Do you relish an ultra-steam shower, the kind that makes your skin red and your cheeks flushed? You’re not alone. A long, hot shower can be extremely relaxing. Unfortunately, it might not always be the best choice.

Hot showers have their pros and cons. Generally speaking, it’s recommended that you stick to 10-minutes (or less) lukewarm showers. Plus, you’ll want to moisturize your skin when you get out of the shower to help it re-hydrate.

Health Pros and Cons of How Showers

Con: Hot Water Can Aggravate Pre-Existing Skin Conditions

Long, hot showers can strip the protective epidermis layer of your skin, increasing the chance of infection. It can also aggravate pre-existing skin conditions, such as rosacea and eczema.

Con: Hot Showers Can Cause Breakouts

Because hot showers strip your skin of the natural oils and healthy bacteria that protect it from external forces, hot showers can cause your skin to become dry and trigger breakouts.

Con: How Showers Can Damage Your Complexion

Because hot showers weaken your capillaries, they can cause the red veins around your nose and cheeks to become pronounced. These veins are very elastic. Over time as they are repeatedly dilated they can remain visibly enlarged.

Pro: Hot Showers Can Clear Congestion

Standing in a warm and steamy environment can help reduce congestion and provide relief if you have a head cold. Hot showers can also help alleviate cramps and muscle pain, such as those suffered during menstruation and after a hard workout.

Pro: Hot Showers Can Reduce Puffy Eyes

Because the heat from a hot shower can help dilate your lymphatic vessels, it can help drain excess fluid from around your eyes, reducing the puffiness.

Pro: How Showers Can Help You Fall Asleep Faster

When you go to sleep, your body’s temperature drops. How showers allow your body’s temperature to rise drastically and then drop quickly as you get out of the shower. This can help you feel relaxed and induce sleep.

Get More Tips About Bathroom Safety