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5 tips for dealing with perspiration

Sara Vandal Comments

Exercising outdoors on a hot day? Drink lots of water—don’t wait until you’re thirsty!

Summers in Quebec are short but intense. Whether you’re physically active or not, when a heat wave strikes, you’re sure to sweat! Even though perspiring is important to our health, its effects aren’t always welcome. Here are some tips on how to avoid excessive sweating.

Perspiration 101

Let’s start by looking at why we sweat. Perspiration is a natural phenomenon that helps our body regulate its temperature by evacuating potentially harmful surplus heat.

It’s a myth that perspiration has an odour: sweat secreted by sebaceous glands is made up primarily of water—and also minerals, lactate and urea. So where does the unpleasant odour come from? Bacteria living in our body that feed on sweat. The more you sweat, the more they proliferate! Particularly under the arms and in the genital area where our apocrine glands produce good fat for bacteria.

5 tips to beat perspiration

Deodorant

Don’t disregard deodorant. The quality varies among brands, but the right products can be effective. They contain antibacterial ingredients that eliminate the bacteria-causing odours. So which are the best deodorants?

Two popular products are often suggested in-store: ROC Keops deodorant and Vichy Stress Resist Anti-perspirant roll-on. — The Vichy product offers 72-hour protection and is particularly effective on women who perspire excessively. Not convinced? Ask one of our cosmeticians for advice. They’ll be happy to help you chose the product that’s right for you.

Clothing

Physically active? Be aware that synthetic fibres (e.g. nylon, polyester) trap sweat and contribute to odour build-up. To avoid smelling unpleasantly when doing exercise, wear good old cotton shirts or other natural fabrics that are breathable and wick away moisture.

Next, opt for loose clothing. Close-fitting fabrics that stick to your skin prevent it from breathing. More air means less moisture and fewer odour-causing bacteria.

Feet

Don’t forget your precious feet! The soles are rich in sebaceous glands, and since shoes mould your feet, there’s about as much air circulation in your shoe as in a sauna. Add to that hot weather and intensive exercise and you have the best conditions for the build-up of unpleasant odours.

The golden rule is to air out your shoes after exercising and wash your socks after each use. If you sweat easily, use a deodorant or antiperspirant specially designed for feet.

Hygiene

Don’t skimp on showers! It’s hot, you’re keeping active and perspiring abundantly—the sun isn’t going to give you a fresh clean scent! And if that means having a quick shower several times a day, so be it!

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