With a national water shortage imminent and hosepipe bans announced across southern England, it may be time to reconsider your daily shower habit.
But we still want to be clean…so how do you cleanse without water? Enter the trend for ‘selective washing’.
It sounds like something an unhygienic teenage boy might recommend, but it can actually be very effective — and is kinder to the planet than taking daily showers.
With a national water shortage imminent and hosepipe bans announced across southern England, it may be time to reconsider your daily shower habit
While similar to the strip wash of previous generations, this H2O-free freshen-up is far more pleasant, even indulgent, thanks to a slew of new products.
And it can be much better for our skin, too, giving it a break from water that’s too hot, which can be very drying, compromising the skin barrier and leading to redness and irritation.
And then there’s the time saving. Star hair stylist Sam McKnight created his genius Hair Cleanse Cloths after dealing with models backstage at fashion shows. Their hair would be loaded with product and he’d need to get it ‘clean — and fast, so we can style it and get them out on the runway’.
Still reticent? See how I got on when I dry-cleaned from top to toe . . .
CLEAN HAIR CLOTHS
In a matter of minutes, the wetness has gone and hair is left beautifully fragranced, with a visible lift and reduced frizz
Lazy Girl Biodegradable Hair Cleanse Cloths by Sam McKnight (£17 for 20, sammcknight.com)
The first thing I notice about these cloths is their divine fragrance; the second is their pleasing dampness. I section my hair and rub the cloth in small, circular movements along the parting, and then pull it along the length of my fringe.
In a matter of minutes, the wetness has gone and my hair is left beautifully fragranced, with a visible lift and reduced frizz.
This spray magically transforms a square of loo roll into a cleansing wipe. It can be used anywhere, but is particularly designed for your intimate areas
Luna Daily The Everywhere Spray-to-Wipe (£8, luna-daily.com)
This spray magically transforms a square of loo roll into a cleansing wipe. It can be used anywhere, but is particularly designed for your intimate areas.
I’ve used wipes before, but have always been worried about the environmental impact. None of those fears here.
These give a feeling of freshness with zero irritation. The formula is gentle, with no soap — just thermal water and anti-microbial, hydrating ingredients.
35 Thousand Clever Cleansing Balm (£35, oxygenboutique.com)
This is a travel essential of mine. It shifts make-up, pollution and general grime, leaving skin feeling squeaky clean — all with no water. In a rush, I just tissue it off, but I prefer to use it with a face cloth. The brand’s Refresh & Revive Mist is also brilliant as an on-the-go rinse.
Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Exfoliating Body Treatment (£58 for 91g, cultbeauty.co.uk)
I want the softness and even tone that a body scrub gives me, but not the mess. So I was overjoyed when I discovered these cloths. They totally transform my skin — blemishes are blitzed and dryness ditched.
The cloths feel damp, but not overly so, and do a better job of resurfacing skin than their grainy counterparts, which use up litres of water when you wash them. However, they are individually wrapped and non-biodegradable, so should probably be used sparingly.
SHOWER IN A SHEET
These are super-soft and loaded with hydrating ingredients, so don’t dry out the skin like other wipes can
Yuni Beauty Shower Sheets (£19 for 12, feelunique.com)
There are body wipes and then there are sheets. Yuni’s version are oversized and wet enough to deliver a really good clean.
These are super-soft and loaded with hydrating ingredients, so don’t dry out the skin like other wipes can.
I use one all over my body and afterwards really do feel fresh. They contain peppermint leaf oil which has deodorising anti-bacterial properties, and neem leaf extract, which calms the skin. They are biodegradable and compostable.
Kevin Murphy Young.Again Dry Conditioner (£26, kevinmurphystore.com)
If I’M trying to extend my blow dry, for the best results I’ve discovered I need to combine a dry shampoo spray or cloth with a conditioning spray. The latter works to intensively hydrate, smooth and soften.
I love this one by Kevin Murphy as it’s a superfine mist which, when brushed through the hair, turns straw into silk.
Caution: avoid the roots as it can make hair go lank.