What’s the Best Time to Take a Shower?

man in shower

You need to shower: but when? What’s the best time?

Do you really even need to shower?

Let’s state this right up front. There are good reasons to take a shower. There’s a question of avoiding distracting smells, the process of washing away dirt and bacteria, and the simple fact showering feels good. 

If you don’t shower, you don’t spend the time you would if you had showered. You also save water, though that water expenditure can be mitigated by using water-efficient fixtures and not spending too long in the shower.

Undoubtedly, on the question of showering at all, you’ll at least want to shower sometimes. You’ll want to decide the best time to do it. Too often, too many times during the day, and you’ll have wasted time and resources.

Elephant cleaning themselves off on a riverbank.
Some people say humans don’t need to shower. Can you really take their contention seriously when other creatures with minimal hair and fur (as compared to others) also clean themselves off in the water? Showering and being clean feels good!

That’s right. Even if you’re in a highly humid climate. You can shower too much even there.

Taking a midday shower

If it’s a day when you work out at the gym or play sports, the best idea is to shower in the afternoon before you put on your clothes for the day.

You can still clean up a bit at bedtime or in the morning. You can wash your face and arms at the end of the day and get ready for bed. After you wake, you can splash water on your face and be ready for the day. 

If you don’t play sports or work out at the gym, showering at midday seems to be a little bit more complicated. Showering facilities often aren’t available outside of locker rooms and gyms.

Sweaty woman wearing orange tank top who has just worked out.
Hitting the shower after working out is part of recovery.

If that’s the case, there are advantages to showering in the morning and advantages to taking a shower in the evening. 

Deciding which advantages are more compelling is a matter of personal preference. 

Showering in the morning. 

One could argue that taking a shower is even more invigorating than drinking a cup of coffee or any other beverage with caffeine. Splashing water on the face is a quick way of waking anyone—even if they’re in a deep sleep. 

Another big advantage to showering in the morning is that personal care products like soap, shampoo, and conditioner have a good smell. When you use the products, the smell gets on you, and afterward, you will smell the best you’re ever going to smell that day. 

Does it matter?

If you work or go to school in close quarters, having a co-worker or classmate who smells good is a plus.

If you’re that classmate, that good-smelling person could be you! Even if they don’t tell you about it, you might have made a small contribution toward making their day great.

The biggest disadvantage to showering in the morning is it could put a strain on your schedule and cause you to be late. If you’re going to shower in the morning, you’re going to have to wake up on time. If you wake up late, you could end up even later if you plan to shower in the morning. That may or may not be a disadvantage in your situation. 

Another disadvantage is that everybody else tends to shower in the morning. In your living situation, you could run out of hot water and end up having to take a cold shower. Some people find that extremely unpleasant. They tend not to clean themselves with cold water because they’re uncomfortable. It takes mental toughness to take a shower in very cold water. 

Showering in the evening 

Showering feels good. When you shower before going to bed, it feels relaxing at the end of the day. That’s important because that can help you go to sleep quicker. 

Another big advantage of showering in the evening before bed is avoiding the morning rush. There will be hot water for you, barring any mechanical failure. 

If you suffer from allergies, showering in the evening helps control allergens that might get on your sheets and pillows. 

It also contributes to feeling cool at the end of the day, especially in the summer. It’s easier to sleep well when you feel cool than when you feel hot. 

While showering during the day, you can use personal care products to please others with a good scent; at night, you can use personal care products like lavender soap help you go to sleep more quickly. Lavender has been shown to aid in sleeping.

The choice is yours 

There are many factors to consider when choosing when to shower. It all comes down to your personal preference and your schedule. For most people, it’s a good thing when you do something strenuous like play sports that gets you sweaty. In that case, a shower after an activity makes a lot of sense. You’ll be able to enjoy hot water, and allergens will have less time to collect on your skin.

For further reading:

Should You Shower at Night or in the Morning? (seventeen.com)

Shower at Night or in the Morning? Science Has the Answer (wideopeneats.com)

The best time to shower — Why night showers are healthier – (Reviewed)

Company makes sleep-promoting soap with no chemicals and few ingredients

Find and keep a great morning routine

A great bedtime routine will give you superpowers

Bedtime rituals


James Cobb, RN, MSN is the founder of the Dream Recovery System, one of the top sleep blogs on the Internet as determined by Feedspot. He’s dedicated to giving his readers the edge when it comes to their health.

The Dream Recovery System uses affiliate links on this website. If you click on a link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission. This does not affect our opinions. 

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