This is an experiment I have been doing, and it’s based on the now popular theory of improving our body’s natural microbiome. The basic idea is that there are hundreds of species of viruses living on and in us all the time, and almost all of them are supporting our good health. Of course there are some that are not making us healthier and some of them make us sick, so the problem becomes how do we encourage our good viruses and help them suppress the bad ones?

Using various super-potent anti-biological skin cleansers may be fine for people in dangerous hospital settings where the medical personnel and their patients’ skin routinely gets exposed to infectious disease organisms. However, for a person living at home these bacteria-killing cleansers may cause more harm than good because they remove our natural skin’s living environment and replace it with a sterile desert, devoid of life. That dead desert may be okay for a short while when returning from an infectious environment like a doctor’s office, but as a long-term situation a dead skin can’t protect the person inside that skin properly.

Here’s what to do, if you are compelled by circumstance to use antibacterials for cleansing your exposed skin. Make a point of keeping some portion of your body in a more natural state by not washing it with the heavy-duty antibacterial stuff. Choose an area of healthy skin like the sides of your stomach or your upper legs because they are usually covered with clothing, and therefore not so exposed to dangerous germs, and are naturally good places to preserve your natural living skin’s biota.

When taking a shower you may use normal shampoos for washing your hair, and some of that suds will naturally wash over those special parts of your body, but just let them be rinsed off with warm shower water, without scrubbing. Of course you would probably want to wash your armpits, genital areas, and feet with normal cleansers, but avoid using the antibacterials as they are too deadly. Washing the hands with antibacterials may be okay if they have been exposed to bad things, but keep it to a minimum.

Now here is the special suggestion; take your cleaned hands and rub them over the natural only-rinsed areas of your skin to pick up some natural viruses and oils that have been there before you bathed. These areas should have plenty of healthy bacteria and viruses, and they are the ones you want to rub all over your body to restore your skin’s natural living surface. Make sure to rub first those areas of your tummy or leg that look healthiest before you rub those parts of your body that you cleansed with soap, detergent, or antibacterial creams, so as to transfer good stuff to those too clean areas. If you have some patches of skin that are dry or scaly be sure to rub some of your natural oils into those spots with extra pressure. Don’t scratch, just give several good rubs. Rub the back of your hands on your belly and rub your hands together to spread the good bacteria around. Rub your tummy and legs and then your face. None of this is aggressive rubbing, just half a dozen firm swipes, and when you towel off keep the rubbing gentle.

A healthy skin microbiome is a good defense against skin problems.