drybath gel dell challenge

DryBath Invented… Would You Shower Without Water?

A new innovation through the Dell Social Innovation Challenge is called DryBath, and it eliminates the need for a full shower to clean one’s person.

A shower without hot water, you say? That could only rival in pleasure a Diet Coke without caffeine, a nap on concrete or an aspirin without the pain relief. As a convenience, it’s not a very desirable one.

But that view of DryBath is an entirely first world one, where lack of hot water is a one-day convenience if the burner fizzles out, and much of the world does not have daily access to a pleasurable showering experience.

Enter DryBath, which is a bit akin to a hand sanitizer for your whole body. 22-year-old Ludwick Marishane is a student at the University of Cape Town and inventor of the clear gel formulation, which when applied to the body, eliminates the need for a full shower.

Reuters explains that the product differers from “anti-bacterial hand washes by eliminating the heavy alcohol smell,” and produces “an odorless, biodegradable cleansing film with moisturizers.” The site says that Marishane conceived the product as a teen living in a poor rural area.

A friend of the young inventor said that showering without indoor plumbing was a hassle (which sounds entirely legitimate), and lamented the difficulty of doing so. Marishane explains:

“He was lazy and he happened to say, ‘why doesn’t somebody invent something that you can just put on your skin and you don’t have to bathe.'”

Using Google and Wikipedia, Marishane spent six months doing his own research and development before obtaining a patent. DryBath is now commercially available, and the Dell honoree says the product could “go a long way in helping communities.”