So is Sharing Bar Soap Bad?

Cecil seems to imply that it is not but he’s not talking specifically about bar soap.

So how bad is it?

Also what is the worst thing that could come from sharing a bar of soap?

Where does he imply that sharing soap is bad?

You wouldn’t use the soap after me if you knew what I washed last.

Nowhere. I guess the sentence might be oddly worded. I said that he implies that it’s NOT bad.

I suppose it would depend on how conducive the surface of a bar of soap is to viruses and bacteria; I imagine it isn’t very.

How do you folks use your soap? Rubbing the bar against your body?

I don’t do that. I lather my hands up (just like lathering my hands when washing my hands), then set the soap down and apply the lather to the rest of my body. Yes, it takes iterations, but I am thoroughly rinsing my hands between applications of soap.

I would imagine that even if you rub the soap against your body parts, if you then rub the soap with your hands under the water stream you will remove any cooties.

Same here. Some people use a wash cloth even. I don’t do that but I do the hands lathering up and then put the soap wherever it needs to go.

That’s how I do it. Rub with the bar of soap until I am lathered up, then continue with just my hands. I can’t be the only one.

Uh oh. I foresee a debate with rage that burns greater than “Shoes off or on in the house” and “Toilet Paper: Over or Under?”

I rub the bar directly on the parts under attention, either my own or a another person’s.

But the article linked to above does not address the question - is there a chance of transmitting disease by first washing one smelly butt, and then your face?

I use the same bar of soap at the gym, for instance. The sequence is lather up, then rub the lathery bar on my face and ears, then neck, armpits, crotch, feet, and butt. So, if germs can live on soap, it is possible that I am transferring butt germs to my face. Is that a danger?


Of course.

You just rinse the soap when you’re done. You know the soap is clean when all the body hair is rinsed off - right?

Maybe. Life is full of risks. This isn’t one I’m going to lose sleep over.

I would hope not when the correct “answers” are so obvious. In order: off, over, and use a wash cloth (sponge, pouf, or whatever you prefer) or better yet switch to a liquid soap or body wash that can be shared without direct contact.


And also this (to all of the above mentioned debates).

Just wash the soap as the last step of your bath/shower.

You can wash it by rubbing it against your butt while it’s wet.

Well, that’s what sparked the argument. I don’t really care for using one of those gauze sponges with liquid soap but, apparently, bar soap will transfer “fungi and bacteria.” :rolleyes:

JOEY: Hey, why can’t we use the same toothbrush, but we can use the same soap?

CHANDLER: Because soap is soap. It’s self-cleaning.

JOEY: Alright, well next time you take a shower, think about the last thing I wash and the first thing you wash.

Is that official medical advice? :dubious:

I’ve never used a wash cloth*. I don’t get the aversion to touching yourself. Hands get lathered, hands apply lather, hands get rinsed. Repeat.

*Okay, I have upon occassion taken a “sink bath”, i.e. used water from the sink to rinse off without going full shower. Then I use a wash cloth. But in the shower, no.

I used a wash cloth, but it’s most definitely not due to an aversion to touching myself. It cleans easier. It’s abrasive. It’s much more satisfying. When I travel in Mexico, it’s uncommon for hotels to offer wash cloths (whereas in the USA and Europe, they’re always offered). When I’m forced to wash with only my hands, I feel like all I’m doing is coating myself with suds.

For me, it’s not an aversion to touching myself. I like that I can actually scrub with the washcloth. It’s kind of hard to do that with your hands, or a bar of soap alone.