Strong underarm odor haunts many people. Hanging out with friends or lovers with the strong odor coming out of your underarm will make you embarrass and lost the confidence. When you walk up to your friends, you don’t want them to notice the smell and it makes the interaction awkward. Bad underarm odor definitely can ruin your day.
There are reasons why people have the strong underarm odor. It may be caused by stress, spicy foods, poor diet, consumption of caffeine and alcohol, hormonal change, puberty hot weather or heavy workout, and many more. There are ways to get rid of the odor, and the most well-known is, of course, deodorants. However, deodorants are only a temporary solution because it only covers the bad smell. In this article, you will learn how to get rid of underarm odor by preventing and applying several home remedies.
What You Need to Know About Underarm Odor
If you are suffering many awkward situations caused by the odor, rest assure, because you are not the only one. There are many people who also have the strong odor coming out of their underarm and all of them, of course, also eager to find how to get rid of it.
Underarm odor is not caused by sweat. In fact, human sweat is odorless. The one that is responsible making the odorless sweat into unbearable smelly odor is bacteria. The bacteria are multiplying by using our sweat, underarm sweat. This multiplying produces protein keratin and it makes the underarm sweat smells.
How to Get Rid of The Underarm Odor?
Underarm odor can be kept at bay. There are two main ways in getting rid of the odor. First is through prevention. Preventing smelly underarm odor mostly deals with hygiene and lifestyle.
The second one is through home remedies. The remedies can be done as prevention, however, mostly the remedies applied as you already have the underarm odor problem.
10 Ways on How to Get Rid of Underarm Odor
1. Change Your Lifestyle
There are certain lifestyles that can cause underarm odor. From related to your hygiene to how healthy your diet is.
- Take A Shower More Often
If you take a shower only once per two days, then there’s a big chance that your body will smell like underarm odor. So taking shower daily is essential to get rid of underarm odor. Try to shower once a day, even though you are tired or don’t have enough time. Shower keeps the body fresh throughout the day and then it will keep the underarm odor away.
If you are an active person, taking a shower is very effective to prevent underarm odor. Shower after a long day or after working out at the gym will prevent the bad body odor building up. Just in case, if taking a shower once a day is not helping, try to take a shower for twice a day. Use an antibacterial soap for best results.
- Change Your Diet
High-fat foods and strong-smelling food can cause body odor. They can ooze through your pores and make the sweat smells. Actually, these foods are already listed as foods that can cause bad body odor.
Magnesium and zinc-rich foods can also neutralize body odor. These foods include fruits, grains, and veggies such as parsley, alfalfa, spinach lentils, avocado, bananas, and other green foods. In fact, spinach is very recommended to neutralize bad odor.
Correcting your diet will help to overcome overweight and obesity. The diet will lower your body strains and that will lead to decreasing body sweat. And then as you know, the bacteria will be decreasing too. Therefore, the underarm odor will be no longer your concern.
- Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine
It will be hard to avoid the alcohol and caffeine beverages if you are already addicted. However, if these drinks are the main cause of you smelly odor, you should consider avoiding them.
You really don’t want that consuming alcohol and caffeinated beverages will make you away from the one you care. You may love your morning coffee or glasses of beers, but if you really want to get rid of the underarm odor, then you should start to avoid them as soon as you can.
- Avoid Smoking
Tobacco in the cigarette is known to cause body and underarm odor. Quitting this habit not only keep the underarm odor away, it also keeps your body healthy. There’s a reason why the cigarette boxes are written with a warning “smokes kill”.
2. Wear Natural Fiber Clothing
Sweat is one of the factors that produce underarm odor. So, by reducing it you are one step ahead of getting rid of the bad odor. One of the ways to reduce sweat is wearing comfortable clothing. Clothes made of wool, silk wool are comfortable and will make body less sweating.
3. Wash Clothes More Often
Sweaty clothes will be the best place for bacteria to breed. Wash you daily clothes more often, especially if your body produces sweat more than normal people.
If you are a gym person, then it is better to wash the gym clothes more often too. You don’t want to go to the gym using smelly gym clothes.
Another option is changing your clothes more often, with clean clothes. Wearing the unwashed same clothes for days will make the bacteria happy to live and breed in your clothes and on your armpit. If you already have the bad odor problems, this will help because even though you take a shower regularly, wearing the same clothes will make the odor come back since the bacteria still live on the unwashed clothes.
4. Stay Hydrated
Water naturally cleanses human body. Drinking a lot of water will help to circulate your body fluid and keep our body fresh. The best amount of water to drink is at least 9 – 10 glasses of water a day. Sufficient water also makes your skin moist.
5. Shaving Your Underarm Regularly
Women have less bad underarm odor compared to men. It is because women shave their armpits more often than men. Because body hair under your arm is one of the best places for bacteria to settle, then shaving it will make the bacteria having a hard time to breed, especially if you also take a bath regularly. It is recommended to you who is fighting underarm odor to shave it every time you can, for the best result.
6. Try Some Relaxation Techniques
Most people will sweat when they are not relaxed or under stress. Stress and anxiety will make our body produce sweat more than often. Hence, controlling your mind to be relaxed will help to reduce sweating. Some relaxation techniques are doing meditation and yoga. These activities will help you to calm your mind. Another technique is by avoiding the situation that will cost you your calmness. For example, if you are a punctual person and are so afraid to be late, try to wake up earlier so you will not be late.
7. Apply An Antiperspirant at Bedtime
But why do you have to apply antiperspirants at bedtime? Applying them after taking a shower is proven ineffective. Your sweat will wash away the antiperspirant before the product even work. Applying at bedtime will help the product work, especially if you are not sweating while sleeping. Find deodorants that contain antiperspirant because deodorants only mask the smell, while antiperspirant reduces sweat one of the main causes of underarm odor.
8. Keep Your Underarms Dry
Yes, this is quite obvious. Dry underarms will prevent the bacteria from breeding. Then, how to keep it dry? First, you can just weep them with tissue paper. Of course, it will require a lot of tissue papers in hot weather, but it is worth a try. Second, you can keep staying in a room with air conditioner. The cool temperature will help you from over sweating.
9. Home Remedies
There are so many home remedies that you can use to get rid the underarm odor. Mostly it uses natural ingredients.
- Hydrogen Peroxide and Water
This remedy aims to kill the bacteria by using hydrogen peroxide. All you need to do is mixing 1 teaspoon of peroxide to 1 cup of water. Then wipe this off your underarm by using a washcloth. Apply it for some time to reduce the bacteria. You can also wipe the hydrogen peroxide directly onto your underarm. This home remedy also works for other body odor such as feet and groin.
Iodine has been recommended to combat smelly underarm odor. You need to apply the iodine first, then scrub it by using a soft brush. The, let the iodine work for 5 minutes and then you can take a shower as usual. It is claimed that after applying this remedy for some time, there’s a possibility that you won’t need to use deodorant anymore.
- Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
Apple cider vinegar is also claimed as the best replacement for deodorant. It contains anti-bacterial properties that will reduce the pH of your underarm skin. It will prevent them to multiply and hence, the underarm odor eventually will be gone. You can apply this remedy by wiping the vinegar onto your underarm by using a cotton ball.
This remedy can also be applied through a spray bottle. Mix the vinegar with water in spray bottle and spray it on the armpit areas.
Please remember to not to apply the vinegar right after you shave your armpit or when you have broken skin. And make sure that you are not allergic to apple cider vinegar.
- Baking Soda
There are ways to make home remedies from baking soda. First, you can to mix baking soda and lemon juice 1 tablespoon each. Then apply it on the armpits. Let the remedy do their work for some time. Then, you can rinse off the armpits with clean water.
Second, you can mix the baking soda with a little amount of cornstarch and then, of course, apply it on the armpits. This kind of remedy will reduce excess sweating.
Third, you can use baking soda paste and add a little water. This remedy is the best if it is applied after taking a shower. You can add tea tree oil to give the paste a pleasant fragrance.
Generally, baking soda remedy can kill the bacteria and reduce the sweat.
- Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is also useful to combat underarm odor. It is usually used as the essential oil to cure various skin problems. You can apply it by wiping the oil directly to your underarm skin or you can use a spray bottle. Please make sure that you are not allergic to this oil before considering applying it.
Furthermore, there are so many other home remedies that you can find to get rid of underarm odor.
10. Talk to Professional
If all of the tips above fail to get rid of underarm odor from your body, then maybe it’s time to visit a doctor. There are people born with excessive sweating which is called hyperhidrosis and it requires a treatment. Then, sometime it also caused by medical problems so it really needs a professional attention.
For example, people with kidney or liver problems have bigger chances having the strong underarm odor. The odor obviously won’t go away by only applying the methods above.
Another option in getting rid the bad odor from the professional is by open surgery. A procedure called superficial liposuction curettage can remove the sweat glands from your body. The surgery indeed riskier but the result certainly lasts longer.
Then, there’s the Clostridium botulinum that offered by cosmetic surgery. This procedure injects botox to the armpit. The botox will prevent the brain reaching the sweat glands in the armpit. However, the procedure does not give you a permanent result. Approximately the effect will last only for 2 to 8 months. After that, you need to spend more money to inject the botox again.
Those are how you get rid of underarm odor. Please make sure to contact your doctor if none of these works.