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Kicking Odor Out

And now, a handy life tip.

Living in a hot climate such as Phoenix, people tend to sweat. Even if you live somewhere cold, stress and exercise are among a myriad of reasons you'll sweat over the course of a day. Were we all nudists, the story would stop there: we'd sweat, we'd bathe, and that would be the last we'd hear of it.

Our global culture being overall "civilized," though, we have deigned to carry on our daily business clothed, with the purpose of hiding our other business.

This is all well and good (I spend less time feeling bad about not being some washboarded Adonis) up until we break north past the nipple line. There, my friends, lies our primary enemy: the armpit. It sweats. Your shirt absorbs it. Funk happens.

Funk comes in many shapes and sizes, including but not limited to discoloration, antiperspirant buildup, and permanent stench. Let us delve into solutions for as many as I've encountered in my clothes-wearing life.

Antiperspirant Buildup
You've probably lost a shirt to this. We probably all have. Your arms stay reasonably dry, but over time this waxy, crusty thing appears in the underarm area of your shirtsleeves. Usually right where the fabric tucks into your armpit.

Part the first: Meat tenderizer may be able to save any shirts already so afflicted. Be sure to get the unflavored variety, or you will rue your mistake later. Make a paste out of it with some water, work it in, and let it sit. Wash the shirt normally, and with any luck, you'll be as good as new. But believe you me, it will come back given half an opportunity.

Part the second: Change your primping and preening habits.

The easiest way to solve this is to cast aside antiperspirant altogether. Switch over to a pure deodorant and it won't occur again. If you wear cologne or perfume, you can use that in your underarms instead (and it will, in fact, probably work better than deodorant if you actually get all hot and sweaty).

If you're just a naturally sweaty beast, deodorant alone may not be an option. Instead, there are two ways to go about things. The first way is to shave or trim your armpit hair as short as you're comfortable with. Antiperspirant only works when it comes in contact with your skin. With less hair in the way, more actual antiperspiring will take place, the antiperspirant isn't lurking on your underarm hair waiting to make a mess, and you're likely to use less antiperspirant (using "too much" is what helps speed up the crap formation in the first place).

The second way is to use a product like Certain Dri at night and deodorant when you're getting ready in the morning. Do be advised that Certain Dri is ridiculously concentrated, and if you're worried about pumping your body full of aluminum (be it poor kidney health or just general distaste for excessive metals in your body), it's probably not for you. But if you're already using antiperspirant today, who's going to notice the difference? If it works for you, you're also using Certain Dri only two or three times a week, so it evens out in the end.

Next in our series... Perma-stench. Join me tomorrow for information!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 15, 2007 11:54 PM.

The previous post in this blog was Undershirts.

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