Let’s walk you through a scenario: it’s been a day. Like, one of those long days when you were running late so you couldn’t stop to get your caffeine fix, your boss yells at you, you run into your arch-nemesis in the grocery store where you’re of course looking your absolute worst, and they’re out of your favorite brand of tomato basil soup. The worst of the worst days, the kind you really just need to wash off.
At the end of a long, stressful day, the only thing on a lot of our minds is a nice, luxurious, hot shower. Or when you wake up, if you’re a morning shower kind of person, you want something that helps you wake up and prepare for the (also possibly long) day. Whenever it is that you choose to suds up, a shower is a safe place for a lot of us to clear our mind, sing our favorite song, even have a good cry. A central part of our shower experience (no matter what that entails) is a good body wash.
The Star of the Show(er)
Though shampoos and face wash are vital to the shower experience, you’re going to use body wash on more of your body than anything else. That’s why it’s so important to pick a body wash that’s going to work hard for you. Your body wash needs to leave you feeling squeaky clean, feel good on your skin, and of course smell fantastic. You definitely don’t want something that’s going to leave your skin feeling tight or dried out or irritated from artificial scents, but you also want to actually feel clean after you wash, not greasy or oily (and DEFINITELY not smelly). Ideally, your body wash will leave your skin better than you started. Though that may seem like quite a checklist at first glance, it still is possible to get everything you want (and then some) from the most important step in your shower routine.
So now that you know what you want out of a body wash, you just have to figure out which one is going to get you there. There may be more options out there than you might think. Let’s break them down and see which one could be best for you.
First, there is the classic bar soap. There’s a lot to be said for bar soap; it takes up fairly minimal space in the scheme of things, it’s relatively inexpensive, and your parents probably use it. It’s been around for quite a while. A con of it is the ingredients can be questionable, and due to that, it is more likely to cause skin tightness and irritation. Not to mention, it can be difficult to handle in the water, constantly slipping out of your hands and occasionally dropping right on your toe (ouchie).
Next, we have another staple on the scene: the liquid body wash. It comes in a variety of scents, easily lathers on your loofah, and definitely leaves you feeling incredibly clean. But if you read the ingredients label, you’ll notice something: the first ingredient in many of these body washes is… water. Yep, 70%-90% water. This means that you’re paying for, and wasting plastic on, a fairly accessible ingredient. Which brings us to a new option you may or may not have heard of: powder.
Powder body wash is a fairly new option when it comes to soaps. It’s unique, often containing more natural and body-safe ingredients. Because there’s no water taking up extra space and plastic, it’s way better for the environment, too, reducing plastic waste significantly. Here’s how it works: you just sprinkle some powder into your hands, add a little water to activate, and work it into a lather. Then use it just as you would any other body wash.
The next time you head for your shower, whether it be after a long day or the beginning of a brand new one, think about what would be healthiest for your body and for your planet.