Why Feeling Clean Puts You in a Good Mood
Having a not-so-great day? Your oasis is waiting for you in the bathroom. Find out why science says a good shower (or bath) can put you in a good mood.
Every woman has a specific shower routine for every occasion. There’s the quick-and-go scrub, the sob fest after , and let’s not forget the two-hour “everything shower” where you pamper every inch of your body. No matter which kind you’re having, it never fails to put you in a good mood –and that’s something scientists can confirm.
Research published in reveals that the simple act of cleansing your skin and hair can lower anxiety levels. So why not turn your bathroom into a spa-like oasis? Read on to learn more.
Good Shower, Good Mood
Remember how the internet went wild over celebs who admitted to skipping baths? Although controversial, it sparked a debate on how often one should wash their body. While experts believe showering three times a week is sufficient for most people, there’s still that life-changing magic of rinsing away the day’s stresses with sudsy water to consider.
Even when you don’t feel particularly grimy or sweaty, a quick shower can be like a reset button for your mood. Researchers say that the physical experience of cleansing residues from your body can trigger a psychological response, making your brain believe you’re also washing off mental burdens. Think of it as symbolically wiping the slate clean.
There are other reasons why showering is the ultimate self-care activity.
It increases your feel-good hormones.
There’s nothing more refreshing than feeling the stream of chilly water on your skin after a long day out in the sun. But, as it turns out, the benefit of cold showers extends beyond that. According to the North American Journal of Medical Sciences, exposing your body to cold water triggers a shock response, during which your brain releases a surge of dopamine. The sensation is akin to a runner’s high after an .
It helps you sleep better.
When you time your shower correctly, it can positively affect your circadian rhythm a.k.a body clock. A reports taking a 10-minute warm shower or bath two hours before hitting the sheets can help you doze off faster and stay asleep longer. This pre-snooze routine lowers your core temperature, which activates the nocturnal sleep phase.
Another piece of wonderful news for night owls who are never in a good mood when the sun rises: a can make you feel more energized. The trick is to stand under the cold water for 30 seconds. The icy blast not only banishes grogginess but also jumpstarts your metabolism and increases your body’s circulation.
It gives your muscles some much-needed relief.
There’s a reason the always ends with a nice, relaxing bath. The heat from the water helps increase blood flow to your muscles, promoting healthy circulation and reducing stiffness. The Arthritis Foundation also notes that a regular 20-minute warm soak can reduce joint inflammation and pain. And if you’re using a shower, the water pressure mimics the effects of a gentle massage. Simply put, you can cleanse your body and release any build-up tension by hopping into the bathroom.
It makes you smell (and feel) nice.
There’s something undeniably satisfying about trying out a new body wash or bath bomb. Want to know why you can’t help but keep sniffing its lingering aroma on your skin? That the after-shower scent is the main reason why feeling clean gets you in a good mood.
The Scientia Pharmaceutica journal states fragrance can improve “physical and psychological well-being.” When your nose catches a pleasant smell, it influences your brain to think happy thoughts and fond memories. On the other hand, another suggests that scents can stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system, producing a calm and relaxed feeling throughout your body.
How to Properly Wash Your Body
When it comes to cold vs. , both have their own merits. However, alternating between the two is the best option for your skin, especially if yours tend to be drier. For example, you can use (not scalding hot!) for the first five minutes and gradually turn the nozzle to the right.
What about your choice of body wash products? Choose gentle cleansers like Dove Go Fresh Cucumber & Green Tea Body Wash and Dove Go Fresh Sakura Blossom Body Wash. The former contains cucumber to help hydrate and protect the skin. The latter has sakura and Himalayan sea salt extracts to help smoothen, soothe, and clarify the skin. What makes them special is their non-sticky Microbiome Gentle Skin Prebiotics formula that strengthens the skin’s barrier and keeps it moisturized for up to 24 hours. Your skin will feel fresh and soft all day, even when the weather sucks!
As for your weekly exfoliation, skip the loofah as it’s too abrasive for the epidermis. You can switch to a clean towelette or sponge, which you must wash and dry after every use.
Taking a shower or bathing is more than just a routine task. It’s a powerful act of self-care that can turn your blues into a good mood. So, the next time you step into your bathroom, take an extra few minutes as a reward. You deserve it!