Wonderful Bathing Hacks From The Early 1900's
Do not bathe when tired.
Avoid bathing within two hours after a meal.
Avoid bathing when the body is cooling after perspiration.
In fatigue, a very hot bath lasting only half a minute is good.
Avoid chilling the body by sitting or standing undressed on the
banks or in boats after having been in the water.
Avoid remaining too long in the water; leave the water immediately
there is the slightest feeling of chilliness.
The vigorous and strong may bathe early in the morning on
an empty stomach.
Any excess in the use of the Russian or Turkish bath is to be
avoided, especially where there is a tendency to heart disease.
Aromatic odors are to a degree disinfectant, and all agreeable
perfumes have a more or less soothing effect upon the nervous system.
The use of all baths favors a free action of the skin, and as a matter
of course when the skin is absolutely clean the complexion is
The use of aromatic waters, oils, and perfumes in the bath is
desirable from a sanitary point of view as well as a matter of physical
Take a daily veater bath, not only for cleanliness, but for skin
gymnastics. A cold bath is better for this purpose than a hot bath.
A short hot followed by a short cold bath is still better.
For a weak person when bathing, especially in summer, a gill of
ammonia in a small tub of water, or some rock salt, is a wonderful
invigorator, almost as good as a sea bath.
The young and those who are weak had better bathe two or
three hours after a meal; the best time for such is from two to three
hours after breakfast.
Those who are subject to attacks of giddiness or faintness, and
those who suffer from palpitation and other sense of discomfort at the
heart, should not bathe without first consulting their medical adviser.
A neutral bath, beginning at 96 or 98 degrees, dropping not
more than 5 degrees, and continued fifteen minutes or more, is an
excellent means of resting the nerves.
The tepid bath is the best adapted to the purposes of cleanliness
and healthful exercise. To delicate females and young children,
it is of primary importance.
Where soiled clothes have to be kept in the bathroom, a small
barrel painted inside and out, with holes in the sides for ventilation,
is better than a basket.
Anyone troubled with pimples should avoid bathing in cold
water. Take plenty of hot baths, and give the eruptions a chance to
come out on the body, if they must come out at all. Wash the face
in hot water, wiping it very gently.
Avoid bathing altogether in the open air, if, after having been
a short time in the water, it causes a sense of chilliness, with numbness
of the hands and feet. Bathe when the body is warm, provided
no time is lost in getting into the water.
Leave the water immediately if the slightest feeling of chilliness
is observed. Persons whose hands and feet have a feeling of numbness
and cold, after being in the water a short time, should not bathe
in the open air.
An Epsom salts bath is said to be good for women who are
nervous and have kidney troubles. Dissolve two pounds of Epsom
salts in a bath tub of water, and stay in the bath fifteen or twenty
minutes. The water should be warm, but not hot. Take a good rest
after the bath. This bath is also considered a beautifier.
Nothing can be more absurd than the common practice of
mothers and nurses in washing children, no matter how sickly or
unwell, with cold water, under the idea of bracing up the constitution;
whereas the use of tepid water alone is not only the most agreeable,
but the most proper fluid to excite the energies of the system in
The sanitary value of baths is acknowledged, so that here it is
only necessary to remind the reader that different forms of the bath
produce different effects, the cold bath being tonic, and requiring
sufficient vigor to insure reaction from the first shock it occasions,
the relaxing effect of the warm bath making it necessary to guard
against taking cold after it.
The tepid bath is attended with several advantages; the surface
of the skin is by it freed from that scaly matter, which always collects
more or less on the healthiest person; the pores of the skin thus
being free, the natural perspiration is promoted, the limbs are rendered
supple, and any stiffness, which may have been produced by
exertion or fatigue, is removed. Such immersion has been found to
allay thirst—a proof that water is absorbed and enters the body
through the skin.
To wash the face thoroughly, dip it down into a basin of tepid
water, then soap the hands a little and rub all over the skin of the
face with a gentle friction. Dip the face in water a second time and
dry with a thick, soft towel, rubbing gently until the skin glows.
If fleshworms disfigure the nose, rub this part especially thoroughly,
and when all is dry put a little vaseline on the hand and go all over
the face, rubbing it well into the pores. Wipe again and dust over
with baby powder. Thus treated, no face will ever chap in the
Baths, to achieve much in the way of flesh reduction, must
be persisted in and taken very frequently, often too frequently for
the general health. The Turkish and Roman baths are what are
recommended. The Turkish bath should be given, so as to make the
perspiration very free. This is what is supposed to carry off the fat.
In my opinion, while the baths will keep down the flesh and will
reduce it somewhat, they cannot accomplish much unless taken
too often and continued too long to be compatible with health. To
keep the skin healthy and to remove the outer layers of the skin,
soak in a hot bath, or take a cabinet bath or Turkish bath once a
week; but these taken only once a week will do little in the way of
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