Douche gel, which is more commonly called gel douche, is shower gel and has nothing to do with vaginal douching. In French, the word "douche" means shower, and "gel" has the same meaning as in English. Shower gels and body washes often say "gel douche" on the package below the English phrase. Body washes are essentially liquid soap designed for full-body bathing rather than just washing the hands. They typically come in squeeze or pump bottles and tubes, and are sometimes have a liquid, shampoo-like consistency rather than an actual gel.
One reason some people prefer to use shower gels is the wide variety of scents that are available. Douche gel varieties include some that are designed for use by everyone while others are specially scented to appeal to either men or women. Choosing one is generally as easy as purchasing one that has a pleasing scent.
Many companies offer a variety of shower gels and body washes, including those made for conditions such as sensitive or dry skin. A few specialty types of shower gels include those that are designed for aromatherapy or those that contain herbs and special ingredients that are supposed to be extra healthy for the skin. Some may have a stronger fragrance than others, which could interfere with the scent of a cologne or perfume that will be worn after the bath. Sets including body wash, a body spray, powders and other products are often available for those who enjoy a specific shower gel fragrance.
Using douche gel generally means it is not necessary to also use another type of soap. Many people replace their bar soap with shower gel when they start using it. Douche gel can be squeezed into the palm of the hand and rubbed over the skin, just like soap. Some bars of soap may actually harbor bacteria that can be transferred to the people using it. One benefit of using shower gel is that this transfer of germs is typically much less likely to happen.
It may also be possible to use less soap when using a body wash. Bar soaps generally melt at least a little when they get wet in a shower, even if they are not being used. Douche gel typically creates a rich lather with only a small dot of soap. A plastic bath sponge, also commonly called a bath puff, is usually ideal for use with douche gel. Unlike a wash cloth, the plastic mesh does not absorb the soap but adds air to create more lather with less product.