Monday, February 26, 2007

Brain teaser?

A puzzle, if you will. Matt and I have a disagreement about the answer.

I like to take hot showers. But they dry out my skin. Matt said I should take a less hot shower. I said that I'm already cold when I get out of the shower now. Enter the dispute.

I say that taking a less hot shower will make me feel colder when I get out, because I will have a lower surface temperature to start with, which will cause the effects of evaporation to make me colder than I am with a hot shower (i.e. if hot shower body temp is 8 and warm shower body temp is 6, then an evaporation factor of 2 will leave me with a lower final surface temperature with the warm shower).

Matt says that taking the warm shower will make me feel warmer when I get out compared to the hot shower, because the difference in the two temperatures is smaller (using the same numbers above, and a room temperature of 4, the difference between the hot shower temp and the room temp is greater). He assumes that the effects of evaporation are negligible.

Thoughts or opinions?


Carly said...

Take the hottest shower ever, and then use cocoa butter when you get out to keep your skin from getting dry.

Courtney said...

Haha, good advice...but which one of us is *right*?

Anonymous said...

Mmm, I think neither of you are quite correct. Try taking a shower that is progressively less hot over the course of a couple of weeks. Your body has acclimated to the super hot shower and when you step out the difference is bigger and you've drained the water out of your skin. Start taking colder showers and in a couple of weeks you'll not notice it.


Robyn said...

I think it's the hair, which would explain why it's a girl thing. Warmer hair = warmer head = warmer body. I'm always colder after getting out if I wash myself and not my hair, no matter how hot the shower was. So I crank up the heat...I'm experimenting with super-moisturizing soap, I'll let you know how it goes :P

Carly said...

taking a hotter shower will raise the entire temperature of the bathroom, assuming you keep the door closed to trap the steam. it should be like a sauna in there when you get out. taking a colder shower would only make you colder, i think. however, if you're already cold from being IN the shower, then you probably wouldn't even notice continuing to be cold once you get out. in fact, drying the cold water off your body might make you "feel" warmer, even though your body temp would truly be lower than if you took a hot or warm shower.

my question is - are you sure adjusting the temperature of your shower would actually help the moisture of your skin? i think the time spent in the shower, and the type of soap used are bigger factors.

Carly said...

(that was eric, not carly)

Courtney said...

Soap and length of shower do affect it as well, but temperature definitely has an effect. Link

And we usually have the bathroom door open since it's pretty much the only ventilation the room gets.