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Experts: You Probably Don't Need A Shower Every Day

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- Some people take a shower several times a day, while others wait to wash and get in once a week.

As CBS 2's Cindy Hsu reported, everyone is on a different schedule. But an expert said there is an ideal schedule to follow.

"I mean, when I'm in college and I'm really stressed out and have exams, it's like every three days," said college student Clancy Hennigan.

"I do it every day when I come home from school," said one 16-year-old girl in Central Park. Three of her friends chimed in that they also shower every day.

And some people exceed the daily guideline.

"I need to take a shower like two times a day," said Quinten Reaves, 13.

But experts said if you shower more than once a day, you are overdoing it.

"Not a good idea," said Dr. Sorana Segal-Maurer of New York Hospital Queens. "It really strips the skin of the protective oils and even some of the good bacteria that we have growing on skin."

Segal-Maurer said if you don't have any medical issues, hitting the shower a few times a week is best. And she advised not to follow the habits of Donnell Whitmore, 13.

"I like to take (showers) for an hour," he said. "But (my mother) doesn't let me."

"I have to knock at the door and make him come out, and there's steam like coming out of the shower," said Donnell's mother, Paulene Foster. "I'm like, 'Seriously?'"

It turns out mother knows best in this case. Segal-Maurer said you should keep your showers short – about five minutes. Your showers should also be cool, she said.

"Lukewarm showers are better than hot showers -- they tend to strip the skin," Segal-Maurer said. "Don't be rough on your skin; no exfoliating all the time, harsh rubbing with the washcloth."

If you exercise all the time or have a job that gets down and dirty, experts said it is OK to shower every day. But you should rinse lightly with mild soap, paying extra attention to the sections below the belt.

And while you don't need to wash your whole body every day, when it comes to your hands, experts said you need to wash them every day and often.

And if you're a bath lover, there are some guidelines too.

"I would take a bath twice, three times a day if I could," said Quinten's mother, Daphne Reaves.

It turns out long, hot baths are not a good idea. They strip the oils off the skin. Thus, you are advised to so go for the showers, but keep them short and sweet.

And when it comes to public showers at such venues as gyms or colleges, you should be sure to wear flip-flops to protect yourself.

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