Hot vs. cold showers: What temps mean for your skin

Hot vs. cold showers: What temps mean for your skin

Did you know that your water temperature plays a big part in how your skin behaves?

It may seem like a preference-based luxury, but how hot or cold you set the water affects your skin even after you're done bathing. Here's why:

Hot shower benefits

Many of us love a hot shower. It relaxes the muscles, helps us to fall asleep faster, and generally makes us feel better prepared to tackle the day. As far as skincare goes, hot water opens the pores. When the pores are open, it's easier to remove blemish-causing dirt and oil buried deep within. It's also easier to remove hair when the pores are open.

Leaving the pores open too long can be problematic. When your pores are open too long--say, for a scalding hot, 20-minute shower, you are more prone to ingrown hairs, dry skin, and more dirt and oil clogging your pores once you're out of the shower. Ever notice how long it takes to stop sweating after a hot shower? That means your pores are still open. And why your skin appears dry and ashy when you don't moisturize immediately after your shower.

Cold shower benefits

Coldwater tightens the pores, which restricts dirt, oil, and hair from entering. Tightened pores also lock in moisture which gives the skin shine when you leave the shower. Also, cold water reduces inflammation of the muscles and the skin, like rashes and cuts. 

Of course, there's a flip side. Taking a cold or colder shower isn't as effective for deep cleaning the skin. And it's pretty hard to withstand for more than a few minutes.

Hot vs. cold showers

As you can see, there are benefits and considerations for both. It's okay to enjoy a hot shower every now and then, but try to end your showers and baths with a few minutes of cool water to close the pores before you're done. This way you get the best of both worlds every time you shower. Don't forget to moisturize with a body butter afterward!