Is A Shower Water Filter The Secret To Better Hair?

Your “everything shower” could be sabotaging your beauty routine.
A woman with curly hair stretches post shower, wrapped in a yellow towel with a smile on her face.Getty/Tatiana Maksimova

On vacation, we often blame salt water and swimming pools for unruly hair and dry skin; but another culprit could be the water coming out of the shower.

“It’s full of minerals that wreak havoc on hair – particularly calcium and magnesium, which can build up and dull the hair, weighing curls down, and coppers can give a greenish tinge to lighter coloured hair,” Hairstylist and O&M Ambassador Pauline McCabe tells marie claire Australia.

Turns out water isn’t just H2O, and McCabe says this isn’t just an issue for European travellers where 85 percent of the water falls into this category. She explains that in Australia, states like Brisbane and Adelaide are known for their hard water, while Sydney and Melbourne have “soft” water.

“If you’re wondering why your hair and skin goes from fab to drab travelling interstate the answer is your shower water,” she explains.

McCabe says one tip when travelling is to give your hair a final rinse with bottled water after showering, but if you live in a state with hardware, this is an expensive and environmentally unfriendly habit. This is why we’ve seen beauty experts and fitness influencers like Kayla Itsines touting the benefits of shower water filters from brands like Well Verti to counteract the negative effects.

The question is whether they are necessary, particularly if you’re not living La Dolce Vita? Understanding hard and soft water will help you make that decision.

The Difference Between Hard Water and Soft Water

While water’s properties aren’t usually top of our minds, understanding the difference between hard and soft water and their influence on hair and skin is crucial if you’re wondering why your 45-minute “everything shower” leaves your hair and skin worse for wear.

It all starts with “hard” and “soft” water. Hard water is high in minerals like calcium and magnesium; these minerals accumulate on your scalp and hair, coating it with a film that makes your strands dull, dry, and brittle. At the same time, it clogs the pores on your scalp and skin, leading to dryness and congestion. And if you’re prone to dry skin on your body or skin conditions like eczema, it’s not ideal for you either.

Soft water, on the other hand, has a low concentration of minerals. While this might sound ideal, soft water is also soft on shampoo, conditioner, natural oils, and surfactants on your skin from cleansing products. This can mean a film is left behind post-rinse, and your hair and skin are left feeling oily, slick and greasy.

Why haven’t you noticed this, you ask?

The debate between the citizens of Sydney (a soft water city) and Adelaide (a hard water city) highlights how we overlook the impacts of water on our hair when it’s what we use every day. South Australians find their hair greasy and limp when they visit Sydney, Sydneysiders complain of dry skin and frizzy hair in Adelaide. Both cities think the other is exaggerating, but the reality is that you become accustomed to your local water’s effects.

Essentially, it’s better, the devil, you know, and you could probably benefit from a shower filter.

The Well Verti Shower water filter easily attaches to any shower set up, shown here in gold it is also available in black, white and silver.
(Credit: Well Verti )

So, What’s The Best Shower Water Filter?

So, if snapping up a shower water filter is the easiest way to dial up your beauty routine and ensure that the shower gives you “everything”, what’s your best option?

We particularly love Well Verti as a case in point. The Well Verti Wellness Pod Shower Filter ($129.99) treats hard water and soft water, removing 99% of chlorine and heavy metals and then remineralizing it to ensure it’s not too soft to get your conditioner and cleanser off your face. It uses Swiss minerals to do this, because “you’re worth it.”

The Well Verti Wellness Pod also addresses one of the glaring problems we’ve noted with shower water filters: aesthetics. While many shower water filters protrude awkwardly from your shower, ruining your well-curated bathroom setup, the Well Verti Wellness Pod is made of sleek brushed sustainable metal and comes in gold, silver and the thrillingly titled volcanic black an “glacier white” to ensure aesthetically seamless bathroom interiors.

Essentially, it’s water that’s “just right” for hitting your skin and hair goals.  

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