Has Soap Changed?

It could be simply that I am getting older, but I feel as though soap has changed. As the years go by, my skin gets drier, and my hair is less joyful. And by ‘joyful’ I mean less wavy, less springy, less everything. I don’t remember this being a problem when I was younger, but I could say that about a lot of things.

I now shower every other day instead of every day. That began a few years ago because I wanted to save water in California, but it continues now in Alberta. We have lots of water here, but I like to think I’m doing my bit for the environment. Even so, either way, showering is too drying.

I have tried changing soaps, and I found that even the soap that calls itself a beauty bar containing one quarter moisturizers is still drying me out. I have tried various supermarket soaps, handmade soaps, liquid soaps, bar soaps, and various unscented soap bars. Is it the soap, or my shampoo, or is it me? It’s a mystery.

I wash my face every morning and evening but, after I have done that, I have a face that doesn’t move. Worse, it seems to be shrinking into my bones. So, I try to make it more flexible by slathering it with facial creams. I have tried several different creams, but they all seem to have the same, limited, effect. After about five hours, I need to apply them again. It doesn’t matter if the cream is common or rare, cheap or expensive. They all dry out.

My spidey sense tells me I am being taken for a ride. First, I think the soaps are deliberately drying me out to force me to buy creams. Then I think the creams are only marginally beneficial so that they force me to buy more and more expensive moisturizers.

Image via 123RF.com

The trouble is, I don’t know what the alternative is. Is there an alternative to soap? If not, is there an alternative to showering? Perhaps the problem is in the water. But, no. That doesn’t bear thinking about.

Perhaps the problem is household heating and ventilation. That is promising as a cause and is satisfyingly unrelated to people or products. It is, however, something I cannot avoid.

Now that I think about it, the problem may simply be winter. I can’t avoid winter, either, but I like the idea of having it to blame. I blame winter for a lot of things including inactivity, mood, and carpet beetles, but I don’t know if I can add facial dryness to the list.

Perhaps what I need to do is wash less often. Hmmm. That idea appeals to me. It may mean, though, that I may become less appealing to others. Now the question becomes, how much do I care about what other people think of me? That, too, diminishes as the years go by.


  1. I agree with all you have shared. I never had dry skin issues prior to reaching my 70’s. At this point everything seems to have a drying effect on my skin. My hair seems less. Less strong, thick, manageable. And, of course, it’s changed color. Gray. Aging is definitely not for weak folks! New unexpected challenges appear almost daily. Be tough, my Friend! 😃

  2. I have many of the same dryness issues, but for me showering once a day is a must, and in the summer sometimes it’s twice a day. I appreciate the suggestion in the above comment and will check it out. I remember visiting older relatives when I was younger and thinking their house was stifling and they smelled old which I didn’t know whether it was not showering or wearing clothes over. I cannot help the maturing process, but I do not want to be ‘that’ old person. 🙂 Hope you find some products that work.

  3. I always get extremely dry hands from washing frequently, (something drinking lots of water leads to)…Anyway, I finally found that coconut soap is great for my hands. My face routine is altogether it’s own process!

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