When in comes to a winter bath some might say the hotter the better – it isn’t worth doing if you don’t come out sweating!  While others like nothing better than a body-temperature esque 40C or so to soothe away the stress of the day. But what is best from a skin care perspective?  Are we doing ourselves more harm than good by sweating it out or are we missing one of life’s simple pleasures by going cold-turkey?  Let’s look at the science.

Our body sits at a rather cozy and oh-so-constant (unless sick) 37 ish C on the inside while the outside can get as cold as 6C or as warm as 37C depending on where we are, what we are doing and how long we do it for.   It is important for our insides to remain at a constant temperature as this provides the optimum environment for our organs to work, blood to flow and water to be managed. Our bodies are constantly trying to keep things in balance – the term for this is homeostasis.

Our outside is a different story! If you think about it, it is important for us to ‘feel’ cold or warm on the outside so that we can make the environmental changes needed to help our insides in regulating temperature. Our skin has many nerve cells running through it to pick up on heat and cold as well as other stimuli.

But does a hot bath do damage?

A number of scientific studies have shown skin to become more permeable (the ease of which things can pass through) to water as the temperature rises (here is a study that is free to view). This would lead me to believe that as the bath temperature increases, your […]