Saturday, February 19

Drowning in Choice

Google Gives MILLIONS of Results
In my commute to Fort Worth Alliance Airport, I concluded the best approach to personal hygene was to take a shower at their excellent facilities upon my arrival and not bother with any shower before leaving home. For the sake of work storage convenience, I used a liquid "body wash" and elected to select "Dial" as a choice. I think I was influenced by the ad campaign I remembered from my childhood "Aren't you glad you use Dial, don't you wish everyone did?"

Anyway, it was the same price at the grocery store as pretty much every other brand. It worked well. I didn't need to bother with separate soap and shampoo, and I didn't need to worry about a bar of solid soap getting things all messed up in the locker or turning to goo in a soap holder.

The last day of my commute to Alliance, it ran out, which was quite convenient from a timing standpoint. Since then, it's been pretty cold and my new, short commute has made an alternate strategy attractive; namely taking a shower before leaving home and then doing light cleanup upon arrival at work. However, this IS North Texas and the frosty days of winter are coming to an end. On Friday, our high temperature was 82F. When it gets toasty here, it'll be 80F on the morning ride in, which will make it a lot more pleasant to simply return to the "take the morning shower at work" strategy. So, deciding to get more scientific about a choice, I checked the Internet. Google returned four million image results. Some of the photos looked spicier than others, but I concluded an attractive photo and an attractive product might well not coincide. So I checked reviews. "Epinions" has proved helpful sometimes in the past, but this time it gave me LOTS of choices. What's more, the choices varied dramatically in price. Why, I wondered, would Alberto Culver body wash be WORTH $99.99 at Amazon?

Either Men are Stinkier - or Maybe They're Not. Either Way, Not a Lot of Difference in Product Count
So, after experiencing total confusion, I found that my eldest daughter was off to the grocery store. I told her to get me the "best stuff I can use at work. I had the Dial last time, Epinions has 275 variants on Dial alone, there MUST be something better than what I got last time, but let's not spend a fortune to make a marketing guy rich." She nodded knowingly, and departed. The photo below shows what she brought back. Actually, it's exactly the same stuff I got the first time. While it worked great, with 275 choices, it seems unlikely that we picked the absolute best stuff the first time out. Still, there's something to be said for picking something that worked before. At least the cap didn't fatigue and fall off before the contents were used up and I never noticed any ill effects. Wise daughter...

Wait, Out of Millions of Choices, You Pick the Exact Same Stuff?


adventure! said...

I'm a big fan of Dr. Bronners Liquid Soap, but maybe it's the latent hippie in me. ;-)
Don't know of the availability in your area, though.

It's a great multi-purpose soap, and my "go to" for bike touring. And if you're bored, you can spend hours reading the stuff on the bottle!

limom said...

Stick with what works I say.
Then again if you want women chasing you around like those Hai Karate commercials, some Axe seems to be the newest thing.

Velouria said...

There are actually not as many choices as you think. Most bodywashes are soap free (yes, free of a cleansing agent) and are designed to soften and sent your skin after you already use a basic soap. If you look at the bottles, most of them will say things like "soap free," "not a substitute for soap," and the like. The ones that do contain a cleansing agent are maybe 20% of what's out there tops, and usually the less expensive ones are the ones with the most cleansing power. In short, Dial seems like a good choice to me for your purpose.

Steve A said...

While it doesn't use the word "soap" anywhere, the Dial mostly has the same ingredients as Dial liquid soap and uses the word "clean" five times.

Looking at some other Dial choices, Limon wasn't kidding, though I can't see what benefit a "pheromone-infused" product would accrue to my fellow coworkers.

I also notice that the ones targeted at men mostly look like they're packaged in leftover Pennzoil bottles, while the ones for women are all sweet and flowery.

Justin said...

You should try Dr. Bronners soap - liquid, all natural, and just great stuff. I use it exclusively and have for years.

Steve A said...

Justin, you know a local source for Bronner's?

Dog Friendly Dallas said...

Steve, you can get Bronner's at Target, Whole Foods, Sprouts, and I think I've seen it at Walgreen's too. I love it as a body soap, but I'm guessing you have hard water where you live, and I find that with hard water it makes my hair feel gummy and sticky, and doesn't seem to rinse out of hair very well. If your work has a water softener system, it might be ok.

Justin said...

I buy mine @ Central Market, but is available all over as above. I recommend Eucalyptus or Peppermint. Both are very refreshing.

I don't use mine for shampoo, but I have in the past.

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