How do I adult: Showering

Finishing up

Now that you are clean you will need to turn off the water and dry off. First turn off the water. Then open the curtain or door, and get the towel. I like to do most of my drying off while I am still standing in the shower. It helps to dry off starting at the top and working your way down. Pat your face dry with the towel, and then start rubbing the towel against your arms and chest and other wet body parts. Step out of the shower as you are drying your legs and feet – this cuts down on how much you drip water on the bathroom floor. You can also rub the towel against your hair to get at least some of the water out of it.

If you have sensitive skin and toweling off is uncomfortable, you can try to find the softest, fluffiest towel you can, or you can pat dry your entire body, rather than rubbing. Or, if soft and fluffy bothers you, there are also thin towels or coarse towels. Basically, try to find a towel that feels good against your skin.

Once you are dry, hang the towel back up on the towel rack so that it can dry too. If you’ve been wearing a shower cap, take it off and hang it from a hook somewhere it can dry.

Advanced notes

When showering, I highly recommend making a shower routine for yourself, and always doing everything in the same order. If you feel comfortable doing so, you can also interlace many of the above steps. For instance, when I shower it goes in this order:

Shampoo hair
Wash face
Rinse face
Rinse hair
Condition hair
Wash body
Rinse body
Rinse hair

You can find what works for you and stick with it, or just go in the order outlined in this post. Also, while this was long and detailed, many people can go through all of these steps in only 5-10 minutes, so showering does not have to take a super long time if you don’t want it to.

Notes on hair

If you have long hair – shoulder length or longer – I would not recommend washing it every day unless your hair gets very greasy or is otherwise unmanageable when unwashed. Long hair can get brittle if it’s washed too often, even if you are very good about conditioning. Washing every other day or every three days can be completely ok. If you have trouble telling when your hair needs to be washed, simply choose certain days of the week to be hair-washing-days, and always wash your hair on those days.

If you’d like to see more How do I adult? posts, please let me know! Also, if there is anything that you’d like to see me try to tackle, let me know that too. No topic is too small.


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7 responses to “How do I adult: Showering

  1. I have a LOT of trouble showering with any kind of regularity. It’s not the steps that confuse me, though. If anything, it’s because I see ALL the steps I need to do, and it wears me out before I even start. Executive function issues don’t exactly help, either.

    • I definitely hear you there. That’s actually pretty much why I put the basic steps on their own pages – it really helps if you can find a way to only focus on the step you are doing, and maybe the one right after.

      • I wish I could! But I’m always afraid I’ll run out of energy halfway and then I’ll be standing there with my hair full of soap and no energy to dry off and get clothes on. Scary!

        • Ohh, that sounds like a spoons thing! Yeah, that makes it a lot trickier.

          I wonder if I could come up with a post talking about managing spoons.

  2. Great post, can’t wait to see more of the series.

    A few notes I’d like to make:
    1: If you have very short hair, e.g. less than 1 inch, the shower cap may not be necessary as your hair will dry very quickly anyway. I also happen to like the sensation of the water hitting my scalp so I don’t use one. And I know this will mostly apply to males

    2: There are other options to a washcloth. Sponges and loofahs (or luffas) can be used if you prefer the texture.

    3: I also keep a small scrubbing brush in the shower for particularly persistent dirt and for getting under my fingernails.

    • These are all very good points!

      On point 2 – I was trying to find a good balance between details and options, and not giving so many options that it looks overwhelming. I’m still figuring out how to do this, and the washcloth portion was definitely one of the toughest. There are just SO many options for what to use to wash one’s body. I also left out liquid soap (which goes well with loofahs) and other types of soap preferences people might have (I am very picky and only use hand made, cold process soaps). Also, sometimes people with long hair can skip conditioning – I rinse my hair with vinegar, and my bf, who has very long hair, oils it with olive oil once a week. Neither of us condition.

      So yeah. I definitely left out a lot of options, but I feared it would be overwhelming to people who are struggling how to figure out showering at all.

    • Oh, also. THANK YOU! I’m so glad you like the post!