3 Things Healthy Women Do Before Stepping in the Shower
We know that hot water and old razors can damage skin, but what about these tips?
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They Take Out Their Contacts
Water and contact lenses should never mix, and that includes your tap water. Because soft contact lenses are permeable, contaminants found in water can latch onto the lens and cause serious eye infections. For instance, Acanthamoeba is an amoeba commonly found in city water, and it can sometimes cause a sight-threatening infection. With 85 percent of all nationally reported cases occurring in contact lens wearers, ophthalmologist and executive director of the educational organization the Gas Permeable Lens Institute, Edward Bennett, OD, encourages patients to always remove lenses before swimming or bathing. "While rare, the infection does progress quickly and, in serious cases, can require corneal transplants. Most important is to never actually rinse your lenses with water." Bottom line: Try not to wear your lenses in the shower, and always clean them using contact solution.
They Leave Their Problems at the Door
If you've ever had a moment of clarity while in the shower, you're not alone. In a 2012 study conducted at the University of California, Santa Barbara, participants who performed undemanding activities that allowed their mind to wander experienced a significant increase in creative problem-solving abilities. The relaxing environment and familiar routine of a shower is a great opportunity to let your mind work on autopilot. Demanding activities, like solving a word or math problem, didn't have the same effect, so put aside thoughts of specific worries, problems or annoyances as you're getting ready to hop in the shower.
They Brush Their Hair
You probably know you shouldn't brush wet hair, but here's something you might not have realized: Not only is hair weaker and more prone to damage when wet, but we actually tend to be rougher on it. "Water gives hair the ability to stretch more, so you don't notice the tension," Bill Schrlau, a stylist at Adam Broderick Salon & Spa in Connecticut and the former national hair educator for Wella, explains. Tangles in dry hair, on the other hand, can be eye-wateringly painful, which causes most of us to be gentler. If you're prone to relentless snarls that can only be battled with a lot of conditioner, Schrlau says your best option is "brush from the bottom up to catch tangles at their source, and use a very wide-tooth comb."