To Bathe or To Shower?

Stop asking Google to solve this for you and run the one-and-only test for yourself.

If you ask Google “whether tis nobler” to bathe regularly or shower regularly, you will be met with numbers about how much water it takes to fill a “standard” tub versus how much water per minute is released into your shower via a low-pressure shower head.

No one writing these articles knows the size of your tub. No one writing these articles knows how deep or shallow you like your bath to be for regular use. No one writing these articles knows whether or not you have a low-pressure shower head.

Some of these knuckleheads actually think that “take shorter showers” is realistic advice for the general population when the general population has evolved to feel time in circadian rhythms, menstrual cycles (for females), and seasonal changes not in minutes and seconds.

If you really want to know which is best for you, run this test for yourself.

The Universal Shower-versus-Bath Test

  1. Pick the bathtub where this test will take place because it is where you already regularly clean yourself. If it’s just a shower (no tub) than your test is complete because bathing isn’t an option.
  2. Take a bath when and “how” you would usually take a shower. Make a note of to what point you filled the tub before draining any water.
  3. Take a shower when and how you would next take a shower in your usual hygiene schedule. But be sure to stop up the water so that the water collects as you shower. After your shower, step out and make a note of to what point the tub has filled during the time of your shower.
  4. Compare the two depths. Whichever is shallower is the more cost-effective.

Stop confusing yourself with the numbers online or stressing out over trying to take shorter showers (especially if you have any anxiety-based condition of any kind, stress causes us to feel like we’re going faster/hurrying up but actually causes even the most routine tasks to take longer). Take a bath and then take a shower.

Or — if  you really want bathing to win — take the shower first and then just make sure not to take baths using any more water than what you measured in the shower portion of the test.

Do the work, and then do what you want (making whatever adjustments you feel necessary).

Also published on Medium.