June 17, 2024 at 9:27 am

Is It Better To Shower In The Morning Or At Night? Scientists Say It Depends On What Your Goals Are.

by Trisha Leigh

Source: Shutterstock

You might think that things like when you shower are a matter of preference.

If there’s one thing that’s true of this internet-driven world we live in, though, it’s that people are going to find out if there are actual answers to the questions no one really wanted to ask.

So, shower at night or in the morning?

Around 42% of American adults like to start their day nice and clean, as opposed to 25% who like to do it before going to bed.

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38% percent shower “at some point” in the evening.

Let’s find out if there’s a “right” answer to this one, or if the key is really what you’re looking to get out of your shower and not the other way around.

The case for showering in the morning

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Your body relies on certain cues to regulate its circadian rhythm, and a shower around the same time of day can trigger your brain to wake up and ready itself for the day.

If you take a cool(ish) shower, this effect would be even more pronounced, as cool water releases neurotransmitters like serotonin, cortisol, dopamine, and norepinephrine – all crucial for regulating emotions and reducing stress.

A morning shower that ends with at least 90 seconds of cold water has been shown to reduce the number of a person’s sick days by one third. It also has been shown to improve quality of life and energy levels.

“Even though the vast majority of participants reported a variable degree of discomfort during cold exposure, the fact that 91% of participants reported the will to continue such routine is perhaps the most indicative of any health or work benefit.”

Dermatologist Gary Goldenberg says that for most people, though, it’s just about feeling clean.

“Humans tend to perspire at night. When you wake up in the morning, there’s all this sweat and bacteria from the sheets that’s just kind of sitting there on your skin. … There are so many reasons to shower in the morning. “

The case for a night shower

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The same goes for the evening shower, though, says dermatologist Alok Vij.

“A shower helps to wash off all the grit and grime, environmental toxins and pollutants that might negatively impact your skin. It helps you get in bed with a clean slate.”

This goes even more for people who work physically demanding jobs.

Oddly, even though a morning shower can help wake us up, one in the evening can have the opposite effect.

That’s because it can trigger your circadian rhythm to realize it’s time to wind down for bed.

But that’s not all, says sleep expert Janet K. Kennedy.

“The body naturally cools down as bedtime approaches, in sync with the circadian rhythm. Showering artificially raises the temperature again and allows for a faster cool down, which seems to hasten sleep.”

The ideal time to shower at night is around 90 minutes before getting into bed. Then, it’s likely to improve sleep quality and efficiency, as well as helping you to nod off more quickly.

Source: Shutterstock

So, Vij says there isn’t a right or wrong way, because there are benefits to showering either time of day.

“There’s no definitive answer for the global population on whether to take an evening vs. morning shower. But for each individual, there tends to be a right answer. And it’s all based on preference.”

As long as you’re clean and happy and refreshed, the shower has done it’s job – no matter what time of day you take it.

“Experiment to find your favorite version of yourself – if you’ve always showered in the morning, maybe try the opposite for a week and see how it makes you feel. And if it makes you feel awesome, then stick with it. And if not, go back.”

It’s as simple as that.

I love it when science tells you to just do what makes you happy.

If you found that story interesting, learn more about why people often wake up around 3 AM and keep doing it for life.