid using products that contain alcohol — alcohol will cause your skin to become tight and dry. Apply a moisturizer immediately after washing your face while your skin is still damp.”
Always use a clean washcloth every time you wash your face. Hanging a used washcloth in a moist shower for later use is a bad idea. Bacteria thrive in moist environments such as a wet washcloth. Washing your face with a washcloth that hasn’t been cleaned could spread the bacteria on your skin, potentially leading to an illness or infection.
Because of the damp, hot environment, they live in, washcloths are prime breeding grounds for bacteria and mold. When used, germs [on a dirty washcloth] are then spread or reintroduced to the skin, which can cause irritation and even infection. To minimize the growth of bacteria and mold, hang the washcloth so that air circulates around it, drying it faster. Sonic brushes are not immune to bacteria and mold either, but they typically dry faster and are less porous, so it’s less of a problem. Yet, sometimes less porous materials can be more rough or harsh on your skin, stripping too much of the natural oils that help regulate skin hydration.
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