"Hi sofeminine, I don't sweat that much but when I do it really pongs. I feel gross, especially when I exercise...It bothers both me and I'm worried that my boyfriend notices. I don't know what to do. Any ideas?"
Got Body Odor (BO)?
Sweat actually has no smell - it's essentially salt water.
But when sweat comes in contact with bacteria on your skin it can produce an unpleasant odor.
Fortunately there are two ways to counter body odor effectively - and they're super simple too.
Take a warm shower
Taking a shower will obviously help combat body odor but you have to get the temperature right. Not too cold and not too hot. Temperature changes are immediately countered with sweating so make sure the water temp is just right.
Wash at least once a day with pH neutral soap which is gentle on the skin, or, in cases of aggressive perspiration (like Lily), with antibacterial soap which eliminates the bacteria responsible for bad odors.
If the problem is really severe don't hesitate to ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice. Your doctor can give you great tips on managing excessive sweating - don't be embarrassed to ask for help - you'll feel (and smell) better for it.
When washing pay special attention to areas like the scalp, armpits and feet. Only use warm water when washing your rude bits as soap can irritate the area and make the problem worse down there too!
Wear a good deodorant
There are many types of deodorant and anti-perspirant. Try a deodorant which will neutralize odor rather than mask it or stop sweating altogether.
Nivea, Dove and Sanex make deodorants that are kind to skin. Look for brands that offer Ph Neutral protection.
You can also try alternative deodorants such as crystals or alum stones which work by restricting the proteins in your sweat, giving bacteria less to feed on.