Can Shower Mold/Bacteria Cause Acne, Folliculitis and Other Skin Infections?

Board Certified Dermatologist, Dr. Sherry Ingraham speaks with KPRC-TV Chan. 2 Health Reporter, Haley Hernandez about health dangers that may be lurking in your shower.


News Reporter: A thing a lot of us do not like to think about really, the bacteria in our showers.

News Reporter: I didn't want to think about it either, but we got to do Haley's story this morning. It's a big problem that could have big effects on your health. It could. Health reporter Haley Hernandez is here with the hidden dangers we're talking about. Haley?

News Reporter: They're saying eew.

Haley Hernandez: I know. You're calling my Haley, but you mean Debbie Downer. Right? You get clean in the shower, but have you thought about how clean the things are inside there? Well, your shampoo bottle, your conditioner, your razor, all stuff that you use daily, but do you ever clean them? Bacteria can grow in your shower, and then transfer that to your skin, and then you're in trouble. Everyone's shower has something growing.

Alexa: The body scrub? I think I've had that for about a year.

Haley Hernandez: We're the ones to blame.

Alexa: My razor, I just use until it starts, gets dull which is about a month for me.

Haley Hernandez: Dr. Sherry Ingraham of Advanced Dermatology says there's a hard and fast expiration date for items in the shower. Bacteria can lead to conditions of acne, folliculitis, and other skin infections.

Dr. Sherry Ingraham: It's like a giant Petri dish, so you really need to be aware of what's in there and keeping it clean and tossing things on a regular basis.

Haley Hernandez: The most frequently tossed tool should be your razor.

Dr. Sherry Ingraham: After three uses, toss it. If you don't, it can grow bacteria.

Haley Hernandez: The same can be true with natural loofahs, the ones that that look like a sponge.

Dr. Sherry Ingraham: Toss them after three weeks.

Haley Hernandez: If you're loofah is synthetic, it can stick around longer than three weeks if she says you dry it out between uses.

Dr. Sherry Ingraham: What you should do is every time you use one, keep it out of the shower. Let it air dry.

Haley Hernandez: These are all new guidelines for guilty gals gals like Alexa.

Alexa: I feel like I should be getting rid of the products that create mold on the bottom, and it looks like a little rusty, but I usually don't.

Haley Hernandez: What she doesn't realize is that by the time this gunk starts to accumulate on your shampoos and conditioners, it's already been compromised.

Dr. Sherry Ingraham: Sometimes you'll see green or dark coloration around the edge of a product. You can open it up and sometimes see even mold or bacteria growing in the lid of a product.

Haley Hernandez: You know that that's the obvious sign to throw it away. Right? Well, here's something that could give you a little more confidence in your clean. One of Dr. Ingraham's favorite products in the market right now is a Clarisonic. She says these are designed to not have coarse areas in them so you can... they can stay in the shower longer without growing bacteria.

News Reporter: See, I've been debating on whether to buy one of those forever.

News Reporter: Interesting.

Haley Hernandez: Oh, I like them.

News Reporter: I like it.

Haley Hernandez: I like them a lot. Now that I know-

News Reporter: That's yours? Personal?

Haley Hernandez: Actually, it is, yes. I run it in as a prompt, because now knowing that it doesn't grow as much bacteria, I feel better about using it, and leaving it in the shower.

News Reporter: And leaving it in the shower.

Haley Hernandez: Exactly.

News Reporter: All right.

News Reporter: All right. Eew. Thanks, Haley.

News Reporter: Now, we got to thank you now.

Haley Hernandez: That Petri dish that you have at home.

News Reporter: Oh boy.

Haley Hernandez: Yikes.