Want healthier, cleaner skin? The answer could be to stop showering – Telegraph.co.uk

§ August 12th, 2020 § Filed under Nano Medicine Comments Off on Want healthier, cleaner skin? The answer could be to stop showering – Telegraph.co.uk

Since the 2016 experiment, hes begun showering again, though far less frequently than before and in a way that would likely seem unusual to the average Brit. I take short, quick showers that arent hot, he explains and uses nothing but water. It gives me a rinse, makes my hair lay down, and makes me feel like theres some divide between night and day in this pandemic time, especially. He also brushes his teeth I dont want them to rot, he points out and uses hand soap. I wash my hands because I dont want to have diseases, he says. Im deliberate about why Im doing what Im doing, and I cut out the things Ive just been doing unquestionably.

Things many of us have been doing unquestionably may mean a step away from teeth whitening kits. Teeth whitening is a great example, he says. Its very much social, and about beauty. But it doesnt actually have to do with hygiene, and it doesnt mean your teeth arent free of bacteria and you dont have an oral infection. But as with the rise and changing face of soap during the Industrial Revolution, so the rise of kits to bleach the stains from our teeth mimics the past, intertwining health and beauty together inexorably.

In the book, Hamblin explains how the use of soap was a social signifier. There was great social value in knowing you werent part of the people living next to the open sewage piles that were in London and elsewhere, he says. You were part of the washed class because you could afford soap and water. The product was expensive, and it demonstrated that you were a cut above the rest. But the Industrial Revolution changed that: now, soap could be made cheaply en masse, and was available to most people to use as a way of maintaining their hygiene and safety.

Soap manufacturers then pivoted. They needed a way to continue to sell that class of beauty, says Hamblin. They produced more expensive soaps, only for luxury purposes. Chemically it was almost an identical product, but with two different consumer entry points and supposed additional value. And so theyve continued today in the same vein: cheaper, bulk-buy soaps lack the colouring and scent that more expensive ones do. Were also bombarded with messages about added ingredients that transform the humble bar of soap into something luxe and with that comes added cost.

Showers for Hamblin have started to serve a different purpose to most people: rather than being to keep clean, they signify the start of his day. This is an odd time, and at times like this, it becomes important to do things that ground you, he explains. Whether its making your bed, eating at rigid meal times or dressing up for working from home, certain rituals are important in keeping us grounded. These markers are important to us to maintain the rhythms of how our minds and bodies are meant to function, he says.

Where he wont compromise on cleanliness is in hand washing. Hands, face, space may be the phrase of the moment, uttered by the prime minister every other breath, but the importance of soap and water isnt lost on the doctor. Its the one instance where he thinks the line between health and beauty is becoming more distinct and its thanks to the coronavirus.

The moment right now with the pandemic is very important, he says. Humans are starting to ask: What is the necessary, important hygienic practice to prevent the spread of disease and what are we doing for all the other reasons? Hamblin believes that the books release comes at a good time because the public are more receptive to rethinking their beliefs. Moments of crisis like this tend to have the effect of resetting peoples value systems, he says. Most people are probably insecure about their health, their financial status, their social systems. Its moments like this where people take stock of what really matters.

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Want healthier, cleaner skin? The answer could be to stop showering - Telegraph.co.uk

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