We know… embracing pre-meeting wet spots on your blouse can be awkward no matter what, but maybe it’s time to appreciate sweat for what it really is…
I remember it like yesterday…. Heading into the locker room post-junior high gym, I bore witness to for the first time… well, 2 things: Aqua Net and Dove. Hairspray and antiperspirant, respectively.
Pretty sure they were subsequently and immediately added onto our family’s drugstore shopping list. Junior high is cut-throat, and god forbid that you should dare whip out from your bag anything other than what everyone else has. My mom instilled in me around the age of 8 the importance of eating well, and I believe she imparted on me a speech around this time about aluminum in antiperspirant being a potential health risk. But no matter — I wanted my hair to defy gravity like my friends’ hair, and I wanted my underarms to smell as baby powder clean as theirs, too. Somehow she sucked it up (not literally, unless she was standing behind me in the bathroom) and obliged my wants.
Cut to today, and it’s become somewhat more common knowledge that antiperspirant is not the godsend it was once touted as, its aluminum content now in question of contributing to the onset of diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer. The jury is still out on this, but word and concern spread quickly enough that a whole sea of consumers began to shift their focus onto deodorants, crystals, or using nothing at all. Letting the sweat fall where it may.
An awkward transition to be sure — because, even if you landed the deodorant of your dreams, worthy of masking even the most pungent of personal scents… how does one contend with sweat marks ?! EMBARRASSING!! What to do?
Well, I don’t have an answer on that, if I’m being honest. I’ve opted to wear darker clothes on those days when I know my armpits and I may be more visible, but being reminded of just WHY we sweat has helped me to accept it and let it go. Perhaps it will inspire you, too, to… perspire with confidence.
What Is Sweat, And Why Do I Do It?
Our skin is the largest organ, comprising about 16% of our body weight. So it makes sense that it, like our other organs, would require the need to detox. Through our pores, and via 2 types of sweat glands — accrine and apocrine — the body expels perspiration, and it is in this process that the body rids itself of excess toxins which results in better immune function. Not to mention that sweating also works to keep your pores clean, resulting in less time spent on extracting blackheads.
An equally important benefit of sweating? It helps to regulate your body temperature. So whether it’s a result of exercise or embarrassment or nerves, perspiration is your body’s way of keeping cool and not overheating.
But I Sweat A Lot??
Now, of course not all bodies are built the same. There are some of us who sweat a LOT more than others and, for you, we have two sustainable and healthy options to consider:
1. Cotton, cotton, cotton! Natural fabric, whether it be your shirt, underwear, bedsheets may allow your skin to breathe more freely and minimize the amount of sweat that makes itself evident on your clothing.
2. You may want to nix the spicy food. Capsaicin, a chemical that creates the heat in foods like peppers, triggers the central nervous system to react to this “warm” sensation by cooling our bodies down, ie. let the sweating commence.
You can also look here for cruelty-free deodorant options to help ensure that, even on those summer days when you’re catching up with a friend over some vegan falafel, you’re smelling your absolute best.