Eight tips to ensure you smell fresh all day

Body odour is a common issue that affects many people worldwide and can cause feelings of stress and embarrassment. 

Bacteria that flourish in warm, damp places such as the armpits, groin, and feet are to blame for the smell coming from your body. These bacteria break down the sweat your apocrine glands produce, releasing an unpleasant odour.

Although sweating is natural, body odour can be embarrassing and lead to low self-esteem and a lack of confidence. 

Here are some of the best ways to manage body odour so you can smell fresh all day.

Keep your body clean

Keeping your body clean is one of the most important methods of preventing body odour. Regular bathing or showering helps to remove sweat and bacteria from your skin. This is essential, as the smell is caused when the bacteria present on the surface of the skin come in contact with the sweat produced by our sweat glands.

Use a mild, non-irritant soap or body wash and focus on areas that are more prone to sweat and bacteria. After showering, remember to dry your skin properly to avoid moisture buildup, which can create a breeding ground for bacteria.

When buying body wash or soap, look for ingredients such as eucalyptus, tea tree oil, and peppermint, as these have natural anti-bacterial properties.

Choose the right clothes

Wearing breathable clothing made from natural fibres, such as cotton, can help keep the body cool and dry and facilitate air circulation. Synthetic fabrics, such as polyester and nylon, should be avoided as they trap sweat and moisture, often leading to body odour.

Choosing the right colour clothing is also important. In the summer, stay away from dark colours such as black because they absorb heat instead of reflecting it, making the wearer feel warmer.

Darker clothes can also show sweat patches more easily, while lighter colours can be better at hiding sweat stains.

Use an antiperspirant or deodorant

Antiperspirants and deodorants are topical chemical agents designed specifically to prevent body odour. Deodorants help mask the odour caused by bacteria, while antiperspirants work on the skin’s surface by blocking sweat glands. Apply these to your skin, preferably after showering in the morning and not immediately before or after a workout.

Use an antiperspirant at least twice a day, and go for products that contain metallic salts and aluminium compounds such as aluminium chloride that prevent the production of sweat.

Consider shaving

Shaving your armpits can be a great way to prevent body odour, as the hair can trap sweat and dirt, thus creating an environment for odour-causing bacteria to thrive. 

In addition to reducing the surface area on which bacteria can grow, shaving can also help keep the underarms dry. 

When shaving, be sure to use a clean, sharp razor and apply a shaving cream or gel beforehand to help reduce irritation.

Drink up

Drinking plenty of water can help flush toxins from your body and reduce the concentration of bacteria in your sweat. Make sure you’re giving your body enough water each day and avoid consuming too many beverages that dehydrate you, such as caffeine and alcohol.

Follow a healthy balanced diet

Consuming a lot of spicy foods with pungent ingredients such as garlic and onion can cause an increase in body odour. Stimulants such as caffeine can also alter the composition of sweat.

Frequently eating red meat and processed foods can increase sweat production. To neutralise the odour-causing effects of these foods, yoghurt and mint can be incorporated into the diet.

Cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage, contain a high volume of volatile sulphur compounds that cause body odour when digested.

However, it is important to note that different foods have different reactions in each person’s body, with the quantity and frequency of consumption also playing a major role.

Frequently change your socks and shoes

The feet contain more sweat glands than any other part of your body, with each foot containing more than 125,000 sweat glands.

Wearing the same shoes and socks every day can lead to sweat and bacteria accumulating in your shoes, causing a foul smell. 

Change your shoes and socks daily, and wear socks made from breathable materials to keep your feet dry and sweat free.

If you wear the same pair of shoes every day, this may create a moist environment for bacteria to grow. To prevent this, use shoe deodorisers or leave them out in the sun for a few hours when you can.

Keep stress levels low

One of the best ways to avoid body odour from developing is to manage and control your stress levels. Stress can increase the activity of the apocrine glands and trigger the release of sweat, which can lead to body odour. 

By following these tips, and maintaining good personal hygiene, you should be able to keep body odour at bay and feel fresh and confident all day long.

However, if you still experience persistent body odour, it is best to seek medical advice as excessive sweating is a recognised medical condition that may require treatment. 

Do you use deodorant or antiperspirant daily? Have you ever had to talk to someone about their body odour? Why not share your thoughts in the comments section below?

Also read: What your body odour says about your health

Ellie Baxter
Ellie Baxter
Writer and editor with interests in travel, health, wellbeing and food. Has knowledge of marketing psychology, social media management and is a keen observer and commentator on issues facing older Australians.
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