Hard Water Vs. Soft Water: What’s The Difference? 1

Water may be the other name of life, but choosing the right kind of water plays a vital role in determining the quality of that life.

As many of you may already know, there are two types of water – classified as hard and soft. But what do they really mean? Which one is the better choice for everyday life?

Let’s find answers to all those questions and more by comparing hard water vs soft water!

What is Hard Water?

The water filled with minerals like Calcium and Magnesium is called hard water. It gains such a high amount of minerals by passing through vessels or pipes which were treated with chemicals like chalk, gypsum and limestone. Remnants of these substances like carbonates and sulfates then make the original water hard.

Advantages of Hard Water

Daily Quotient Of Essential Minerals

Since hard water is already filled with so many minerals, drinking them on a daily basis can give your diet a boost of nutrition!

The United States National Research Council further assured of its health benefits. They concluded that hard water might be good choice for serving a good amount of calcium and magnesium every day.

Possible Cardiovascular Benefits

Although there is no hard evidence for this, some studies observed a subtle connection between drinking hard water every day and declining cardiovascular diseases in men.

By including up to 170 mg of calcium carbonate in every liter, one such experiment proved that hard water can provide the heart with better health. However, World Health Organization reviewed the data and said the conclusion might be far-fetched.

Disadvantages of Hard Water

Hair And Skin Issues

Applying hard water on hair or skin regularly can make both of them dry. In some extreme cases, it can also lead to a skin disease called eczema in children. That is why, you always need to make sure that your household water supplies are not using hard water in the bathroom, the kitchen sink and similar places.

Limestone Buildups

Another possible side-effect of using hard water can be the limescale buildups inside pipes. It slowly accumulates inside the supply pipes over time and prevents regular water flow when the buildup becomes too large. In order to prevent this, you should clean up the pipes every 18 months or so.

What is Soft Water?

Soft water is the natural water that you see on the surface of the ground. It comes on earth from rainfall and the river basins surrounded by hard rocks lacking calcium. As a result, this kind of water doesn’t have many minerals. You can only find some ions of calcium and magnesium in soft water.

Advantages of Soft Water

Good Cleaning Agent

Soft water is ideal for cleaning with soap. Because of its low calcium content, soft water can lather very well with soap and it does not form any scum while washing. The lack of minerals also means no scale buildup in pipes and appliances. As a result, you can use soft water in all kinds of household cleaning tasks.

Better Skin and Hair

Your skin and hair both will thank you for using soft water on them. This kind of water can make them as soft as it self! The reason behind this is its commendable strength against stickiness and dryness caused by rough weather. So if your skin or hair feels too dry and lackluster, switch to soft water for rejuvenating baths!

Disadvantages of Soft Water

Health Risks

Even though ‘soft’ water sounds like a good drinking option, it is actually still harmful to ingest for some people. If your diet does not contain enough minerals like calcium and magnesium, the ions of soft water can cause problems.

Its high sodium content can increase the blood pressure of HBP patients and lead to heart issues. Besides, soft water can also affect blood cells and the process of oxygen traveling throughout your body.

Lead Contamination

Soft water can absorb lead from older water pipes easily. So if you are not inclined to cleaning up the pipes on a regular basis, you and everyone else living with you can suffer from lead poisoning. You can prevent this by treating the pipes properly and blocking the discharge of lead in them.

Comparing Soft Water Vs Hard Water


Since hard water is full of healthy minerals like calcium and magnesium, it is mostly used for drinking and daily dietary habits.

On the other hand, soft water can easily lather with soap and doesn’t cause much of limestone buildup inside pipes. As a result, soft water is mostly used for cleaning purposes. Besides, it can increase the lifespan of household appliances like washing machine, water heater and dishwasher.

Mineral Content

In general, the water with higher mineral proportions is hard water and the one with a lower amount of minerals is soft water. To be more accurate, the mathematical threshold of hardness is set at 60 mg/l calcium carbonate in the United States of America and 50 mg/l in the United Kingdom.


Soft water tends to taste salty because of high sodium concentration. So you may not find any pleasure in drinking it. On the other hand, hard water may not taste delicious but it certainly scores better than soft water in this aspect. Besides, its healthy contents make hard water the better choice for drinking.

Effects On Skin

For daily beauty routines and relaxing shower times, you can rely on soft water without any worry. This water makes the skin soft and truly moisturized. The other alternative of hard water can make your skin and scalp dry. It can even cause eczema or worsen its condition in children.

Bottom Line – Which One is Better?

In the end, there is no clear winner for hard water vs soft water. The former works great for drinking purposes while the latter performs better for cleaning.

So you need to make sure that they are assigned for their individual roles. Maintaining this balance can lead to a safe, healthy, and fulfilling life!

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