How to Shower
I am not going to tell you what soap to use where. That's up to you. I will give you tips on how to use the least amount of hot water possible. Since showering takes up about 20 percent of indoor water use in the average home, this could save your water heater serious effort and you serious money.
First things first: install a low-flow showerhead. Don't be afraid. They have significantly improved since the old days when they emitted a light mist--great for plants, horrible for rinsing conditioner out of your hair. The new ones really work, so you have no excuse now. I've even included a page on installing one, so you really have no excuse now. You may even get one free from your water department.
If you don't know if you already have a low-flow showerhead, try this neat party trick. Hold a half-gallon container to catch all the water from the showerhead. Turn the faucet on full blast. If the container takes less than 10 seconds to fill get out the wrench. It's time to replace the showerhead.
Your best choice in low-flow shower heads is one with a temporary shut-off button that allows you to turn off the water while lathering up without having to readjust the temperature when you turn the water back on.
Which reminds me--turn off the water while shampooing or soaping up. Use a brush or washcloth to get rid of stubborn dirt quickly.
Don't shave in the shower; use the sink. Run the water only as needed or partially fill the basin with warm water. Shave after your shower when your skin is already soft, warm and wet.
If you have to adjust the water temperature mid-shower, lower the hot first if it's too hot. Lower the cold first if it's too cold.
Another water-saving tip you probably already guessed: take shorter showers. Don't relax. Don't meditate. Soap up, rinse and get out. Cut your shower in half and you cut out half the hot water you would have used, no matter what type of showerhead you have.
Think about this. If you take a 5-minute shower with a 2.4 gallon per minute (low-flow) showerhead instead of a 10-minute shower with a 3.5 to 6.0 GPM (standard) showerhead, you'll save 23-48 gallons of water. Quick, how much does that add up to a year? 365 days X 23 gallons = 8395 gallons; 365 X 48 = 17,520 gallons. Now multiply by the number of people in the house. Finally, pick your jaw up off the floor and start taking shorter, low-flow showers.
If you can't get a low-flow showerhead for some reason, install a flow restrictor, which is a plastic washer with one or more holes. You're going to get a less powerful stream and a less satisfying experience than you would with a low-flow showerhead, but it will save hot water. Flow restrictors may be offered free by your water department.