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The Earth is 71 percent water—most of it saline, and thus unusable without expensive desalinization technology. In some places around the world, water is abundant, while severely lacking in others, especially in California, which is currently undergoing one of the longest droughts in recorded history. The state government ordered a reduction in water use earlier this year, urging people to save water any way they can, which can prove problematic on the personal hygiene front.

However, technology is never in a drought—there are always people innovating and finding new ways to make any aspect of a person’s life more convenient. One solution includes completely eliminating the need to take a shower. Chemical engineer and MIT graduate Dave Whitlock has advocated for spraying live bacteria on your skin. “I have not taken a shower in over 12 years,” he said. “No one did clinical trials on people taking showers every day, so what’s the basis for assuming that that is a healthy practice?” he added, questioning the daily routine of billions of people worldwide.

Whitlock founded the company AOBiome, which introduces natural ways to remain clean and healthy. “We’ve confused clean with sterile,” said Jasmina Aganovic, the General Manager of Consumer Products at AOBiome. “We need to reconnect with our environment. We’ve taken the dirt out of our lives. We don’t spend as much time outdoors as we used to, even little children,” she added.

The Mother Dirt line of products, including AO+ Mist, were released in July of this year. The technology that has enabled Whitlock to remain shower-free for 12 years is a spray that one can apply to the skin that is composed of live-cultured ammonia oxidizing bacteria (AOB). According to the company, this certain type of bacteria defies what people think when they hear the word bacteria.

“Similarly to how probiotics are ‘good bacteria’ for the stomach, this AOB does good for the skin. Now, we understand that the notion of a ‘harmless bacteria’ might be a bit tough to wrap your head around, but follow us here for a minute: AOB are found everywhere in nature and have never been implicated in any human illness over the many decades that they have been researched,” the company claims.

Aganovic also said that their products can reduce dependence on other toiletries and beauty products included in one’s daily routine, such as deodorant and moisturizers. “Our users are able to reduce their dependence on conventional products,” Aganovic said.  For those who are a bit squeamish about giving up on showering, there is also a Mother Dirt shampoo and cleanser that don’t contain bacteria, but won’t interfere with the AO Mist+ product.

“At birth, our mothers passed on their genes, bacteria and their immune system, things we need for health, and we have for too long stripped our skin of this critical diversity though modern chemistry and products,” said James Heywood, Chairman of AOBiome. “It is with great pride that we release Mother Dirt, the first product line ever developed not to remove, but to enable a healthy biome on your skin.”

AOBiome is also looking into treating skin conditions such as acne, rosacea and eczema. Clinical trials for all three are starting later this year and continuing into early 2016. While the vast majority of people won’t completely eschew the daily routine of showering, Whitlock is optimistic that people will use Mother Dirt products. “I would like a billion people a day to use this,” he said. Our advice? Market to teenage boys, ASAP!

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