Beautifying Hydration Techniques Part 1
Self-care is the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health and beautifying hydration techniques are a great place to start.
Self-care is the name of the game; The better we take care of ourselves, the more resilient we are. And since your physical self is 99.9% water molecules, water has a huge role to play in our self-care practices. So today we’re going to explore the roles water plays in our beauty and hygiene, both internally and externally.
We’ll start with the foundation of your beauty routine-the water you shower and bathe in. You’ll see how hardness, softness and chemical additives affect your hair and skin, and we’ll share some effective solutions to make your shower and bath time extra nourishing and we will learn more about beautifying hydration techniques!
Bathing or Showering
If you’re looking to promote relaxation, ease fatigue or treat chronic pain, a bath might be the right choice for you. But if you’re more interested in efficient daily cleansing, a shower might be the better choice. Showers could also deliver an immune-system boost if you turn the water to the cold setting for the last several minutes of your routine.
Let’s start with our daily drench…Nothing is more relaxing and refreshing than a deliciously steamy bath or shower after a long day. But is your shower really cleansing the water you think it is?
Hard Water & Hair Manageability
If your hair has been looking dull or dry lately, the problem may not be with your stands themselves, but with the water you’re showering in. Though often overlooked, “hard water,” meaning water with a lot of dissolved minerals like calcium, magnesium, metallic ions, etc., can have a significant impact on the look and feel of your skin and hair, affecting everything from moisture content to overall manageability.
One study published in the International Journal of Trichology found that people who used hard water to wash their hair had decreased hair strength resulting in more breakage and frizzy flyaways. And another study from the International Journal of Dermatology found that hair treated in hard water had more mineral deposits and decreased thickness.
Hard Water & Skin Irritation
Not only is your hair affected by water hardness, but of course your skin is too.
A study published in the Journal of Investigated Dermatology fount that using hard water on the skin increased sulfate deposits, which can cause further irritation and dryness. It can also cause or exacerbate sensitive skin. You may find you need to use a lot more creams and oils just to keep your skin as silky as you like it. As dermatologist Dr. Sam Bunting described. “Minerals being left to dry on the skin may clog pores and cause dryness, triggering breakouts, flaking and itching.” Plus, “When water contains high amounts of calcium, it doesn’t properly dissolve soap, meaning that there can be some residue left on the skin. This can also attribute to sensitive, irritable and blemish prone skin. ” This all makes sense when you take into consideration that incidences of eczema and psoriasis are far more common in hard water areas.
Hard Water Solutions
Actually, the solution is really simple! The best way to soften hard water is to structure it. Although this doesn’t physically remove the minerals from the water, it changes their shape and renders them inert, creating a softer texture to your water. One of the most common things people notice after installing a shower unit or whole home unit, is softer, more supple skin and luxurious hair. Natural Action has actually just released a brand new upgraded shower unit that beautifully softens and enlivens the water you bathe in.
Let’s address tap water.
However well intentioned our self-care routine, if we’re pampering ourselves in poisonous water, then our self-care is toxic. After all, our skin is one of our largest organs and plays an integral role in keeping us healthy.
A study published in the American Journal of Public Health showed that the skin absorbs about 64% of total contaminants in tap water.
Other studies found that your face is several times more permeable than broader areas of your body. But get this… your underarms and genitals absorb 100% of contaminants in the water!
Clearly, what we bathe in ends up inside our bodies. Get this: In 1997, the EPA concluded that a person can absorb more contaminants from bathing and showering than from drinking polluted water. In one study, the highest levels of THMs were found in the blood samples of people who took 10 min showers, whereas the lowest levels were found in the blood samples from people who drank a liter of water in 10 min. Let that sink in.
Once again, studies indicate you may be absorbing MORE toxins by bathing than you would even by drinking them through the digestive tract. So if you’ve sorted your drinking water setup but have yet to address bathtime, it’s past time to uplevel your shower game.
While we all love a good long, hot steamy shower, or a luxurious soak in the tub, the reality of the situation is that we’re exposing ourselves to high levels of toxins from our tap water as we’re doing it, and the more time we leave the shower head running the more time these chemicals have to interact with each other, creating new toxico-dynamic reactions (many of which haven’t been studied). Because these chemicals aren’t just affecting us in isolation. When they swim around in the water together, they meet and mate and co-create new byproducts, called DBPs – disinfection byproducts and CBPs- Chlorination byproducts, basically the bastard offspring of the noxious chemical orgy happening in your tap.
Create Your Own Spa
Believe me, I know all this data can sound a little overwhelming and alarming but beautifying hydration techniques are so important. The old adage holds true: there’s something in the water! But I’m not telling you this to stress you out. Just the opposite! I want your bath and shower time to be the healing sanctuary that it should be. It should be a respite from all the concerns of the world, a place where you can come and receive a cleansing baptism from living structured water that resets and refreshes you, physically, mentally and emotionally. I want your self-care time to feel just like going to the spa! And, in fact, the word spa is an abbreviation for the latin, “salus per aqua” which means, “health through water.” Water is innately healing, when it is free of abominations… So let’s bring salus per aqua, health through water, back to your bath and shower.
Self-care goes beyond just a clay mask and a jade egg. It has to include the fundamental foundation of not accidentally poisoning ourselves. After all, true beauty can’t come from any 12 step skincare routine if it doesn’t first come primarily from inner radiant health, and our health is a direct measure of our hydration.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of Beautifying Hydration Techniques and Self-Care practices!