While most of us take something as simple as showering for granted, others in the third world live without this luxury due to the dearth of available running water. If only there was a way to adequately shower without expending this valuable resource!. Thanks to South African innovator Ludwick Marishane, the paradigm has shifted in the way we look at showering.

Inspired by his lazy friend who saw too much effort required to shower in his rural village of South Africa, Marishane took it upon himself to develop an agent that would replace the need for showering with running water. His patented invention, called “DryBath, helped him win the 2011 Global Student Entrepreneur of the Year, Award, and is an odorless and biodegradable gel applied to the skin that creates soap suds. In this way, nations are able to reduce water waste that result from showering.

As the saying goes, “Necessity is the mother of invention” and none is more apropos than the example of DryBath. Rural South Africa, with its lack of running water nationwide, facilitated the idea of showering without water. And while DryBath will help similar nations preserve the precious resource of water, it has also revolutionized the way we think about showering here in first world nations. The savings associated with using less water with showering is staggering. An average shower uses 2.5 gallons of water per minute, which multiplied by the average family unit of four people and 15 minutes per shower is 150 gallons of water per household per day. Multiply that number, which is for showers only, by the number of households in a nation and you can start to see the irony in the size of the spring on the Poland Spring water bottle.

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DryBath, if it is safe, which is a pretty large assumption we are making here, would be a huge win for sustainability, and would completely alter the way we maintain our personal hygiene. While not a necessity to adopt such technology, utilizing such an innovation would help to preserve this natural resource, and would be another way where we can both live green, and be green.

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