I have had a water softener now for just over three months, it was installed back in November last year so I thought it was about time I shared how I was getting on. How is my skin? is it helping? What do I love most about my water softener?
Before we go any further, I must be up front and tell you I was given this water softener. I hope I can repay this incredible generosity by sharing the joy of owning one, having soft water and helping my skin to heal day by day.
For more on why I decided to get one, read Can a water softener help eczema skin?
Firstly let’s look at what they are and how they work…
How do water softeners work?
A water softener works by removing the magnesium and calcium present in your water supply through a process of ion exchange, turning it from hard water to softened water. Unlike hard water, softened water does not damage your home’s piping, or cause a build up of scale in your appliances; reducing their effectiveness and lifespan.
By softening your water, you can protect your home from harmful build up while also eliminating limescale (which is only present with hard water) and improve your family’s skin and hair, too.
Harvey™ Water Softeners is the UK’s number one manufacturer. It delivers beautifully softened water by removing hardness minerals from your mains water supply. With hard water these minerals can be seen as a white residue on your surfaces, sinks, taps, kettle and more.
To find out more, read How Water Softeners Work on the Harvey website. It’s all about resin beads and positive and negative charge. All very clever and sciencey.
Why did I choose to get a water softener?
I’ve always wanted one, and not for the main reasons like less limescale and savings on bills, longer lasting appliances, less residue and less damage to pipes. I wanted one purely for my skin, and I’ve wanted one for years. The other obvious benefits are just an added bonus.
I’ve been doing topical steroid withdrawal now for three years and that’s been really hard on my skin. I know that I will never use topical steroid medication for my skin again, I believe we need to find the triggers, work out what causes eczema and support it as best we can, not suppress it with drugs.
So one thing I felt could really help was soft water. I always noticed an improvement when staying in soft water areas for even a short space of time. So I decided it was time to invest in my skin and do everything I could to help it strengthen, regenerate and heal.
What’s improved while using my water softener?
Since November time has flown, but now it’s been three months I thought I’d do a quick check in to let you know how it’s helped. The Pros and Cons. There really aren’t many cons. You do have to buy salt and replace it but for me the salt has lasted really well. I probably have to put more salt in every 3-4 months, depending on how often I use it. So here are my top 20 reasons to get a Harvey Water Softener.
- Less dryness – My skin is less dry. It’s still dry, it will always be dry while I am going through topical steroid withdrawal but I’ve noticed that I can use less moisturiser and my skin needs less. Now that I’m not using huge tubs of paraffin based emollients that I used to get on prescription, I am reliant on more expensive natural alternatives and these are working well for me but I’m buying them less frequently as I heal.
- Less tightness – The other day I realised that my face and skin does not immediately tighten when I get out of the bath. I only moisturise the back so my legs, arm crease, lower arms, wrists, hands and face now. And I leave all these alone as much as I can. I don’t have to rush to moisturise after bathing now, but I do still put on some emollient because I feel it helps me get through the night.
- My hands are so much better – They are still not healed. Typically hands are one of the last areas to heal through TSW but they are markedly better, the skin is stronger, less swollen, inflamed and red and less itchy. I do wash my hands quite a lot as I am always worried about infections and the soft water feels like silk on my skin.
- Soap lasts FOREVER – I am still using the same bar of soap I opened when I first got the water softener installed. It has hardly shrunk in size at all. Perhaps this is an advert for the soap also, but it and the water are like silk on my hands and I need hardly any soap to get a lather and feel clean.
- Shampoo lasts AGES too – I’ve noticed also that I need a tiny bit of shampoo so it’s lasting AGES. I try to only wash my hair twice a week anyway as my scalp is healing.
- My scalp is less itchy – I’m sure the soft water has helped my scalp too. No tightness after washing my hair. I used to saw at my head with a comb after washing. I don’t even feel the need to do that any more.
- Softer skin – Again, if you saw my skin you would see that is is different as it goes through TSW, but it feels softer and stronger. I can’t really scientifically prove this, but anecdotally, I’m doing really well and huge areas of my skin need no moisturiser at all.
- Less cleaning – As you know, I love a bath Showers are still too triggering so I bath a few times a week. I use an ecloth to wipe the bath down but there is never any scum now. It’s so clean. I’m experimenting with natural cleaners like vinegar and lemon juice and it works a treat – where it struggled with limescale. I’m all for less cleaning, I hate cleaning! hahah.
- Limescale is disappearing – There were stubborn bits of limescale in the bathroom and they are slowly going as I work on them each time I clean. No new limescale is appearing and I’m looking forward to when it’s all gone!
- Easy to use – One thing I was really worried about was forgetting to put in new salt, but you don’t need to fret about that at all. There is a free app for Harvey Water Softeners that tells you how much salt is left. Mine takes 4 curved salt blocks and I only just reordered them. When your water softener is installed you get enough salt to last a few months to get you started. The softener has a clever cover called an ilid, which communicates with the app via Wifi and lets you know when salt needs replacing.
- Easy to replace salt – It takes just a few moments to replace the salt and it’s really simple and slick to remove the ilid cover to get access.
- It looks smart – Every time I go into the cupboard under the sink for washing powder or soap nuts I see my water softener. It’s so cool.
- Great installation – Mine had to be retro fitted into the floor and hole cut into the kitchen unit. The guys who fit the units are so flexible and worked out a way to fit mine because nothing is ever simple with my house. I was really impressed with the no nonsense way they worked together to get it installed swiftly and they
- Impressive After Sales – I’ve had a few calls to check how I’m getting on with my water softener and I’ve been impressed with all the staff. They are efficient, friendly and helpful.
- Easy maintenance – Once it’s installed you really don’t need to do anything except replace the salt. I reckon it’s costing me about £18 every 3-4 months. There is also a filter cartridge that should be replaced every 12 months. These range from £55 to £73. There may be some servicing that’s needed but I’d say if there is it will be minimal.
- Great reviews – Before buying anything I ask for recommendations and check reviews on TrustPilot. I wasn’t disappointed. They get very good reviews
- Trusted supplier – From my internet research Harvey Water Softeners are the the No. 1 in the industry in the UK. I’ve just gone to leave my own review. Spread the love.
- My coffee tastes so good – Not sure if I’m imagining this but my morning coffee and herbal teas taste amazing.
- I’m drinking the soft water – It’s a myth that you can’t drink the water from a water softener. They did fit me a little tap that gives hard water for drinking should I want it, but I’ve been drinking the soft water too, it tastes lovely and is safe to drink.
- Great payment options – You can pay outright, monthly or take advantage of the 3 month free trial or you can even rent a water softener.
This is Fran’s story, she has eczema
Getting a water softener for Fran helped her eczema heal.
You can find loads of other case studies on YouTube and on their website.
I’m hoping to do a video story for my journey when I’ve had a little longer.
How do I get a Harvey Water Softener?
- They are offering a 3 months free trial
- No obligation and with a 100% money back guarantee.
- They also offer many other payment plans including rental, monthly instalments and loans.
- If you decide to get one, please tell them I sent you! Quote What Allergy when you order.
You may also find the following useful
- Natural treatments for allergic asthma
- 30 ways to stay cool for itchy skin
- Topical Steroid Withdrawal – Frequently asked questions
- Patch testing for allergy and eczema triggers
Image: Harvey Water Softeners