Is Hot Or Cold Water Better For Your Skin?

Is Hot Or Cold Water Better For Your Skin?

If you’re like most people, you prefer taking a hot bath or shower over a cold one. This makes a lot of sense as hot water can feel more relaxing. However when it comes to temperature, is hot or cold water better for your skin?

Hot Or Cold?

According to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), hot baths and showers have a habit of drying out your skin [1]. The UPMC also notes that exposure to hot water can inflame the skin, potentially leading to itching and peeling, as well as the disruption of the skin’s natural moisture balance. Therefore the UPMC advise taking baths in cooler water or for a shorter space of time, in order to keep your skin in peak condition.

How Does Hot Water Dry The Skin?

According to the American Skin Association, hot water has a tendency to remove the natural oils present in your skin, which leads to dryness [2]. By using lukewarm or cool water instead, you will help to keep your skin hydrated and also protect your skin’s natural oils.

Does This Mean I Should Avoid Hot Water?

A lot of people may find the prospect of having a cold shower or bath daunting, but fear not, you don’t have to go from one extreme to the other. Instead try swapping your long hot baths for shorter warm showers. If your skin happens to turn red during the shower, this is an indicator that the shower was too hot and you should adjust the temperature accordingly for next time. If you absolutely can’t make the change to colder baths and showers, then be sure to use a good moisturizer afterward to keep your skin hydrated.

Are There Any Benefits Of Using Hot Water?

Hot water may not be best for you in terms of keeping your skin well moisturized, however there are some benefits to taking hot showers or baths. They can help you to relax, relieve stress after a long day at work, warm you up when you feel cold, clear nasal congestion and help you to drift off to sleep, according to the UPMC.
The takeaway message here is that lukewarm or cool water is a lot more skin friendly, however if you do choose to take hot showers or baths, make sure you use a good moisturizer on your skin.

References

[1] https://share.upmc.com/2015/01/hot-shower-bad-skin/

[2] http://www.americanskin.org/resource/dryskin.php