Is Hard Water Bad For Your Skin?- Know The Truth Here

Only water can rejuvenate your skin. Water is a natural moisturizer that is packed with minerals. Excessive levels of essential minerals can cause water to become hard and cause your skin to look dull.

Hard water contains minerals that make it difficult to rinse the soap from the surface of the skin, causing it to feel dry and irritated. Skin problems such as psoriasis and eczema can be more severe for those with sensitive skin.

There are many negative effects that hard water can have on your skin. The purpose of this article is to discuss the side effects of hard water on the skin and how to deal with the problem.

How Hard water affects your skin in a variety of ways?

Those who live in areas with hard water may already know most of these skin issues, as they use hard water and it has some negative effects on the skin, including:

  • Intense Dryness– In most cases, bathing in hard water disrupts the moisture levels of your skin. The hard water in showers reduces the effectiveness of moisturizers and lotions while also drying out the skin.
  • Consequently, the skin may become irritated and dry, making it difficult to moisturize properly. Hard water makes direct contact with your skin, causing it to dry out and leave behind deposits made up primarily of calcium bicarbonate.
  • Calcium that remains on your skin disrupts the production of the natural oils that regulate your skin’s moisture. Dry and itchy skin results when this delicate balance is disturbed. Further irritation is caused by the minerals left behind, resulting in acne.
  • The hard water in your shower also dries out your skin when it reacts with soap. Upon contact with hard water minerals, soap causes a reaction leading to calcium and magnesium carboxylate precipitates, also known as soap scum.
  • The result is that it is difficult to fully clean soap residue off the skin, which leaves the skin raw and irritated long after you have gotten out of the shower.
  • Scalp irritation– It is difficult to thoroughly wash away all the traces of shampoo when using hard water, which dries out the scalp. Showering with hard water also leaves a film of soap on the hair, causing it to become dry and irritated.
  • The presence of hard water worsens conditions such as dandruff as it dries out the scalp. 
  • Poor Lather– For soap to lather properly, it needs water that does not contain minerals. When hard water is mixed with soap, it produces soap scum, rather than the rich lather you would expect.
  • The use of more soap is also common among people with hard water. This, in turn, leaves more soap on your skin, making it more difficult to remove.
  • Affects healthy skin cells– This is yet another negative effect of hard water. Regularly using hard water damages the healthy cells of the skin.
  • There are minerals such as zinc, lead, calcium, and magnesium present in hard water that damage elastin and collagen. When exposed to harmful ultraviolet rays, your skin will also be more susceptible to sun damage.
  • Acne prone– Everybody has dealt with acne at some point in their lives. Due to the presence of undissolved minerals in water, breakouts are quite common.
  • Water with a high mineral content dries out your skin, thereby depriving it of its natural oils. This, in turn, causes skin irritation and frequent breaks outs of acne.
  • Leaves marks on your skin– When you have spot-prone skin despite eating healthy and using the best products, the water quality is to blame.
  • Water with high mineral content and product residue often clog the pores of your skin, resulting in many minerals and chemicals entering the skin. The skin becomes discolored and you may also experience breakouts.

Also Read: How To Exfoliate Skin at Home {Expert Guide}

How Can You Protect Your Skin From Hard Water?

  • The easiest solution is to use a water softener, as it helps the soap to be rinsed off easily. Your skin will be free of soap residue this way.
  • Skin-friendly cleansers should be used instead of soap. 
  • Consider taking a quick shower, avoiding extreme temperature changes and keeping the temperature midway between warm and cold.
  • Keep your face clean by using warm water and avoiding frequent washing.
  • Rather than rubbing yourself vigorously after washing, dab yourself gently with a towel.
  • It is best to apply a moisturizing body lotion while the skin is still moist. This will trap the natural moisture and prevent the skin from drying out.
  • Fragrance-free body washes and moisturisers are recommended for those with sensitive or dry skin.

What Is The Best Way To Test Water Hardness With Soap?

Use a transparent and clear bottle filled with no less than 350 ml of water. Add 10-12 drops of liquid soap (you could also use handwash soap) to it and fill it with water. Shake the bottle vigorously after closing it.

A small number of bubbles indicates that the water is hard. The process can be repeated by adding one or two more soap drops (up to 50) and shaking the bottle.

Hard water is evident if the bubbles don’t increase. A cloudy appearance to the water can be an indication of hard water as well. 


Now that you understand hard water has a wide range of damaging effects on your skin and hair, you are better equipped to deal with it.

There are two ways to deal with this problem: you can use different types of lotions and new hair products to mask the issue or you can treat it at its source.

A great way to eliminate hard water problems at home is to install the right water softener. A clean, refreshed feeling after a shower is much more desired than split, dry skin and irritating dandruff.

Starting to soften your water will help you have beautiful, moisturized skin, and shiny hair.

However, you can remedy this problem by adding the right features to your home. You can get softer water throughout your house by using water softening and water filtration devices.  

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