I didn’t see it coming, nor did I want to see it, but my niece did, and she was grossed out by a woman parading around the locker room in her birthday suit. Of course, you can’t wear a towel when you’re dressing and undressing, but the rest of the time (doing your makeup and hair, walking to and from the restroom, shower, and sauna), remember: locker room towels are there for a reason, so use them.
Which leads us to our first secret of locker-room etiquette:
· Cover up. I’m thrilled that your body is fit as a fiddle, but not everyone wants to see it. Show off by the pool in your bathing suit.
· Avoid the locker room stare. If you wear a towel at the appropriate times, you won’t have to worry about drawing looks. But if others are into self-display, just ignore them—it’s uncool to stare.
· Keep conversation to a minimum. Most people are in the locker room to dress or undress, not to visit, so greet your friends, but make your interactions brief.
· Mind the no-phones policy. Most gyms have rules for using cell phones, and the locker room is one place usually on the no-phone list. There’s nothing wrong with texting, of course, but remember to keep your phone in silent mode.
· Shoes, please. Floors in locker rooms are often slippery and grimy. Wear shower shoes/flip-flops to keep from falling and falling prey to infections.
· Keep common areas tidy. After you use a hair dryer, put it back where you found it. Remove any personal items, such as hairbrushes, combs, and—worse—hair!
· Lock it up. Be sure to keep your locker locked. I can think of northing worse than not having undergarments to put on after a shower. Be safe, not sorry.
· Don’t hog space. It’s okay to spread out on a bench or in front of a mirror if no one else is around; otherwise, leave room for others.
· Use the towel-disposal bins. Don’t be a slob. On your way out, drop all of your used towels in a bin so others don’t have to do it for you.