For any of you who know me from outside of my Associated Content persona, you are probably already aware that I’ve recently moved. Again! For those of you who follow my musings on AC, you may have noticed that I’ve been recently traveling all over the country. Regardless of where you fall in this sphere; even if you’ve never read my writing before at all, you all have invariably been in or at least seen a bathroom shower. I love our new house by the way; it’s a full on house with four walls in a subdued neighborhood just outside of Los Angeles proper (“the Valley” as it’s affectionately known; even though Google Maps comes at me with a Los Angeles city address when you punch up my whereabouts) and I have no real complaints about our setup at all.
However this shower, as virtually every other shower I’ve ever been in has this same problem. It’s a problem inherently built into the system and it’s a problem with nary a solution. It’s the problem of the soap dish. You see the soap dish in this shower comes into direct contact with the spray of the showerhead. While I take quick showers, it suddenly dawned on me that all the while as my wife is showering, the spray from her turn is wearing away the quality of my soap. This is directly caused by the location of the soap dish!
While some may offer that the soap dishes placement mid-tub, just above the rim of the bath is a historical anomaly and has to do with a time in history when people took baths primarily, others could contend that the soap dishes placement directly in the stream of the showerhead was an item implicitly built into homes in conjunction with the whims of companies making the soap. If there is always strain on their products then people will use more of them more often. After all, it’s not the fault of Coast where you put your soap. But people invariably put their soap in the direct path of the shower stream. Even now! As I write this and my dear wife showers, my soap is being subtly worn away, worn away, worn away.
One solution to this problem would be to get one of those collapsible travel soap dishes. The problem with that, though, is that you’re opening and closing the soap dish as you’re showering undoubtedly; so you are always subjecting your soap to water when the water is on. Moreover, the travel soap dish will collect water and everybody knows what standing water does to soap!
Another choice would be to just put your soap on the far corners of the shower, out of the reach of the spray. That would work except as space becomes more and more an issue, showers are built with less and less free space leaving the far corners of the shower less a place to leave something the size of the modern bar of soap.
As I was considering this, it suddenly occurred to me what people can do. It’s sort of a no-brainer actually. This solution is something I’ve come across in my travels in newer constructions. When you’re building your shower in your dream home, consider putting the soap dish opposite the shower head and at chest level. This leaves the spray a minimal problem and keeps the soap on hand only when you need it.
Even that solution though takes out the inherent risks of steam and mist and errant spray and wear and tear. So the only real solution to this problem in any meaningful way is for the soap user to transfer their bar of soap from a cool, dry, place (like the butter dish in your fridge; or even better, your freezer!) to the shower every time. While I don’t know if we’re prepared to do that yet, as a society, soap wear continues to be a problem with no end in sight.