If you’ve lived in the area for a while, you have probably spent time descaling your kettle, your shower head and even your shower head.

You have probably suspected as much, but figures show that south Herts has some of the hardest water across the whole of the UK.

St Albans and Watford both rank in the top 10 for the hardest water, according to the latest data compiled by Harvey Water Softeners.

The 'hardest water' is based on the latest milligrams of calcium carbonate per litre level (mg/l) for each area - the metric used to measure the severity of hard water.

St Albans has 342mg/l, ranking second only being Slough, which has 368 mg/l.

Watford ranks seventh at 320 mg/l while Hemel Hempstead comes 13th at 304mg/l.

This compares to Edinburgh (23 mg/l) Plymouth (25 mg/l), Glasgow (28 mg/l) and Manchester (30 mg/l)

You might ask what exactly makes our region prone to having the hardest water.

It's because of the close proximity to chalky rock. When water percolates through this or limestone, it increases its calcium carbonate levels, meaning the majority of the UK’s hard water areas can be found in the south and eastern areas of the country.

How does the water quality affect your day-to-day life?

At home, you may notice white build up on your shower, taps and kettle. The lower your hardness levels, the less you’ll suffer from limescale build up - and the less time you’ll have to spend cleaning. Water softeners can help reduce the amount of limescale in your home.

St Albans & Harpenden Review:

Limescale in a kettle

Hard water is associated with dull looking hair. That means the higher your water hardness levels, the less likely you are to be able to achieve glossy locks, no matter what products you use.

The quality of your water can affect the lifespan and effectiveness of your appliances. If you have particularly hard water, the higher levels of minerals in that water have the potential of lining your pipes and the inner workings of your appliances and harming them as a result.

Having some of the hardest water in the UK can have its detriments, but it can be a positive too.

Regional water supplier Affinity Water says harder water is much more pleasing on the tastebuds compared to soft water - and adds there are no dangers of using or consuming hard water.

An Affinity Water spokesperson said: "Drinking water is either naturally hard or soft, depending on the geology of the area the water is taken from.

"In our central area, the water we supply is ‘hard’ as the water is sourced from deep underground in the chalk aquifer.

"Hard water is caused by the presence of naturally occurring minerals such as calcium, which are picked up as water passes through rocks underground.

"The NHS recognises that calcium helps build strong bones and teeth.

"While household cleaning products are thought to be more effective with soft water, many people prefer the taste of hard water due to the natural minerals in it."