The moment we step into an elevator, most of us try to discretely take a whiff of ourselves to make sure that we aren’t too smelly! Some people can shower just once every two days and still remain free of body odor while other people shower twice a day and still face this problem. Some people hope that by slathering on layers of antiperspirant, they can disguise their problem but this rarely works.
So, what causes body odor and is there any way you can get rid of it for good?
Tips To Prevent Armpit Odor
Let’s just touch on some basic science here – we have two types of sweat glands — eccrine and apocrine. The sweat from eccrine glands helps to control your body temperature and doesn’t start to smell unless it remains on your skin for quite a few hours.
Blame your BO on your apocrine glands! The apocrine glands secrete pheromone sexual hormones which gives your sweat that distinctive pungent odor. A large number of apocrine glands are concentrated in your underarm area which is why armpit odor is such a common problem.
1. Fix your shower routine
Yes, this sounds like the most obvious suggestion but before you roll your eyes – think about whether you’ve actually followed this rule for more than 2 weeks at a stretch! Most people try a new shower routine for a couple of days and when they don’t see quick results, they go back to their old routine. This is the ideal shower routine to beat underarm odor:
– Shower twice a day and after every gym session.
– Use warm not hot water since hot water will increase the production of sweat.
– Use an anti-bacterial soap.
– Apply soap to your underarms before you soap the rest of your body. The soap will have more time to work on the sweat and grime collected under your arms so that it can be easily removed.
– Use fresh towels as often as possible and air out your towel after each use instead of leaving it balled up in a corner!
2. Wear Natural Breathable Fabrics
All of us have heard that cotton clothing can prevent body odor, but is this true? A recent search studied the difference between cotton and polyester clothes on body odor. The researchers found that since cotton is a natural fiber that consists almost completely of cellulose, it has a much better capacity to adsorb sweat and odors as compared to polyester.
They also found that bacteria which cause body odor grow more on synthetic textiles than cotton. Wear loose cotton shirts as often as possible, especially during summer to combat underarm odor.
3. Dust Your Underarms With Baking Soda
Apply baking soda to your underarms after you have a shower. Baking soda is mildly alkaline in nature and it will help to lower the pH levels on your skin which deprives bacteria of the environment they require to thrive. Baking powder is also highly absorbent and bacteria require moisture to multiply which is why baking soda is an effective home remedy for smelly armpits.
You can also make a thin paste out of baking soda and fresh sour lime juice. Apply this paste to your underarms before you go to bed and rinse it off thoroughly when you shower in the morning. Lime juice is a strong acid that will help to destroy the bacteria in your armpits.
In the beginning, use this body odor remedy every day for approximately 10 days and once you have the problem under control, you can use it just once or twice a week to prevent smelly armpits.
4. Avoid Red Meat
Studies show that consuming red meat gives sweat a pungent and unpleasant odor. Avoid red meat as much as possible and have fish and poultry instead. Your diet should consist of plenty of fruits and vegetables as they have a high mineral and water content which will also help to control body odors.
You should also limit your intake of garlic and onions as these foods increase the potency of your body odor.
5. Remove underarm hair
Bacteria can form a yellow-brown coating on the hair shaft of the hair under your arms. This is a common problem especially if you have sweaty, smelly armpits. Shave, wax or use a hair removal cream to get rid of the hair under your arms.
After that, apply benzoyl peroxide gel to the area after your bath on a daily basis to get rid of the bacteria and stop armpit odor.
You can follow these steps to reduce armpit odor but it is important to understand that you can never completely get rid of every trace of the smell. On the plus side, a mild sweat smell contains pheromones which attracts members of the opposite sex, so once you have your body odor problems under control, you can expect a huge improvement in your social life!
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February 9, 2018