Healthier showering

If you’ve noticed nausea, headaches or a feeling of low energy after a shower, consider your vinyl shower curtain as the possible culprit!

Vinyl or PVC shower curtains contain several toxic chemicals, the worst being a softener called polyvinyl chloride. During even the shortest of showers, it’s inevitable that you will inhale these chemicals which are made worse by heat activation especially during the first month of use.

As a 2008 LA Times article points out, “The curtains tested contained high concentrations of chemicals that are linked to liver damage as well as damage to the central nervous, respiratory and reproductive systems,” said researchers for the Virginia-based Center for Health, Environment & Justice.” (Tami Abdollah | Times Staff Writer, 2008)

Cinyl or PVC shower curtains are also collectors of mold spores and bacteria.

Consider replacing your vinyl curtain with a cloth one. Or two! A heavy cotton outer curtain and an inner sheer one such as a polyester chiffon lighter weight fabric that will dry quickly.

For further reading on this subject matter please see the following references below.


  1. Martin, D. S. (2010, May 31). 5 toxics that are everywhere: Protect yourself. Retrieved September 10, 2017, from
  2. Stephen Lester, Michael Schade, Caitlin Weigand. Volatile vinyl the new shower curtain’s chemical smell(PDF). Center for Health, Environment and Justice’s (CHEJ). 2008 June.
  3. Tami Abdollah | Times Staff Writer. (2008, June 13). That ‘new shower curtain smell’? It’s toxic, study says. Retrieved September 10, 2017, from
  4. White, L. B., M.D. (2009, Aug). PLASTICS: WHAT’S DANGEROUS, WHAT’S NOT.Mother Earth News, , 70-73. Retrieved from