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Don't get in a lather over your wash-time rituals. Take our squeaky clean quiz to scrub up on what's working well and what isn't…
There’s nothing quite like lathering up fully and coming out of the shower squeaky clean. But using too much product isn’t very good for your skin. ‘An average adult doesn’t need more than a 50p piece-sized blob of shower gel to clean their whole body,’ says Dr Sweta Rai from the British Association of Dermatologists. ‘If you suffer from dry skin, choose shower creams over foams or soaps, as they tend to be more hydrating,’ she adds. We love Soap & Glory Call Of Fruity Bubble In Paradise Body Wash, £6.50/650 points (500ml), with its moisturising cream formula.
‘You have sweat glands all over your body, which means you have to wash your whole body, including your feet,’ says Dr Rai. ‘For most of the day, they’re enclosed in shoes, which can often harbour fungal spores and bacteria, so you need to spend time washing this off.’ Once you’re out of the shower, it’s important to dry your feet properly, too. ‘Towel in between the toes to avoid conditions such as athlete’s foot,’ she explains.
While using a blunt blade can cause shaving rashes, ingrown hairs and even infections from micro cuts, you don’t have to change it after every use. ‘Swapping your blades every 5-10 uses is enough,’ says Dr Anita Sturnham, GP and skin specialist. But note: ‘Pubic hair has a thicker texture than leg hair, so it’s likely to blunt your razor quicker,’ she adds. So why not invest in a bikini styler, such as the new Venus Bikini Precision Trimmer, £22.49/2,249 points. Or de-fuzz with longer results, with Veet EasyGrip Ready-To-Use Wax Strips, £6.60/660 points (20-pack), for up to four weeks of smooth skin. As for the perfect razor for your legs? We like Gillette Venus Swirl Flexi Ball Women’s Razor, £5.99/599 points, which glides across your contours with ease.
Not only is it important to moisture every time you have a shower, but you should do so immediately afterwards. ‘When your skin comes into contact with water, it loses moisture, so it’s essential to replenish the lost lipids and oils to help prevent cracking,’ says Dr Rai. Dr Paul Evans, technology and innovation director at Sanctuary Spa, adds: ‘For maximum hydration, smooth on your moisturiser straight out of the shower, when skin’s still damp.’ We love Neutrogena Hydro Boost Body Gel Cream, £4.99/499 points (250ml). Packed with hyaluronic acid and glycerine, the silky gel formula helps skin stay hydrated for up to 24 hours. Or try Sanctuary Spa Wet Skin Moisture Miracle in Green Lemon and Orange Blossom, £8/800 points (200ml), which is formulated to be smoothed straight on to wet skin.
You use it every day, so it makes sense to keep your shower puff/loofah just hanging off the tap, right? Erm, so very wrong, say the experts. It turns out that the warm, humid conditions of our shower cubicles are the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Gross. ‘The humidity allows bacteria to multiply and grow at a rapid rate,’ says Dr Anton Alexandroff, consultant dermatologist & spokesperson for the British Skin Foundation. ‘Instead, rinse it thoroughly and leave it to dry, either outside or in a well-ventilated area.’
Style like a pro
Want to enjoy salon-standard hairstyling at home? The Dyson Supersonic Hairdyer, £299.99, uses pioneering technology to disperse air evenly, reducing frizz and allowing for faster, more precise drying – all without heat damage. Plus, the rotating magnetic attachments – a styling concentrator, smoothing nozzle and diffuser – allow you to create any finish you fancy. Click here for more next-gen haircare.