- Bangalore is experiencing a water crisis, with the water supply becoming toxic and hard water being a major issue.
- Hard water in Bangalore has high levels of Total Dissolved Solids (TDS) and heavy metals, posing health hazards.
- Hard water negatively affects the skin, causing dryness, soap scum, itchiness, reduced skin elasticity, dry scalp, and aggravation of existing skin conditions.
- To mitigate the effects of hard water, options include using water softeners or RO systems, opting for gentle cleansers, avoiding hot water baths, using nutrient-rich skincare products, and moisturizing regularly.
- Hyaluronic acid serums can enhance the hydration provided by moisturizers.
Bangalore, once known for its many freshwater lakes, is now facing a water crisis. Apart from shortages, the city’s water supply is fast becoming too toxic for use. Groundwater is among the major sources of water in Bangalore. This hard water has TDS levels too high for safe use.
The seepage of pollutants into the groundwater has added to the woes of Bangaloreans. Landfills and waste dumps have worsened the situation. Despite the purification efforts by authorities, many homes still rely on hard water.
Bangalore’s groundwater has TDS levels exceeding 1500 mg per liter. These are dangerous levels that can cause various health issues. Heavy metals such as manganese, magnesium, and calcium in hard water pose many hazards.
Consumption of water with TDS levels above 300 PPM can damage the kidneys. Meanwhile, water with TDS levels of 1200 PPM and above can cause serious skin problems. Other pollutants that mix with the groundwater can lead to various other illnesses.
5 Ways Hard Water Of Bangalore Impacts Your Skin
The most noticeable effect of hard water on your body is dry skin. Hard water, due to its mineral content, allows very little moisture into your skin. It also reduces the effectiveness of any moisturizer or lotion you may apply.
Hard Water also causes a buildup of calcium bicarbonate. This is harmless by nature, but it tends to block your pores and cause flaking.
Soap Scum and Itchiness:
Hard water combines with soaps and shampoos to form a layer of soap scum. This layer results from the hard water’s inability to produce lather. Soap scum is hard to wash off and, if left to dry, can cause itchiness.
The chemicals of the soap also combine with the calcium carbonates in the water. This further strengthens the layer, causing dryness and other skin problems.
The heavy minerals in hard water break down the collagen in your skin. This causes wrinkles, sagging, and premature aging. The skin also becomes weaker and more sensitive.
The general skin dryness associated with hard water can make this problem worse.
Dry Scalp and Dandruff:
The effects of hard water on the scalp are almost immediate and adverse. Hard water causes the scalp to dry out. Any soap or regular shampoo you might use can form a thin layer as well. This irritates the skin and, in the long run, causes dandruff.
A dry scalp also leads to hair fall, thinning of hair, and other issues.
Aggravation of Existing Skin Conditions:
Skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis can become worse with the use of hard water. The mineral build-up can cause severe irritation in people with such conditions.
It is not the minerals in Bangalore’s water that are harmful but their concentration. It is also worth mentioning that hard water does cause any of these conditions. Although prolonged use of hard water is known to cause dermatitis.
What Can I Do to Avoid the Effects of Hard Water Of Bangalore?
- Use Water Softeners
Using a whole-home water softener is the most effective and permanent solution. Water Softeners or RO systems can turn hard water into soft water. Most systems can reduce the TDS level to as low as 110 PPM, which is ideal for drinking.
Water softeners for an entire home can be quite expensive. You can instead go for individual softeners for all regular-use taps and showers. Shower heads with softeners are also available at reasonable prices.
- Use a Gentle Cleanser instead of Soap.
Soap with hard water forms a layer of soap scum which can be hard to wash away. Cleansers ensure that your skin is cleaned without any residual substances.
You can also use cleansers with slight acidity. Cleansers with pH values close to your skin will help wash away mineral deposits. These cleaners will also give you a thorough wash without any side effects.
- Avoid Hot Water Baths at all Costs
Bangalore can get quite chilly during winter, and a hot water bath might seem refreshing. But hot baths with hard water can be damaging to your skin. Your skin dries faster with hot water and irritates.
Boiling water is a great way to kill germs, but warm hard water can cause more damage. Those of you with existing skin conditions can instead use distilled bottled water.
- Go for Nutrient Rich Products
Natural and countertop products rich in vitamins C and A can bless your skin. These rejuvenate the skin and ensure that it stays hydrated. Exfoliating face masks once a week or so can also be a good idea to maintain good skin.
Any residual layers of minerals and dead skin can be removed with exfoliation. Micro grain exfoliating agents are most effective in treating hard water damage.
- Moisturize Often
Bangalore weather and the water both contribute to skin dryness. It is a good idea to moisturize as often as possible. Hard water tends to stick to your skin long after a bath. Moisturizing immediately after a bath ensures that your skin gets hydrated.
Hyaluronic acid serums are a great option before applying moisturizers. These serums improve the hydration provided by moisturizers.