Or at the very least your appearance.

There’s surely no arguing that hot showers are the jam. Even on the hottest of days, they’re as necessary as that morning cup of coffee. Right? It’s probably where we do our best thinking, plotting, and planning. It’s where we solve every world crisis and — maybe even a few of our own. It’s our safe place; stocked with all the necessary shampoos, soaps, loofahs, and god-only-knows what else. (Hey, no judgement.)

But, what if I told you… you’re doing it all wrong?

Before you panic, let me explain. No one wants to take away those fifteen thirty minutes of heaven. We have the utmost respect for your hot and steamy shower time. But, there’s a really cool trick that can literally change your life. Did you know, though, that dousing your body in scalding water (Our personal favorite!) is actually not so great for your skin? It opens you up to the risk of dryness if the indulging is happening on a regular basis. This isn’t good.

One of the really cool ways you can be sure to lock in moisture, increase circulation, and leave your skin and hair looking more insanely perfect is to hit yourself with some freezing cold H2O. Cold water will decrease the skin’s water loss; contributing to better skin hydration and that means chilly water does help improve your skin’s water content. It does so by making sure that moisture stays right where it’s needed instead of evaporating into the air. Believe it or not, cold water also reduces your skin’s sensitivity to irritants. (And, believe it — because we said so.) That’s why a hit of cold water may help guys with hypersensitive skin, such as those with eczema.

Prayers answered. (You’re welcome.)

But, what about the circulation? A cold-cold end to your shower can cause superficial blood vessels to constrict, which, can be beneficial to those who are prone to rosacea. Without that facial redness the skin tone/complexion will appear improved. More than the aesthetic benefits, cold water can influence the body’s general circulation as well. Cold water will also redirect blood flow to the deeper blood vessels in the body; improving blood flow to your heart. Fun fact: This improved blood return will help the body’s metabolism and processing of waste products.

Boom! (You’re welcome.)

Oh, but wait… there’s more. Yes, more benefits than skin and hair revitalization. In fact, some studies have shown that the dosing of one’s self with cold water can increase a person’s heart rate. (Trust us, you’ll feel it the second those icy beads of water touch your epidermis.) In our opinion, it makes for a better wake-up than coffee; it improves your mood, and increases your stores of brown “good fat” that burns calories/energy in order to produce heat throughout the day.

Some things to keep in mind before you jump into the mid-Atlantic on a dark December morning: Keep the water at or above 61 degrees; ideally the temperature is somewhere between 70-75 degrees for around 2-5 minutes. (That’s roughly 120 to 300 “Mississippi’s.”)

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