NATALIE King, 49, a white teacher, lives in Dorset with her husband Jamie, 45, a plumber.
“Hearing the sound of water running upstairs, my heart sank.
Even though my plumber husband Jamie has built me a gorgeous bathroom, complete with soft lighting and a huge spa tub, I can never muster up much enthusiasm for my once-a-week bath.
Jamie always runs it for me and adds luxurious bubbles and scented candles, but even so, I just don’t enjoy it.
I know some people think it’s manky to only wash weekly, but I believe the body cleans itself and all these people who shower every day are bonkers.
Growing up, money was tight, and my mom Kim would give me a bath and wash my hair once a week.
If the bottle of Vosene shampoo had run out, she’d just use washing-up liquid.
My overwhelming memory of bathtime as a child was my mom battling to detangle my long, matted locks, which would be a mess because she never used conditioner. As an adult, I’d wash my hip-length hair just once a month, because shampooing, brushing and drying it was such an ordeal.
But it never smelt or looked greasy. In fact, my dark-brown hair was my crowning glory and I’d always get comments on how lovely and healthy-looking it was.
For as long as I can remember, I have had a bath weekly.
I’ll remove my make-up with a wipe at night, plus I’ll clean my armpits with a flannel if they get smelly. I use deodorant after my bath, and I find that’s enough to get by.
Jamie and I met at a pub in 2003, and we got married three years later.
He’s been an amazing stepdad to my son from a previous relationship, Liam, 27, who lives nearby.
At first, I think Jamie was a bit bemused when he found out about my washing routine.
He’s a keen once-a-day showerer, but he’s never tried to make me feel bad about my washing habits.
Liam also showers regularly and teases me a bit about my soap dodging – he’s the only reason I bother shaving my legs or armpits, as he’s horrified if he spots me looking hairy.
An added bonus of my lifestyle is how little I need to spend on beauty products. I never exercise and my job as a teacher is far from physical, so I don’t get sweaty.
If Jamie and I are intimate, then I’ll have an extra wash with a flannel, though the vagina is self-cleaning anyway!
Jamie has never said I smell. If anything, I’m told I smell great – I add scent beads to the laundry and wear fresh clothes for work every day.
People are startled when they hear that I only wash once a week, and some have asked why I don’t think I’m dirty. But I’ve never had any really bad comments.
In 2016, when I was 44, I lost my mom to lung cancer, aged 69. She was cared for at a hospice, and to help support them, I decided to shave off my long hair, which raised over £2,000.
Since then, I’ve kept my hair in a short bob and now wash it once a week, as it’s so much easier to dry and style.
I haven’t been surprised to hear that Hollywood stars such as Jake Gyllenhaal, Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis don’t shower regularly.
To me, it’s the rest of the world that’s mad! I’m with actress Kristen Bell, who said she’s a fan of ‘waiting for the stink’ before washing – you can tell if you smell bad, so why worry about washing every day if you don’t?
My skin looks very young and healthy, and I put this down to not stripping it of its natural oils too often.
I do wash my hands a lot, especially since the start of the pandemic, and when I compare the skin on my hands, it looks older and rougher than the rest of my body.
I know my views on washing are less than popular, but honestly, I couldn’t care less!”