In Korean drama, the Korean scrub baths are often portrayed as a relaxing activity for both Korean men and women; it is also a good way for daughters to bond with their mums, aunts, female friends and for sons to bond with their fathers and etc. However, the scrub bath towel can be so damaging that dermatologists in Korea have even started a campaign to ban it. Is the Korean scrub really that bad?
According to the doctors, it is actually good to have scrub bath occasionally as it promotes blood circulation and helps maintain your skin velvety and feeling refreshed. People with oily skin can benefit from scrub bath, as it also reduces acne. Doctor Kim Yong Jiu, director of Dermatology department in Yonsei University College of Medicine, said, “Without scrub bath, you might accumulate oil on your skin overtime, dead skin will then accumulate because they can’t be washed off easily, acne will then start to developed.”
If you use soap, the bubbles will get clog the pores, thereby preventing your skin from breathing. For best results, one should soak in warm water for about 30 minutes before scrubbing the skin. One should never scrub their skin too hard, as there is a tendency for the epidermis to be scrubbed out, thereby damaging the skin. Mudong Wonderful World Skin Hospital Director Lee Hao Nan said, “If you scrub your skin with too much force or have it done frequently, it will cause the thinning of the skin and making it vulnerable to dangers of bacteria, carcinogenic and allergic substances, which trigger skin problems.” The white stuff during your rub bath is the epidermis and if it is scrubbed out too much, your skin will be damaged.
If you have skin inflammation, dry or sensitive skin, it is not advisable to have scrub bath. Elderly people and those who are suffering from diabetes, hypertension, lymphoma and nephritis are also not advisable to have scrub bath, as their skin will develop eczema easily.
Whether one should go for a scrub bath or not is not really important. Samsung Hospital of Jiangbei Dermatology Professor Lee Jia Rong said, “Keratinocytes will naturally fall off to create new skin; even if a person do not have scrub bath, he or she will not look much different from those who did.”