It’s tough to pinpoint exactly when my obsession with cleanliness first started. I’d estimate it was circa late- summer 1987. After five days at Brownie camp when all I had was a flannel and cold water to wash with once a day, taking a hot bath after coming home stinking of campfire smoke was quite something.
Fast-forward 34 years and I don’t think I’ve ever gone more than 24 hours without a shower. In fact, on one occasion recently, I had three showers in a day – one before a work meeting, another after a run later in the day, and a third after going for an impromptu swim.
While I’ll admit three might be a smidgen excessive – even for this clean freak – I hate the thought of not being able to start the day fresh.
Learning recently that acting couple Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis don’t wash themselves or bathe their children unless they can see dirt on them made me feel a bit queasy. And my crush on actor Jake Gyllenhaal definitely lessened when he waded in, admitting he ‘doesn’t do it all that much’ and finds bathing unnecessary. But when I gave these celebrities’ ideals more thought, I wondered whether perhaps I should take a leaf out of their books and cut down on washing. After all, they’re Hollywood royalty, right?
So, with three billion litres of water wasted in the UK every day, I decided to do my bit for the environment and follow in their (probably smelly) footsteps by shunning the shower for a week.
Here’s how I got on.
Day One is OK. Last night, knowing what lay ahead of me, I showered right before I went to bed, so after brushing my teeth when I wake up, I still feel pretty fresh. I’m missing the usual wake-up a shower gives me, though, so when my husband Jon, 48, bounds out of the en suite bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, I realise it’s going to be a long week.
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