Personal smells are very personal, non? I am one of those people who is fastidious about not having an odor at all. I rarely wear perfume, having grown up around people who are extremely sensitive to (and sometimes also extremely obnoxious about) smells, and one of my worst fears is that I will be somewhere, get a whiff of onion, and realize it is me. Since I dealt with foot-stank growing up (Karen can tell you all about how my feet smelled like Fritos) I am hyper-sensitive to being as olfactorily inoffensive as possible.
Spring is here, and that means the Texas summer will be upon us in about 3 hours, so I am listing below some of my tips and tricks for staying stink-free in the hot weather.
1. You have to bathe regularly. That’s a given, yes? I love the Dr. Bronner’s liquid soaps, especially the Peppermint. Thor loves this soap, too. You put some on a bath-pouf and lather up, and your skin gets all kinds of wonderful tingly and fresh feeling. I also really like the eucalyptas and tea tree flavors, but they have softer scents like citrus, lavendar, and rose, too.
One of the major pluses to a tingly soap like this is that you can tell exactly what’s been washed and what hasn’t. So, if you’ve missed a spot, a nook, or a cranny, you’ll know it. And there is always my personal bath motto of: Lift it, shift it, scrub it. It’s the only way to be sure you aren’t funky.
2. Pre-emptive deodorizing. I like to use unscented, or very lightly scented anti-perspirants. I prefer a stick solid. I know that some people feel like these are silent killers, but I would argue that Stank is also a silent killer.
Deodorant crystals do not work. The only people who think these work are the people who use them, and the only people who agree with those people, are also using them.
If I’m wearing a skirt or shorts, since nothing on my body is concave, I usually stripe a couple of swipes of deodorant onto my inner thighs. This keeps my legs from getting slick and sweaty, reduces the chance of getting heat rash, and also adds some stank protection. When Thor was a baby, I would use the Aquaphor Healing Ointment I put on his bottom to prevent diaper rash. That stuff was fantastic! But since I am never in the baby aisle anymore, and since my Dove Ultimate Go Fresh Cool Essentials does the trick, I just use that.
I also like powder. Powder is my friend! My favorite is Gold Bond Cornstarch and Baby Powder. I sploof some of that under my arms after I put on deodorant, and whuff a generous amount of it into my undergarments. Keeps things nice and comfortable, and reduces the chance of getting whiffy during the day.
3. Protect & clean your garments. If you’re a sweat-er, then you know for pit stains. And pit stains can mean stank. When I’ve worked under kleig lights, I’ve put panty liners in the pits of my garments to keep them dry. These also wick away moisture from your pits. If you get the deodorizing kind, they offer another layer of stank protection–although, I think those fragrances stink worse than funk when they are warmed up.
And, especially in the summertime, if an article of clothing has been rubbing against your pit, foot, or crotchal regions for more than 12 hours, it’s time to wash it.
I think the best advice is this: If you think it might stink, wash it, dry it, and powder it. And carry baby wipes.