If you follow my blog you’ll know I’ve had a Harvey Water Softener now since November 2021 and I’m loving it.
I have not looked back.
It’s been such a dream come true, something I’ve longed to do for years and I am now never going back to hard water.
So what have I learnt in those nine months?
What have I learnt from having a water softener?
I think I’ve been using mine now for long enough to give it a good test and I honestly can’t speak more highly of my experience. Here’s why I love it.
- My skin is less dry – Now this is a confusing one, because I’m going through Topical Steroid Withdrawal and that can often look very dry and flake off too. However I no longer moisturise that much. If you lived with me you’d notice my skin still often looks very dry, but it doesn’t FEEL dry. It’s not tight, sore and itchy, like it used to get. I remember that feeling after a shower or bath when I just had eczema, before TSW and I would literally have to rush for the emollient because I could feel myself drying up. I don’t feel like that now. I still moisturise some parts of my body, but not all over and I don’t have to run to the tub to slather it on. I apply little and sparingly, where my skin needs support. And now I only use natural healing balms and creams, I don’t use paraffin based emollients any more. More on that in a future blog.
- My skin has healed – Again I can’t put this down purely to having a water softener because I’m one of those people who throws everything at healing. I’m eating a very clean diet, taking herbal tinctures, working on my mental health, to name just a few. But a quick look back at where my skin was before (pictured above) I started using softened water and the difference is remarkable. I’ve shared a picture of me this week below so you can see the difference. Topical Steroid Withdrawal heals in phases though so I may have more healing crises, but for now my skin continues to strengthen and improve week by week. I strongly believe, from my extensive research and now my own experience that having a water softener will help support my skin to continue to heal and stay strong and healthy after TSW is over. Who knows when that will be!
- Cleaning the house is so much quicker and easier – Seriously I hardly clean the bathroom and kitchen now. That sounds bad, I do clean, but it’s so easy. It takes minimal time and I never get those hard to remove limescale stains on the bath, shower screen and sinks. I use an ecloth and that removes everything.
- No limescale – The kettle is pristine! Having lived in a hard water area all my life this dream will never grow old. I keep looking in the kettle to check and it’s shiny and new. No more horrible fizzing toxic descaler. Just a clean healthy kettle.
- I love the whole process – I love the Harvey app which tells me when to reorder salt. The salt isn’t pricey and certainly a monthly cost I’m willing to pay for the health of my skin. The clever i-lid on the water softener monitors the salt level and alerts me on my phone when I need to replace a new salt slab. the come in large blocks that are curved and fit into the unit, and can take 4 at a time so you’re not having to replace the salt all the time. I reckon I’m changing the salt every 2-3 months. I don’t see this as a chore or a job, it’s a pleasure to have found something that I can do for my skin that I know isn’t harming me in any way, but instead only doing good.
- I’m saving money – I use less shampoo, less soap and less detergent so I’m saving money all round here. I’m also switching to all natural cleaning products which can cost a little more initially, but I think it’s worth it for the future of our planet.
Proof that hard water can cause eczema
In a recent study, The Association between hard water and eczema in adults, the objective was to examine the association between domestic hard water supply and eczema prevalence and incidence in middle-aged adults and the contextual effect in eczema outcomes by postcodes in adults in the UK.
Conclusion: Increasing levels of domestic hard water, as measured by CaCO3 concentrations, were associated with an increased prevalence of eczema in adults but not increased incidence. Ongoing efforts to reduce hard water exposure may have a beneficial effect in reducing the burden of eczema in adults. Further research is needed to explore area level factors that may lead to eczema.
Thanks to Nic at Topical Debate for sharing this.
What does this mean? Increased prevalence but NOT increased evidence?
- Prevalence means it happens a lot, the fact or condition of being prevalent; commonness. So there is more eczema in adults associated with living in a hard water area.
- Incidence means – the occurrence, rate, or frequency of a disease, crime, or other undesirable thing: “an increased incidence of cancer”. And it says not increased incidence…
So it’s more common in adults but not occurring more? This makes no sense to me… or am I just being thick? I can’t read the full report because once again it’s hidden behind a pay wall. How are we, the patients, ever meant to find the information we need when it’s protected and hidden from us all the time? I think this information should be in the common domain, I bet no one every pays for these reports so it’s a nonsense.
From my own experience, just a few days holiday in a soft water area and my skin would improve remarkably. So I’m going with my own lived experience. Probably just as scientific and reliable as this probably very costly report into something we already know.
How do I find out more about Harvey Water Softeners?
I did a lot of research into the different options on the market and these guys are by far the best.
In my opinion, from the reviews I read and the swiftness of their dealings with me.
Some of the brands didn’t even get back to my enquiries.
There are also loads of payment options, from installments to hiring.
Check out Harvey Water Softeners here.
And if you do buy one, tell them you read about it here first!
Do you have a water softener?
I’d love to hear from itchy eczema people who have a water softener. Do you think it helps your skin? Please let me know. Or do you live in a soft water area? What brand do you have? How long have you had it for? Tell me everything!