How to Use Shower Gel and Oil: types of Shampoo (AVOID Doing This!)

Do you use the shower every day? If yes, you may also be a frequent user of shower oils and shower gels. Most oils and gels have the instructions on their bottle. The general idea is to dab them onto your hands or a cloth, lather, hold & rinse with shower water. Even then, many consumers tend to use both, overuse or misuse the products. Let’s discuss how you can use them properly.

Shower gels have been on the market for a very long time. Sometimes they remain in the bathroom closet due to habitual use & you add shower oils to the bathing routine.

Shower oils are new to the market- meant to replace gels- but they have become an add-on to the showering routine. Let’s take a look at the difference between the two.

Shower Oil vs Shower Gel (or shampoo), What is the Difference?

Soap has been around for a long time. In fact, shower gels have been around since the 19th century. Soaps have been made from the fat of animals but over time more chemicals have been added.

Shower Gels (or shampoo) are often a mix of chemical elements. They can be bought with or without natural ingredients. Since they are bottled, shower gels are easy to carry & more economical in terms of use. Shower Gels undergo a lot of testing to make them safe for human use. Even then, they may contain chemicals that may harm or pollute the water upon excessive use.

In recent years there was a trend toward more natural ingredients. Shower oils have an organic base & contain many natural ingredients. The most common shower Oil bases include cocoa butter, flower extracts, flower waxes & vegetable oils. Second, they often do not come in the typical plastic packaging & they are more eco-friendly. Third, they are generally very powerful in locking moisture i.e. shower oils can help remove any need for after-shower body lotions.

Do Gels & Oils Expire?

Gels and Oils have limited shelf life i.e. both can expire. Usually, it is not unsafe to use these products after expiry, but they do lack the potency to serve the intended purpose.

Shower gels have a chemical base & that can last from 12 to 36 months without any use. In some cases, the gel may dry up & feel like crushed soap that needs vigorous efforts to produce the lather. It may also become very difficult to wash off the hair & body. The date is often printed on the bottle.

Shower oils have natural extracts & that tend to last for 12 months from the date of packaging. Usually, these oils may lose their fragrance over time & fail to enrich the body with oils & vibrancy. If your hair feels dry & your body remains ashy, it may be time to replace the shower Oil.

You have to decide, which products can be left on the shelf unattended & which must be consumed to avoid expiry & wastage of money.

What are shower gels used for?

The use of both products may be the same, with minor differences. You have to make sure that your body & hair are wet & saturated with enough water. Then, put some gel on your palms & rub it till it dissolves into the water. Thereafter, rub your hands over your hair or body & generate sufficient lather. If it is a shampoo gel, massage the scalp to create the lather. Next, rinse your body & hair until all the lather has been washed off. Get out of the shower, dry yourself & apply some after-shower lotion that restores the oil balance of the body.

How to use shower gel

If you are using shower gel, take a water shower to wet your body & hair. Shake the bottle before you use it.

There are different types of shower gel. For example, there are shower gels for different hairstyles or parts of the body. Pick the right one for your needs.

You can pour the gel on your hands, or a washing cloth, or directly apply it to any part of the body. Rub it till the oil generates some lather. Usually, the lather is less than a shower gel, but it is enough to clean the body. Wait a minute or two, before washing off all the lather. You do not need any lotion after shower oil.

The shower gel can be quite slippery if it is on the shower floor. For this reason, you should be careful when you use this as you can slip and slide over the soap.

If the bottle is almost empty, you can turn it upside down to get the last parts out of it. Some people add water as well to get it completely empty. This can affect the effectiveness of the shower oil though.

After your shower, you can consider using a lotion as the shower gel can dry out your hands and face.

How to use shower oil

Shower oils are used in a similar way as shower gels. Sometimes shower oils are solid instead of liquid. If that is the case, you will have to make the shower gel wet and remove some soap. A washing cloth is a great way to do this. Make sure to keep the solid shower gel clean by storing it in a dry place. If the shower oil remains wet, it can break down more easily and won’t last as long.

Shower oils often have a strong smell that makes them relaxing to use. You can mix different shower oils to get a better experience. You can even use a scrub before you start to complete the experience!

Make sure to remove all the lather with enough water. You can use a wash cloth or a stream of water to do this. If you notice that some part is still not clean, you can reapply shower oil to get it cleaned further. Rinse and repeat until you feel clean enough to face the rest of your day.

Shower oils also have an expiration date that you should check. Given that they are made out of more natural materials, they are more prone to break down faster.

Shower gel versus shower oil: What works Best & Why?

You can use either or both products on a given day. These are over-the-counter products that do not require a strict prescription, but the overuse of any product can be counter-productive. If you use too much soap it can affect your natural protection against smells and dirt.

The utility of the product depends on your body type, hair type & personal preference.

Shower gels are useful if you have returned from a highly polluting or dusty environment. Maybe the city air has a lot of dirt & dust, or you were at a game or a construction site. This leaves a lot of foul elements on your body, that may require thorough cleaning. While a shower gel could also do the trick, it may require larger quantities during the shower & end up being uneconomical.

If you spend a lot of time in an indoor environment or shower multiple times a day, moderate quantities of shower gel may suit you.

A shower oil will limit the effect of hand washes & face-washes as well as body lotions. A good quality shower oil may also give your body a fragrance that does not need perfume or deodorant.

In rare cases, you may want to wash away stubborn dirt with a shower gel & follow it up with the use of shower oil. You may feel that a lotion is more suited than a shower oil, but it all boils down to personal preferences. Everyone is unique and you can use both shower oil and shower gel and see what works for you.


Shower oils are positioned as replacements to shower gels, but both products remain popular. Consumers have an added choice to switch between them & see which product serves their needs.