Bad Hygiene Habits You Didn’t Know You Had

By Nick Hadji 1 year ago

1. You clean your ears with Q tips

Image Source/ blogspotThis is such a common hygiene habit, LOTs of people stick an earbud in their ear to try and clean the wax. And people often think that by doing this they are cleaning their ears. Instead, it results in pushing some wax further down the ear along with fibres which can get stuck in the eardrum and impair your hearing. Plus, it can increase the production of ear wax.Original content sourced from

2. You keep touching your face

Image Source/ squishyfaceblogDid you realise that we touch our faces thousands of times a day? But this is transferring bacteria and germs from our hands to our faces which can then increase the risk of acne or breakouts. As well as this, resting your face in your hands is a habit that can also lead to breakout.

3. You use your phone whist sitting on the toilet

Image Source/ TwitterWe get it. Scrolling on our phone whilst sitting on the loo can feel like a nice use of relaxation time. But when you think about it it's kinda gross. The bacteria that we acquire from the toilet goes on to our hands, and then onto our phone. We then wash our hands...but not our phone and so essentially the dirt is still there.

4. You don't wash your hand enough

Image Source/HalsheyschoolsMost people wash their hands after the toilet (we hope). But it is also good to just wash them now and again randomly because our hands are used for everything, and they are constantly in contact with multiple surfaces - all of which can carry dirt. So, wash regularly to avoid getting sick and to stay clean.

5. You take very hot showers

Image Source/ tricityapplianceHot showers may FEEL good. But this hygiene habit is not actually good for you. The heat can dry your skin and can actually damage your skin. Plus, it will take the moisture from your skin too leaving you feeling dry afterwards. Try cooling down the shower instead when you wash.

6. You wash your hair too often

Image Source/ blogspotWashing your hair too often, for example every day, is way too much for your hair. Plus, the more you wash it the more regularly it needs to be washed because your hair adjusts. It will dry it out and strip your hair of the natural oils it produces. So, lessen the washes and you should notice an improvement in the health of your hair.

7. You sometimes sleep in your makeup

Image Source/ YouTubeWe've all been there. Rolling in from a night out...being so tired that you can't even grab a makeup wipe...or just totally forgetting. It happens. But it's not good to do often because the makeup can clog your pores and might even caught a breakout of acne.

8. You don't shower enough

Image Source/ NBCnewsShowering takes no time at all, so there's no reason that we can't be having one shower a day. It can be minutes. But it keeps us clean. If we don't shower enough, then all of the dirt/ sweat/ bacteria can build up on our bodied. And over time, poor hygiene might even lead to us getting sick more frequently.

9. You keep reusing your water bottle without washing

Image source/ PinterestIt seems a waste to wash a water bottle when the only thing that's been in it is water, right? But it's still important to make sure that you do wash it and don't just keep reusing it and reusing it without ever washing it in-between because it will still collect bacteria.

10. You don't wash your bra enough

Image Source/ PinterestYou don't need to wash your bra as often as knickers/ boxers - but you should still be washing it fairly frequently because it will be soaking up sweat and getting dirty even if it still looks clean. So, don't just wait until it smells - give it a wash.

11. You walk in public showers with bare feet

Image Source/ Time OutPublic showers are walked over by hundreds of not thousands of people per day before being cleaned. In bare feet. Combine it with the wet floor - it's a recipe for spreading germs. Sometimes it is inevitable, but it really is better to wear some kind of shower/waterproof shoes.

12. Your toothbrush is kept near your toilet

Image Source/ RedditYou wouldn't like to put your mouth near a toilet - so why are you keeping your toilet brush nearby? Think about when you flush the toilet, loads of particles are thrown up into the air. And, if your toothbrush is nearby then it's likely some of them are landing right on it. Which is then being used to clean your mouth.

13. You don't wash your sheets often enough

Image Source/ healthyfoodsmagSheet wash is an effort we admit. But it's got to be done. We spend almost half our time in bed. And you wouldn't re-wear the same clothes for a month. So, we shouldn't be sleeping in the same sheets, where we lie night after night and out sweat is absorbed.

14. You use strong soaps in intimate areas

Image source/ YouTubeNumber one rule - we shouldn't be putting soap... THERE. Because intimate areas are so sensitive, it is important to clean around the areas with soap specifically made for these areas. This is because Ph levels vary, and we do not want to upset the balance.

15. You leave tampons in too long

Image Source/ stayathomemumYou don't want to be changing your tampon too infrequently. The packet gives the guidelines for a reason, and that is because leaving them in for too long it said to be potentially detrimental to your health. And it is reported that in some rare but severe cases it can lead to Toxic Shock Syndrome.

16. You don't clean under your fingernails

Image Source/ scoopnestFingernails bear the brunt of a lot. We use out hands constantly, so it is so easy to collect first under them. And sometimes we cannot see it. It's good to clean them regularly so that we don't have any nasty stuff lurking under them that may be transferred to our mouths.

17. You don't clean your hair brush enough

Image Source/ allthingshairWe clean our hair all the time, yet when it comes to our hairbrush most of us neglect it. Yes, we might pull out the old hair. But you should properly clean it. Because the brush stores up excess product as well as your old skin cells and so by brushing your hair it can make it dirty.

18. You use mouthwash every time

Image Source/ sickchirpseMouthwash is great for cleaning our mouth and really getting rid of those germs in our mouth and fighting plaque. But it is very string, so using it every single time is a little bit too harsh for our mouths which can actually be quite sensitive. Using it every couple of times should be better.

19. You moisturize too much

Image Source/ chickadvisorIt's drilled into us how important it is to moisturise. And it is great for the skin. But it is actually thought that moisturising TOO much may not be so good because it could lead to clogged up pores which may actually lead to a breakout. A pea sized amount is the recommended amount.

20. You never clean your TV remote

Image Source/ homelyvilleIf we think about how often we use out TV remotes in comparison to how often (if ever) we clean's a scary thought. Something may look clean - but that definitely does not mean it is. We should clean it a lot more often that we realise. Plus, there may be multiple people using it.

21. You don't floss regularly

Image Source/ PinterestFlossing should be a part of our daily habits. But it rarely is. There's something about flossing which seems to feel like an excess chore or something we mean to do but never manage to keep up. However, it's so quick, so easy, and is so good for the health of our gums.

22. ...Or your phone

Image Source/ insidehookOur phones are constantly being touched, which means that they so much more germs and bacteria - yet we rarely even clean them. But by touching our phone means that even if we clean ourselves, the dame germs are going straight back to us again through our phones.

23. You leave your contact lenses in too long

Image Source/ veteransnewsreportLeaving your contact lenses in for too long is a bad hygiene habit to have. Plus, it's not kind for your eyes. Eyes are so sensitive, and it's important that they have a break and that the lens gets a clean in-between. And it may stop the feeling of dry eyes.

24. You share a razor/ don't change frequently

Image Source/ TAXIRazors collect hair and old skin, so they become pretty gross pretty soon - even using your own razor. But, when it comes to sharing, you are combining yours and that persons old skin and hair cells. It's much better to keep razors separate and not share.

25. You reuse towels a lot

Image Source/ ecotowelsTowels of course do not need to be changed every time. But they still need changing frequently. Otherwise, you are cleaning your clean body with something dirty. Yes, it may look clean, but after a few uses it is in need of a wash. And make sure it dries properly after you use it by hanging it up.

26. You don't wash your fruit and veg

Image Source/ esnoticiaFruit and vegetables are sprayed with pesticides and different chemicals. So, while you may just grab your fruit and eat it straight away, this is a bad hygiene habit. It is thought to be much better to wash your fruit and vegetables so that it is better for your health when you can consume it.

27. You continuously wear acrylics

Image Source/ theluxuryspotAcrylics may look great, but they can store a LOT of dirt. Getting acrylics continuously with no breaks and just infills is a bad hygiene habit. Not only is it terrible for the condition of your nails, but it also is a place which harbours bacteria because you can't properly wash and clean them.

28. You share your toothbrush

Image Source/ PinterestYou might be sharing a toothbrush with a loved one at some points for periods of time, thinking it's fine because nothing about your loved one could disgust you - even their mouth germs. But it's a bad hygiene habit because you are transferring huge amounts of germs and bacteria from one mouth to the next.

29. You sleep in underwear

Image source/ YouTubeThere's nothing wrong with sleeping in underwear occasionally. But it's a habit that is better not done every single night. It is actually better to take it off at night and let your body breathe, rather than have moisture trapped in continuously day and night.

30. You don't change underwear enough

Image Source/ etsy.comIf there's any hygiene practice that we all need to do, it is definitely changing underwear frequently. It's super important if you want to stay clean that you have clean underwear. Plus, not changing underwear is thought to lead to more serious things such as infection too.

31. You Don't Brush Your Teeth At All

Image Source / Ridgway DentalWe've mentioned how it's a very bad habit not to clean your teeth thoroughly, but if you're skipping entire teeth-brushing sessions altogether - such as not brushing your teeth before bed after a night out - this is one of the worst things you can do for your teeth.

32. Not Doing Your Laundry For Ages

Image Source / BuzzFeedIf your dirty clothes, towels and bedsheets are stuffed in your laundry basket for days and days - maybe even weeks - they're only festering in their dirty, bacteria-filled state. Yes, you're going to wash them anyway so you may wonder why it matters, but the longer you leave them, the more bacteria is multiplying.

33. Sharing Your Hairbrush Or Comb

Image Source / RedditWe've all been there - a friend asks to borrow your brush or comb because they've forgot to bring their own so you whip yours out of your bag. No biggie, right? But actually it's a very big biggie, because you're basically transferring and sharing all the built up dead skill cells, shedded hair and old hair product build-up.

34. Walking Barefoot Too Often

Image Source / MoveUThis is more a big deal in public spaces, of course, but it's also unhygienic if you're making a habit of it all the time around the house, for example - especially if your floor cleaning routine isn't the best and you're constantly transferring dirt and bacteria wherever you walk.

35. Bad Sanitary Towel Hygiene

Image Source / CosmopolitanYou may think that if you don't have a particularly heavy flow, you can keep the same sanitary pad in all day long if it doesn't feel like it needs changing. But if you leave your sanitary pad for too long, you're more likely to develop a host of icky things in your downstairs region, like UTI's. And, left too long, could cause toxic shock syndrome.

36. Neglecting Your Eyelash Extensions

Image Source / The MirrorEyelash extensions are handy for their reusability, and a lot of people will store them on the side to wear more than once. But are you actually caring for them properly? If you're not, you could risk problems after glue-to-eye contact, including vision impairment or even inflammation of the cornea.

37. Reusing Your Kitchen Sponge Too Many Times

Image Source / ScienceEspecially in today's climate when many people are trying to help the environment, you may have got into the habit of reusing your kitchen sponge for cleaning as often as possible. But sponges are great at attracting and storing germs. You could be risking spreading more bacteria through reusing it, rather than cleaning.

38. Leaving Your Dishes To Soak In The Sink

Image Source / ReviewedSometimes this feels necessary when you have a particularly stubborn stain on a pan or dish. But the kitchen sink is a nasty area of attracting germs and bacteria - even more so than your toilet bowl, studies have shown - so if you're soaking dirty items for a long time, it's only building more bacteria in your sink.

39. Following The Five Second Rule

Image Source / RedditHow many of us have dropped something on the floor and still eaten it? Because the five second rules says you'll be fine, right? Wrong! The moment your food hits the floor, is highly likely bacteria is transferred immediately - studies show that 99% of bacteria transfers instantly.

40. Neglecting Your Office Cleaning

Image Source / Principle Cleaning Solutions - WordPress.comWhether you have a home office or you're working in an office that has a particularly lax cleaning routine, it's likely your office is harbouring a lot more bacteria than you might think. Workplaces are exposed to so much bacteria, such as skin, nose and ears. And obviously you have everything within the office that's being touched on a daily basis, too.

41. Not Drying Yourself Properly With A Towel

Image Source / The ListAfter you get out of the shower or bath, do you do a quick rub down with your towel and then quickly get dressed? If you're not towelling yourself properly, you could be risking the spread of bacteria and fungal spores - particularly if you're neglecting areas like the groin and armpit.

42. You Never Clean Your Keyboard

Image Source / T3You have a very good cleaning routine for your home, but do you ever actually remember to clean your laptop keyboard or computer keyboard? For a lot of people, it might not factor into the chore list. But think about how much bacteria is on there from your fingers being all over it day in and day out!

43. You're Reusing Floss

Image Source / QuoraWe don't mean saving the same piece of floss to use on your teeth everyday, but if you're flossing your teeth and find you've run out with only a few teeth left to do, you might just rewrap and quickly use the piece you've already used to save you getting a fresh piece of floss from the container. Well, it's not the most sanitary thing, is it!

44. You're Not Washing Your Hand Towels Often Enough

 Image Source / TripAdvisorA lot of people neglect washing hand towels too often because the main towels can be the focus. Because hand towels get used as a second thought compared to main towels that dry you're entire body, you could be leaving hand towels longer than you should, letting them hang there and fester.

45. You Wash Off Your Makeup But You Don't Remove Eye Makeup Properly

Image Source / RedditEven through best efforts of washing your face, eye makeup is a whole other ball game. It often needs a separate product to specifically remove mascara and eyeliner. So if you're washing your face in general but failing to remove your eye makeup properly, you could still be putting your eyes at risk of all that bacteria.

46. You're Not Washing Your Makeup Sponges Or Brushes Often Enough

Image Source / AllAboutEve - AllAboutEveWith such busy lifestyles, it's easy to put the focus on applying makeup and then washing it off properly after a long day. But what about all the little tools you use to apply your makeup in the first place? When was the last time you washed your foundation sponge or brushes? You should aim to wash once a week.

47. You're Not Washing Your Hair At All

Image Source / PinterestWhile washing your hair every single day can be a hygiene problem, the opposite can also be an issue. If you're failing to wash your hair at all, or leaving it to wash say once a week, you're still risking the build up of bacteria and dirt. It might start to smell and your hair follicles may also clog up. A good routine is washing your hair every couple of days.

48. You Never Clean Your Nail Clippers

Image Source / QuoraIf you go out of your way to keep your nails trimmed and clean, that's great - but what about the clippers themselves? If you're never cleaning them, they're basically getting clogged up with the dirt or bacteria from nails that get onto them each time you're using them.

49. You're Not Washing Your Towelling Robe Often Enough

Image Source / Breathe LifestyleA lot of people have towelling robes, which are dressing gowns that double as a towel so you can wrap it around you after a shower and help you to get dry more quickly. But because the towelling robe feels more like an item of clothing than a towel, you may not be washing it as often as you should (as often as you would a dirty towel!).

50. You Never Replace Your Shower Or Bath Sponge

Image Source / TripAdvisorBecause you're using your cleaning sponge, cloth or loofah in the shower, you may think it automatically cleans itself when you use it with products and water. But it needs cleaning and changing regularly because of the build up of bacteria, yeast or even mould it can get on it.

51. Coughing without putting your hand or elbow over your mouth

Image Source/ NOAA Ocean ExploreAfter the coronavirus outbreak, I think we should all now be more aware of how quickly and widely germs can spread. It comes as no surprise to hear that, no matter where you are, you should cover your mouth with your hand or elbow when you cough. Then you should wash your hands!

52. You open packages with your teeth

Image Source/ RedditDespite how tempting it may be, resist the impulse to use your teeth to open a package or a bottle. A tooth may break, chip, or become loose by doing this. If you've got a broken tooth, it can lead way to an infection too. Also, you don't know what bacteria is being harvested on that packaging!

53. Openly sneezing

Image Source/ RedditIf you sneeze out in the open without using a tissue, handkerchief or even your hand to cover it, then you've got a weird perception of how the air and germs work. In actuality, it's been proven that a sneeze can travel to distances up to 8 metres... I bet you didn't know that.

54. You don't drink enough water throughout the day

Image Source/ RedditCleaning your mouth of microorganisms and food particles with water is an excellent idea. However, consuming sugary drinks won't do anything but raise your risk of developing cavities if you don't enjoy drinking water. Instead, make an effort to train yourself to drink water. Your mouth will appreciate it!

55. An untidy desk

Image Source/ RedditWhile it might sound like a norm, and not something that should be considered unsanitary, you'd be surprised. Any kind of area that doesn't get cleaned often is a breeding ground for bacteria, and your messy desk is no different. While it might be tempting to neglect it, always consider the worst.

56. You brush your teeth too soon after a meal

Image Source/ Stornoway GazelleAfter eating, brushing your teeth could offer you fresh breath but also harm your tooth enamel. After consuming some foods with a high acid content, your teeth are more susceptible. Delay brushing for at least 30 minutes. If you need to, think about gargling with water or chewing gum.

57. Your bins are constantly overflowing

Image Source/ RedditIf you take on thing away from this... empty your bins more often!! Of course, that's where the bacteria is, as you have used unsanitary products sat in there for long periods of time. Whether it be your kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom bin, force yourself to empty it more.

58. You eat too much sugar

Image Source/ Diabetes UKIndulging your sweet tooth, while tasty, can be detrimental to your oral health. Plaque can develop on your teeth when sugar combines with the bacteria in your saliva, which isn't a good luck. You thus increase your chance of developing cavities and dental decay.

59. Leaving dirty dishes in the sink

Image Source/ RedditWhile we've already covered why it is bad practice to leave your dishes to soak in a sink (even when we're feeling lazy), even just leaving them there until you get round to them can be a bad decision, especially if it's a communal sink like at the workplace.

60. You defrost your meat on the countertop

Image Source/ RedditAlthough we're guilty of this, the kitchen counter isn't the ideal location to thaw out frozen items. This is because bacteria grows more quickly at room temperature, which also promotes the growth of countless numbers of dangerous pests. Instead, to lower your risk of food poisoning, defrost meats overnight in the refrigerator.

61. Eating at your desk

Image Source/ RedditIf you decide to take lunch at your desk rather than the staff room because of how swamped with work you are, consider the negatives. While it's obviously very important to take breaks away from the desk, it's also important to keep a tidy, clean workspace.

62. You leave your dirty dish rags lying around

Image Source/ RedditWe all have been known to leave used and moist dishcloths and kitchen towels hanging around the sink. This is a fantastic place for germs to grow. Make sure to wash the cloth after each use and hang it up to dry properly rather than leaving it in a tangled mess on the sink or countertop.

63. Biting your nails

Image Source/ RedditBiting your nails can lead to all sorts of problems. Not only are you transferring the bacteria from your nails to your mouth (ew), you're also making your nails and hands susceptible to infections, which can obviously cause further problems. Remember to try not to bite them!

64. You rinse your meat in the sink

Image Source/ The New DailyWater splashes everywhere when you wash meat in the sink and these water droplets could contaminate your plate or utensils. The same is true when preparing meat on countertops without sanitising them. Cooking meat is the greatest way to get rid of the bad germs in it!

65. Not washing your bedsheets regularly

Image Source/ RedditSome people dread doing laundry and it's not just about clothing as bed linens left unwashed for weeks turn into a breeding ground for germs, fungus, dust mites, and more. What's more, bacteria multiplies rapidly which means that you're literally lying in it.

66. You don't rinse your utensils

Image Source/ RedditWhile your cutlery and dishes may appear clean, they might not be. Bacteria can be left behind by nocturnal bug crawlies, especially if they're left uncovered on the kitchen countertop. Always rinse dishes and other items before using them, then wipe them down with a fresh microfiber cloth.

67. Walking barefoot in a public shower

Image Source/ KidspotBecause sweat, hair, and urine can produce bacteria, fungus, and mildew on shower floors, it makes it an excellent ground for bacteria. Consider wearing flip-flops and water shoes to avoid problems like ringworm, athlete's foot, and nail fungus, which can be contracted easily.

68. You don't properly clean your cutting board

Image Source/ RedditMake sure to thoroughly clean your cutting board as food particles and bacteria can get trapped in the board's crevices. If the cutting board came into contact with raw meat or seafood, wash with hot water and soap and remember... never use the same cutting board to chop vegetables or cut fruits when chopping raw meat.

69. You don't brush your teeth properly

Image Source/ RedditAccording to a research published by the American Dental Association, only 66% of males clean their teeth twice a day, compared to 86% of women. One of the most prevalent bad male hygiene practises, according to reports, is not brushing their teeth thoroughly, notably not flossing and not brushing their tongues.

70. Your food isn't sealed properly

Image Source/ RedditOpen cans and containers should never be kept in the refrigerator. You run the risk of cross-contamination by leaving Tupperware inside your fridge opened. Your fridge contains a variety of microorganisms that can get into it too. Use containers with secure lids to prevent air from entering.

71. You clean out your ears too often

Image Source/ RedditAttempting to remove too much earwax means the wax is simply being pushed down and impacted farther into the ear canal, leading to even more problems. Anything that can fit within the ear canal and eardrum poses a severe risk of damaging them permanently or even temporarily.

72. You don't clean your sinks well enough

Image Source/ RedditIf your sink isn't cleaned regularly, food particles and bacteria could still be there and cause infections like salmonella and E. coli. To clean the basin, drain, faucets, tap area, and the area around the rim of the sink, use mild, non-toxic soap, warm water, and a soft cloth.

73. Washing your hair everyday

Image Source/ RedditThe primary function of shampoo is to remove impurities and extra oil from your hair while maintaining the natural oils that your scalp secretes, which are vital for healthy, lustrous hair. Soaking away all of those natural hair-boosters too frequently will dry up your scalp, deprive your hair of key oils, and ultimately result in dry, lacklustre hair.

74. Your pets are allowed in the kitchen

Image Source/ RedditWe all adore our pets, but allowing them access to the kitchen can be dangerous for their health and ours. Because their faeces include bacteria and parasites, pets are particularly prone to spreading germs and pathogens after a stroll or simply passing through a crowded area.

75. You keep your toothbrush near your toilet

Image Source/ RedditYou put yourself at risk of cross-contamination if your toothbrush is close to the toilet. When you flush the toilet, an invisible cloud of small particles can spread. Also, toothbrushes should be kept upright in a space where they may fully dry off in between uses.

76. Your hot showers are way too long

Image Source/ RedditHot showers can have a lot of unfavourable side effects, such as drying out the skin and removing vital natural oils. Due to the dilation of peripheral blood vessels brought on by the high heat, blood pressure may even decrease. Try to take brief showers.

77. Microwaving leftovers in the same container

Image Source/ RedditReheating leftovers in the microwave three, four, or five times and then simply eating from the same container each time is dangerous. Put the leftovers in several single-serve containers before splitting them up, or microwave your portion in a different bowl. This inhibits the development of all types of bacteria.

78. You're overusing mouthwash

Image Source/ RedditSome people find mouthwash to be overly harsh. Mouthwashes with alcohol in them frequently dry up the mouth and undo a lot of the work being done by the toothpaste you've just used. Instead, it is preferable to use mouthwash sparingly over the course of the week.

79. You forget to throw out old food

Image Source/ RedditDon't scrape the mould off the bread, you're not doing anything. Food poisoning or a severe stomach ache can frequently be brought on by poor or expired foods in your fridge and cupboards. Regularly clean out your food storages so that you know you're not harvesting bacteria in there.

80. You crunch on ice

Image Source/ RedditIf you like to bite down on pens or chew on ice, you run the risk of breaking a tooth. These cracks may cause sensitivity to extremes of cold or heat. Not only that, but crunching ice can possibly raise your risk for tooth decay over time by wearing down your enamel.