I was told a long time ago by my doctor, I was getting eczema on my hands, and he told me not to use soap and went further on to explain that soaps and washes strip the protective layer of oil off your body and actually increase the risk of skin problems and gives a foothold to the odour producing bacteria, not to mention drying your skin out.
I havent used soap or any kind of wash for 15 years unless i'm covered with say grease or dirt. Never had a problem with a smell. I even stopped using deodorant for while, which works as long as your diet is fairly healthy and doesnt vary too much.
I use moisturiser when required.
I read somewhere recently, I should track this down, that we generally shower too much and that also effects our skin negatively, I think it should be under 7 a week.
That said, I always shower after a workout, but always no soap.
The eczyma community is split on that issue.
Use a soap with moisteurizer, or a soap labeled for sensitive skin.
I shower twice a day in the summer and only have issues when I use a really aggressive soap.
Try tea tree oil soap. It kills staph (and your tinea versicolor).
You only need to use a few drops to create enough lather to cover yourself, so it works out to be cheaper than using selenium shampoo as body wash. It also smells good without being perfumey at all (it smells like pine wood).
I'm actually pleasantly surprised by the caliber of this particular thread. I was tempted at first to move it to Boff Topic, but this is the PT, Diet and health forum so I let it stay. Turns out the discussion has been reasonably intelligent and informative.
I suspect there is going to be a lot of individual difference in this arena. The amount of sweat and oil that people produce varies dramatically.
Originally Posted by aus81
There is definitely some scientific validity to allowing your body's natural oils and the like to remain. But on the other side of the coin, if you look at the progress of human civilization, improvements in sanitation and personal hygiene have always been followed by a reduction in infectious disease and an increase in life expectancy.
I suppose the right thing is probably to find a proper balance in there somewhere.
You are asking for trouble not showering with soap, at least after grappling or really any training particularly in public areas. I have very dry skin but have not had issues with tea tree oil soap. If you don't like tea tree oil get a soap with as few chemicals (natural) as possible, always go fragrence free.
Most people taking two showers a day is too much unless you workout or live in a legitimately hot climate.
In regards to my body type, I am sweater. Like a madman, I actually feel a bit awkward when people have to grapple with me, but thats why I am always careful about not stinking and being clean, but seriously never had an issue with not using soap.
As Taebo said, it probably depends on the individual but I have never had any issues with not using soap regarding my skin, and I would need a bit more information to go against the advice of my doctor and my own empirical evidence. If I am handling food, or have been in a hospital etc, I will use ant-bacterial washes on my hands but thats about as far as I will go.
I remember hearing a few years ago that Tea-tree oil in low doses, as found in soaps and washes, actually contributes to MRSA.
I did a quick search and found these links:
Without empirical evidence, I cannot directly support nor deny this statement. However, I immediately question the mechanism by which this could possibly be true. MRSA is an infection typically acquired externally. So I'm left to wonder how would not cleansing yourself at all put you at lower risk than washing yourself with... well... just about anything?
Originally Posted by aus81
Thats why I published the link to the study.
Apparently in low doses your contributing to the overall resistance of the bacteria in the general population. I read somewhere in one of the MRSA threads that staph (MRSA is the type that is resistant and its only a problem if it gets into your system) is always on your skin and it didnt use to be much of a problem.
I am assuming it similar to not finishing your schedule of antibiotics, the bacteria are getting just enough of a dose to kill off the weak but not enough to wipe them out completely.
I could see how the process would work.
Sorry Taebo, I didn't read your response carefully.
A lot of the responses to my original comments were that I should wash using tea tree oil, I was pointing out how that might not be a good alternative.
But its not true that I dont cleanse myself at all, I am actually very particular about being clean, I just dont use soap, or washes. Based on my Doctors advice, and my own personal experience this has never been a problem, and I haven't read anything so far that would contradict this, though I am open if anyone has any material.
This does not include washing hands, but even then I was told that drying your hands is the real critical part. In Public toilets, I go out of my way to try and open doors at the top of the frame or with my clothing.
All this time and no one has quoted it? Armpits, asshole, crotch and teeth.