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Jun 18 2016
by Natalie Day

A Guide to Showering in College

By Natalie Day - Jun 18 2016
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One of the most intimidating parts of going to college is leaving your personal shower at home and sharing with dozens of other students. Whether you have a private bathroom or community bathrooms, these shower stalls have been used by tons of students before you. Here are some tips and tricks to help you brave showering in college.

Things to Bring:

1. Shower Shoes

While every college student is told to bring shower shoes, you definitely don't want to forget them. The showers in your college dorm have been used by dozens of people before you and are used multiple times daily. There are a lot of built up germs, as they might not be cleaned as often or as well as they should be. Pick up a simple pair of flip flops from the dollar store and you're good to go.

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2. Shower Caddy

Whether you're sharing a bathroom with one hundred students or just with your roommate, a shower caddy is the perfect catch-all to keep your things organized. There are three popular types of shower caddies: plastic, mesh and fabric. While the fabric shower caddies may be the cutest and most durable, they retain water, which often causes mold. For health concerns, it is better to purchase a plastic or mesh caddy, which resist water, rather than retain it.

3. Robe

One thing many college students leave at home is a bathrobe. You never know which classic TV moment might happen between the shower stall and inside your dorm room. The fire alarm could go off leaving you stranded in only your towel or it could fall off in front of your crush. To play it safe, it's smart to bring a secure robe to avoid any unfortunate circumstances.

4. Waterproof Headphones

Sharing a bathroom in college doesn't allow us to jam out to music in the shower. For those of you who can't live without your favorite Spotify playlist, you can purchase waterproof bluetooth headphones. They hook up to your phone so you can have a party of one without disturbing your classmates. Just remember to keep your singing to a minimum.

Things to Remember:

1. Keep it Clean

Even if you have a bathroom that is cleaned for you, tons of students share that bathroom. It's important to clean up after yourself and do your part to maintain a good environment. You wouldn't want to walk into a shower stall to find hair in the drain and spilled shampoo, so do your part to clean up after yourself.

2. Keep Time in Mind

While you may be used to 30 minute showers and endless hot water, you have to keep in mind that you're sharing a bathroom. The hot water is limited and there may be a line to use the shower behind you, so be diligent. This doesn't mean you have to rush through your showers during the school year, it just means to be conscious of other students. 

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3. Shaving

Along with the time concern, shaving becomes an issue. There's poor lighting, not the best water pressure or temperature, and it's time consuming. If you want to skip the potential razor burn and missed spots, you might want to use the sink to shave. There's better lighting, a place to sit, and you won't be holding up the shower stall. This is one you'll have to scope out once you move into your dorm and check out the bathroom.

4. When to Shower

In the first few weeks of school, you'll figure out a pattern to showering. Many people keep a shower schedule, always going in the morning or before bed, and others may be more random. After you have figured out the busy bathroom times, you can decide when to shower. If you shower at three in the afternoon or three in the morning, you may have the luxury of a long, hot shower, as opposed to first thing in the morning or before bed.

Overall, showering in college is not that much different than showering at home, you just don't have some of the luxuries. We're all in this together to power through and stay clean during school.

Lead Image Credit: Pascal Montsma, Free Images

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Natalie Day - Columbia College Chicago

Natalie Day is a freshman at Columbia College Chicago and is double majoring in acting and writing. She has traveled to Pine Ridge Indian Reservation and Jamaica for mission trips. Natalie spends her free time binge watching Netflix and working on her life long goal of becoming an old dog lady. Follow Natalie on Twitter and Instagram @nat__day.

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