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Your Personal Care Routine Relies on Water

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Access to water as a precious resource has directed the growth of civilizations, and has impacted many aspects of human life, from agriculture and field irrigation to personal care.

These water-reliant parts of daily life improved vastly with the advent of the modern water system. The ability to pipe water was a major breakthrough for civilization: it enabled cities and towns to bring fresh, clean water to residents from further out in the country. It also enabled a decrease in contamination and increased access to washing water, which greatly improved public health and wellness. This encouraged the growth of our personal hygiene routines, which have only continued to evolve.

Personal Water Usage

Over the last 50 years, the growth of cities has resulted in the need for large water supply systems capable of supporting millions of people. In the past, people in rural areas would have to supply their own water (drilling a well and pumping it into their homes). As well-drilling in densely packed cities is impossible, the technological advancement of water supply systems had important implications for our resources and lifestyles.

Today, the average person uses 80-100 gallons of water every day in their personal care routines alone. USGS data shows that the top use of water in the home is the toilet, which can use anywhere from 1.5-4 gallons of water every flush. The second largest use of water indoors comes from showers and baths. Showers can use up to five gallons of water per minute, the sink tap can use up to two gallons of water per minute, and a bath can take up to thirty five gallons to fill.



It's important to note not only the usage rates, but how fast these rates have grown in a short span of time. Daily showers only became possible in the last 70 years. In fact, in the 1950s, washing your hair once every 2 weeks was considered "often." Our expectations and demands of our water systems have shifted quickly in just 1 generation. This has resulted in a pace of water usage so fast that we're using up groundwater faster than it can be naturally replenished through precipitation.

In places where water is plentiful, our reliance on water is barely even noticed. However, water shortages are becoming a modern day reality in places like California, Oregon, Puerto Rico, where the smallest amounts of water can make a huge impact, and minimizing your water usage is a requirement, not a goal.

Innovating for a Change

Experts are predicting major water shortages on many more parts of the globe by 2040. That's just 24 years from now. There's a sense of urgency present as the public witnesses the effects of water shortages first hand, which has inspired new technology and products that help cut down on water usage.

One of the first areas of innovation are low-flow shower heads, which cut down on water usage in a variety of ways:

Some showerheads aerate the water, creating a more powerful spray with less water -- and a new showerhead atomizes the water into a spray of tiny droplets Valves in the piping can reduce water flow Certain units have on/off valves at the head, so that the water can easily be shut off during soaping Handheld attachments make showering more efficient, as users can accurately direct the water flow

Public perception is that less water being used means a less delightful shower, but these innovations are working to provide people with water-saving solutions that work for the modern lifestyle. Similar technology is being applied to faucets, washing machines, and even toilets to reduce water usage.

Consumers are even starting to tailor other parts of their personal care routines to minimize the impact on water use. The no-poo method, which encourages people to wash their hair less frequently and with fewer products, has gained traction. For many, this change also leads to healthier hair and shorter showers. For those who are interested in cutting down on hair care products but are looking for a different option than the no-poo method, dry shampoo has become a staple. While the appeal was initially for those of us who are interested in saving time and cutting down on products, the implications of fewer hair washes on our water consumption are huge.

Everyday Water Savings

If you're looking contribute (and we hope you are!) start by calculating your water usage, and look for areas where you can cut back on your usage.

Start with small habit changes, like turning off the shower while you shave or condition your hair, speeding up your morning rinse. Rinse your razor in a cup of water, instead of running the tap. Don't shower because it's time to, shower because you need to. Create a quick shower playlist, and time your shower to your tunes -- streamline your routine and trim your water usage.

Try out products which help cut down your water usage, like dry shampoo, or have an environmentally conscious brand. Using coconut oil to shave will cut down on the harmful products going down the drain, and will leave you with moisturized skin. Our live probiotic spray has also been shown to help people cut down on their product usage and showering, so mist away!

If you're ready to look for small changes around the house, getting your leaky taps fixed is a great way to start. A leaky faucet can waste up to one hundred gallons of water per day!

Big or small, the changes you make can have an impact. Let's rethink health, and together create a sustainable, healthy world.





 
 
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