Straight Dope Message Board

Straight Dope Message Board (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/index.php)
-   In My Humble Opinion (IMHO) (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/forumdisplay.php?f=12)
-   -   How do hoomans use shower gel with no devices? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=878904)

Calavera 07-17-2019 04:50 AM

How do hoomans use shower gel with no devices?
 
A basic question I should know the answer to already no doubt. However I grew up either using bar soap or shower gel and a sponge. In my entire adult life I have either used bar soap or shower gel with sponge. I had to take a shower at some friends house, and they just had shower gel. I presume they're not the weird ones, but I had no idea how to get full body clean without using a huge amount of shower gel, any of which I put straight in my hand quickly disappears.

Nava 07-17-2019 05:27 AM

That thing at the end of your arm? You can use it to close the water while you soap up. Those things at the end of your legs? You can use them to step back from the jet.

don't ask 07-17-2019 05:37 AM

Make a kind of cup with the thing at the end of your arm.

Melbourne 07-17-2019 05:42 AM

Depending on the shower, you may be able to step out of the spray, or redirect the spray, rather than turning the water down. And somepeople only soap their smelly bits anyway, so they don't need much gell.

Colophon 07-17-2019 05:53 AM

I'm puzzled about why this is puzzling. You squirt a small amount of shower gel into your palm (the brand I buy comes in a bottle with a little folding hanger on the end so you can hang it from the shower). The you rub it over your wet skin/hair and lather it up - best to stand out of the heaviest spray so that it doesn't all wash off. I haven't used a flannel or sponge in the shower for years - they always just strike me as a big germ reservoir unless you used a brand new one each time.

Cugel 07-17-2019 06:49 AM

The nozzle in my shower is directly above me. I turn it to a 45 angle for 20 seconds whilst lathering up then turn it back downward.

elbows 07-17-2019 07:23 AM

Failing every other suggestion, one could seek out that new, high tech, latest invention, the face cloth and use it as a vessel to hold the gel whilst getting clean. Just sayin’ !

It’s not a sponge, of course, but still might prove 100% effective!

ftg 07-17-2019 08:00 AM

Another vote for perhaps they use a washcloth. Taken from the linen closet before the shower along with the towel. Thrown in the laundry pile/basket/whatever along with the towel after the shower.

Hence you don't see it.

KidCharlemagne 07-17-2019 08:04 AM

Just came in thread to make sure a dog wasn't asking the question.

jz78817 07-17-2019 09:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Calavera (Post 21754993)
A basic question I should know the answer to already no doubt. However I grew up either using bar soap or shower gel and a sponge. In my entire adult life I have either used bar soap or shower gel with sponge. I had to take a shower at some friends house, and they just had shower gel. I presume they're not the weird ones, but I had no idea how to get full body clean without using a huge amount of shower gel, any of which I put straight in my hand quickly disappears.

I've used just my hands in a pinch, but yeah, you end up using a lot more.

pulykamell 07-17-2019 12:11 PM

I've never used anything but my hands.

Thudlow Boink 07-17-2019 12:14 PM

For the record, I'm on the OP's side here. I've always used bar soap, and the concept of shower gel confuses me.

Annie-Xmas 07-17-2019 12:14 PM

You can even use the back of your hand. I cannot maneuver my left hand enough to put its palm up, so I just use the back of the hand. Works fine.

Colibri 07-17-2019 12:20 PM

Since the OP is looking for advice, let's move this to IMHO.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator

CarnalK 07-17-2019 12:33 PM

I guess I'm lucky and my hair and skin don't suffer because of what soap I use. So basically, my hair is a soap/shampoo reservoir during my shower. Put all you need on your head, lather it up and dispense where necessary.

Chingon 07-17-2019 12:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink (Post 21755570)
For the record, I'm on the OP's side here. I've always used bar soap, and the concept of shower gel confuses me.

Does all liquid soap confuse you?

SmellMyWort 07-17-2019 01:52 PM

My body is pretty much one big loofah, so no problems here.

Inigo Montoya 07-17-2019 03:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Annie-Xmas (Post 21755571)
I cannot maneuver my left hand enough to put its palm up, so I just use the back of the hand. Works fine.

Still trying to get used to that. Failing.

In other news: I will occasionally wash my face with body wash. Still have never been caught.

panache45 07-17-2019 04:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KidCharlemagne (Post 21755107)
Just came in thread to make sure a dog wasn't asking the question.

Well, we really don't know, do we?

EinsteinsHund 07-17-2019 04:05 PM

How do hoomans use shower gel with no devices?
 
The real question to ask though: How do aliens use a shower at all? Especially if they are the M. Night Shyamalan kind...

Hilarity N. Suze 07-17-2019 04:11 PM

I am assuming that when you use bar soap you rub it in your hands and then rub it on your body. To use shower gel, instead of rubbing it in your hands to get soap on them, you squirt the shower gel in your hands, then use it just like soap. Same principle as the hand soap that you see in public restrooms, squirt a little into your hand, wash hands, rinse, only apply it to whatever body parts you're washing.

krondys 07-17-2019 04:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CarnalK (Post 21755614)
I guess I'm lucky and my hair and skin don't suffer because of what soap I use. So basically, my hair is a soap/shampoo reservoir during my shower. Put all you need on your head, lather it up and dispense where necessary.

Basically this, but I use my chest hair.

What?

Thudlow Boink 07-17-2019 04:48 PM

Well, only since you asked...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Chingon (Post 21755645)
Does all liquid soap confuse you?

Um, sort of?

When I was a little kid, I thought liquid soap was pretty cool. Mostly, I think, because of the novelty: I only encountered it in public restrooms. But also because it was in some sort of dispenser, and you had to push a button or pull a lever to make it come out, and pushing buttons to make things happen was So. Cool. (This was back in the dark ages before things like home computers, when human beings were still so amazingly primitive that they still thought digital watches were a pretty neat idea, so there weren't as many opportunities to push buttons as there are today. And yes, it was also a thrill to push the button to call an elevator or get a WALK signal to cross the street.)

Nowadays, I find liquid hand soap slightly annoying, because about half the time, about half the soap bloorps through my fingers before I get a chance to rub it on my hands. And yes, the novelty has long since worn off.

Showering with it sounds even worse, because I not only have to hold it in my hand, I have to carry this slippery liquid to the other parts of my body and rub it onto them, preferably without spilling most of it.

Analogy time: Washing with bar soap is like writing with something solid, like a pencil or crayon. Showering with shower gel and a sponge is like writing with a quill pen or painting with a paint brush. And using shower gel with no "devices" is like writing using finger paints.

Inigo Montoya 07-17-2019 04:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by panache45 (Post 21756031)
Well, we really don't know, do we?

On the internet nobody knows whether you're a dog, but everyone knows whether you're a jackass.

bordelond 07-17-2019 05:08 PM

I would bet that what some people don't realize about showers is that not all people execute them the same way.

The assumed method is that a person turns the shower on and simply stands under it directly, with the water simply pouring all over and running down one's head, upper body, and the rest. And that at any one moment, a person's whole body is constantly under running shower water.

Not everyone does it that way. If you DO do it that way, and attempt to use shower gel casually as you would use bar soap ... yeah, the shower gel will be rinsed off your hands before you get much soaping done.

Now then. Another way some people shower is to position one's body, the shower head, or both so that only desired body parts are being wetted at any one time. This is even easier if one uses a removable shower head and a hose as opposed to a more fixed-position shower head.

I use shower gel frequently, and never use a sponge or loofah or cloth. Trick is, my hands are not in the running shower water as I soap up. I've stepped forward a bit and turned by back to the shower head. All the running water is hitting my upper back and running downwards while my hands are easily lathering up most of the rest of me. Shower gels do differ in viscosity, and runnier brands can require a little extra care to keep it from spilling out of your hands. Still, it's a snap to apply.

More on personal shower differences: I dislike water splashing on my face (no, I don't swim). But I've always loved a good shower. How to reconcile? I learned long ago how to shower my entire body -- including applying/rinsing shampoo in my hair -- without getting water on my face. It's really easy and familiar for me -- but I'm sure that for people who do it another way, my way seems really weird.

In recent years, I've learned to tolerate running water on my face for maybe a five-count because it's handy to wash my face in the shower. Still, I have to have a towel hanging in the shower (far from the running water, it stays dry) so that I can wipe the water off my face ASAP.

...

So anyway, that's one shower gel success story :D

Dahnlor 07-17-2019 05:16 PM

I wish to join in solidarity with OP and Thudlow, as I am also baffled by how someone could use shower gel without going through an entire bottle after every third or fourth shower.
Quote:

Originally Posted by Hilarity N. Suze (Post 21756051)
I am assuming that when you use bar soap you rub it in your hands and then rub it on your body. To use shower gel, instead of rubbing it in your hands to get soap on them, you squirt the shower gel in your hands, then use it just like soap. Same principle as the hand soap that you see in public restrooms, squirt a little into your hand, wash hands, rinse, only apply it to whatever body parts you're washing.

Nope. I turn the water off, rub the soap bar directly on my body and lather it up from there. Attempting the same thing with gel seems to use up nearly half the bottle for full-body coverage, and even then the resulting lather is unsatisfying compared to what I can get using a bar of soap that will last for weeks. I never use a wash rag or a sponge, those just seem awkward to me.

EinsteinsHund 07-17-2019 05:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756141)
I would bet that what some people don't realize about showers is that not all people execute them the same way.

The assumed method is that a person turns the shower on and simply stands under it directly, with the water simply pouring all over and running down one's head, upper body, and the rest. And that at any one moment, a person's whole body is constantly under running shower water.

Not everyone does it that way. If you DO do it that way, and attempt to use shower gel casually as you would use bar soap ... yeah, the shower gel will be rinsed off your hands before you get much soaping done.

Now then. Another way some people shower is to position one's body, the shower head, or both so that only desired body parts are being wetted at any one time. This is even easier if one uses a removable shower head and a hose as opposed to a more fixed-position shower head.

I use shower gel frequently, and never use a sponge or loofah or cloth. Trick is, my hands are not in the running shower water as I soap up. I've stepped forward a bit and turned by back to the shower head. All the running water is hitting my upper back and running downwards while my hands are easily lathering up most of the rest of me. Shower gels do differ in viscosity, and runnier brands can require a little extra care to keep it from spilling out of your hands. Still, it's a snap to apply.

More on personal shower differences: I dislike water splashing on my face (no, I don't swim). But I've always loved a good shower. How to reconcile? I learned long ago how to shower my entire body -- including applying/rinsing shampoo in my hair -- without getting water on my face. It's really easy and familiar for me -- but I'm sure that for people who do it another way, my way seems really weird.

In recent years, I've learned to tolerate running water on my face for maybe a five-count because it's handy to wash my face in the shower. Still, I have to have a towel hanging in the shower (far from the running water, it stays dry) so that I can wipe the water off my face ASAP.

...

So anyway, that's one shower gel success story :D

Tis is a total WTF thread for me :confused:. Why don't use the useful hint by Nava to turn off the shower when soaping your body? That's the natural way for me. So how I take a shower:

Turn on shower and make your body wet.

Turn off shower.

Apply shower gel out of the bottle to my dominant hand. Lather the body (with both hands). Rub diligently everywhere, especially the stinky parts (you know them all).

Turn on shower again. Rinse your body.

Step out of the shower and rub yourself dry with a towel. (I added that piece because obviously to some people taking a shower seems to be a mystery)

bordelond 07-17-2019 05:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21756197)
Tis is a total WTF thread for me :confused:. Why don't use the useful hint by Nava to turn off the shower when soaping your body?

Balancing the hot/cold taps and getting the water temperature just right in our shower is a bit of a pain. Plumbing differences may account for different showering strategies, it seems.

Also, I never actually thought of doing that. Taking a step away from the shower strikes me as far, far simpler and more natural. Others' mileage will vary, of course.

EinsteinsHund 07-17-2019 05:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756211)
Balancing the hot/cold taps and getting the water temperature just right in our shower is a bit of a pain. Plumbing differences may account for different showering strategies, it seems.

Also, I never actually thought of doing that. Taking a step away from the shower strikes me as far, far simpler and more natural. Others' mileage will vary, of course.

Maybe also the frugality and the more recent ecological concerns of German people are a factor: nobody in his right mind here would want to waste the water in the first place.

Broomstick 07-17-2019 05:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dahnlor (Post 21756154)
I wish to join in solidarity with OP and Thudlow, as I am also baffled by how someone could use shower gel without going through an entire bottle after every third or fourth shower.

From the standpoint of the manufacturer that's a feature and a not a bug.

bordelond 07-17-2019 05:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21756216)
Maybe also the frugality and the more recent ecological concerns of German people are a factor: nobody in his right mind here would want to waste the water in the first place.

Where I live (SE Louisiana, USA), water is virtually free and seemingly ever-replenishable. It's not treated as a limited resource locally. It's all I've ever known regarding home use of water.

Dewey Finn 07-17-2019 06:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756211)
Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21756197)
Tis is a total WTF thread for me :confused:. Why don't use the useful hint by Nava to turn off the shower when soaping your body?

Balancing the hot/cold taps and getting the water temperature just right in our shower is a bit of a pain. Plumbing differences may account for different showering strategies, it seems.

I used to have a showerhead with a valve built in, so you could shut off the water up there, without having to rebalance the temperature. But the handheld showerhead I now have doesn't have that feature.

EinsteinsHund 07-17-2019 06:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756226)
Where I live (SE Louisiana, USA), water is virtually free and seemingly ever-replenishable. It's not treated as a limited resource locally. It's all I've ever known regarding home use of water.

See, water is not really scarce in Germany (I could do with a little less rain), and it's not even extraordinarily expensive (though the purification of sewage has its price), but there's the general opinion that water is a valuable natural resource and therefore not to be wasted. I was brought up with that mindset. (Think: see the poor babies in Africa with no water, and YOU don't turn off the water when brushing your teeth!). Seems to be a cultural thing.

EinsteinsHund 07-17-2019 06:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dewey Finn (Post 21756248)
I used to have a showerhead with a valve built in, so you could shut off the water up there, without having to rebalance the temperature. But the handheld showerhead I now have doesn't have that feature.

I think I see the problem: do you usually have removable showerheads? Because I have (and that's usual here), and when I turn on the shower I take off the showerhead, aim it to the bottom of the shower next to my body, balance the temperature and then take my shower. If the showerhead is fixed and you have to balance the temperature every time after you have turned it off, then I understand the dilemma.

CarnalK 07-17-2019 07:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by krondys (Post 21756054)
Basically this, but I use my chest hair.

What?

Are you looking for compliments on your manly chest or sympathy for your bald head?

pulykamell 07-17-2019 07:55 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hilarity N. Suze (Post 21756051)
I am assuming that when you use bar soap you rub it in your hands and then rub it on your body.

Is this how most people use soap? I feel like I'm in some sort of bizarro world here where people are confused by shower gel and soap themselves up by rubbing soap onto their hands and then their body parts instead of directly on their body parts.

manson1972 07-17-2019 08:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CarnalK (Post 21756367)
Are you looking for compliments on your manly chest or sympathy for your bald head?

Why can't he get both?

(from a person who also uses chest hair to form a sudsy repository of shower gel)

BigT 07-18-2019 06:54 AM

I've done it before, but it uses a whole lot more soap, even if you use it with the water not getting on you at all. It always takes me at least two squirts to do my whole body. But, if I use one of those scrunchy shower sponges, I could cover my body multiple times with one squirt.

I don't marvel that people can do it that way. I just would think they'd not want to constantly be buying new soap. The same soap lasts months with daily washing. I'd be out in a week or two just using liquid soap directly.

BigT 07-18-2019 07:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21756258)
I think I see the problem: do you usually have removable showerheads? Because I have (and that's usual here), and when I turn on the shower I take off the showerhead, aim it to the bottom of the shower next to my body, balance the temperature and then take my shower. If the showerhead is fixed and you have to balance the temperature every time after you have turned it off, then I understand the dilemma.

It's not even the fixed head, as mine isn't fixed. It's that usually the only way to turn the water completely off is to turn either one giant nob all the way down to cold and then off (like a volume knob on an older car radio), or turn both the hot and cold knobs all the way down and off. There just usually isn't any way to turn the water off while keeping the temperature set.

That said, I have turned off the water completely while showering before--primarily when there is a shortage of hot water. I can shower in tepid water, but, if it crosses the threshold to cold, I can't keep the water on me but for a split second, not long enough to rinse off thoroughly. So I would do this if the hot water was running out, due to being the last one to shower.

(US soaps foam up a lot, so it takes more water to get it off. That's also why we rinse our dishes more than many others.)

BigT 07-18-2019 07:11 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756141)
More on personal shower differences: I dislike water splashing on my face (no, I don't swim). But I've always loved a good shower. How to reconcile? I learned long ago how to shower my entire body -- including applying/rinsing shampoo in my hair -- without getting water on my face.

Is that just that you face away from the shower when doing your hair, and tilt your head back like you're getting your hair washed at a barbershop? Because that's how I do it.

Though I do turn back around for the rest of my body. It's not the splashing that I don't like. I just don't like the sensation of water running over my face while my eyes are closed. I still splash water on my face to rinse off the facial soap.

Nava 07-18-2019 07:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BigT (Post 21756955)
(US soaps foam up a lot, so it takes more water to get it off. That's also why we rinse our dishes more than many others.)

More than UK soap, yes. More than German, French, Swedish or Spanish soap, no.

Mops 07-18-2019 09:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bordelond (Post 21756226)
Where I live (SE Louisiana, USA), water is virtually free and seemingly ever-replenishable. It's not treated as a limited resource locally. It's all I've ever known regarding home use of water.

That makes sense if you only take cold showers. But hot water would be a multiple of the cost of cold water just about everywhere I should presume.

I have purchased a shower timer clock, with suction cup to attach to the bathroom tiles, to try and make good on my commitment made to my wife to only have the hot water running for 2 min 30 s during showering, in order not to (allegedly) bankrupt us with the hot water bill.

My shower procedure:
- shower head and body, with warm water, running handheld showerhead over body, for ca. 10 s. Shut off water.
- put shower gel into cupped hand, rub into head and other hairy sites, spread on skin (from the top down, for obvious reasons). It helps very much that your body already is wet.
- Rinse off head and body with warm water, running handheld showerhead over body, for ca. 2 min 20 s. Change water temperature to cold.
- Run handheld showerhead over arms and legs, front and back, for at least two passes (I may use as much cold water as I like. Even if I don't like.) That last step is pretty invigorating. Shut off water.

Nava 07-18-2019 09:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mops (Post 21757157)
That makes sense if you only take cold showers. But hot water would be a multiple of the cost of cold water just about everywhere I should presume.

Americans tend to treat energy as if it has no cost.

bordelond 07-18-2019 10:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mops (Post 21757157)
That makes sense if you only take cold showers. But hot water would be a multiple of the cost of cold water just about everywhere I should presume.

We have a natural gas water heater in a state that generates more natural gas than it consumes and has extensive proven reserves of same. Heating the water is also very cheap locally.

bordelond 07-18-2019 10:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BigT (Post 21756961)
Is that just that you face away from the shower when doing your hair, and tilt your head back like you're getting your hair washed at a barbershop? Because that's how I do it.

Though I do turn back around for the rest of my body. It's not the splashing that I don't like. I just don't like the sensation of water running over my face while my eyes are closed. I still splash water on my face to rinse off the facial soap.

Exactly this, especially about the "barbershop" method of shampooing/rinsing in the shower.

Where we differ is that I really only tolerate water on my face with my eyes shut. I find even plain water on my sclera and tear ducts uncomfortable, and I am a lot more sensitive than other people to soap/shampoo in my eyes. I do still soap up my face and let the shower rinse it off, but I do it with caution and I "overclose" my eyes while doing so (a really consciously-applied, tight eye closing/scrunching).

Rough Draft 07-18-2019 12:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dewey Finn (Post 21756248)
I used to have a showerhead with a valve built in, so you could shut off the water up there, without having to rebalance the temperature. But the handheld showerhead I now have doesn't have that feature.

You can get an in-line cutoff valve at the hardware store and install it between the threaded pipe coming out of the wall and your handheld shower head. I have one and I love it. And they're like $2.

aruvqan 07-18-2019 03:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CarnalK (Post 21755614)
I guess I'm lucky and my hair and skin don't suffer because of what soap I use. So basically, my hair is a soap/shampoo reservoir during my shower. Put all you need on your head, lather it up and dispense where necessary.

Nice to know I am not the only person who does it that way =)

I actually discovered that Tresemme all in one shampoo makes a great moisturizing body wash - I don't use it on my hair, I do a sulphite/whatever free shampoo and conditioner on my hair and didn't want to waste an almost full bottle of tresemme that someone left behind. Works better than the Dove stuff and the Oil of Olay stuff I have also tried.

pulykamell 07-18-2019 04:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mops (Post 21757157)
That makes sense if you only take cold showers. But hot water would be a multiple of the cost of cold water just about everywhere I should presume.

It's not that much for us. A natural gas hot water heater here in Chicago with average usage of 64 gallons/day (~250 liters) costs a little less than $20/month to heat. It wouldn't make a significant dent in my bill to change a 10 minute shower to a 2 1/2 minute one. (Though I personally take baths.) And the water cost is the same for me, as our house does not have metered water (so whether I fill up a swimming pool or don't run the water at all, my water cost is the same. I should actually get around to switching it to metered water, as we don't generally run water for the grass during the summer or have a swimming pool or have any other kind of deep water usage activity.)

Hilarity N. Suze 07-18-2019 04:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pulykamell (Post 21756391)
Is this how most people use soap? I feel like I'm in some sort of bizarro world here where people are confused by shower gel and soap themselves up by rubbing soap onto their hands and then their body parts instead of directly on their body parts.

I don't know about most people. The only body part I rub soap on is my hands. Work into lather, apply lather elsewhere as needed. But at home I use liquid soap everywhere. The bar soap just sits there and is occasionally rubbed onto a washcloth or a pair of exfoliating gloves. Judging how long a bar will sit there (before it finally gets too disgusting and has to be thrown out) "most people" in my household don't use it at all.

Pardel-Lux 07-19-2019 05:29 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CarnalK (Post 21755614)
I guess I'm lucky and my hair and skin don't suffer because of what soap I use. So basically, my hair is a soap/shampoo reservoir during my shower. Put all you need on your head, lather it up and dispense where necessary.

This. Every morning. Gel is just soap in liquid form and you need just a wee little bit to clean your whole body and hair. And afterwards my hands are so clean and soft that it is just perfect for cleaning my contact lenses and putting them in my eyes and the day can start. Which it does, of course, without my help or encouragement.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:04 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.