Body odor is the unpleasant smell the human body gives off when bacteria on the skin comes in contact with sweat from the body.
It is also known as Bromhidrosis, a health condition which is majorly caused by secretions of the sweat glands. The sweat glands are of two types; the apocrine and eccrine glands.
Eccrine glands are found in many parts of the body with a greater percentage in the head, palm and sole of your feet. Its sweat is usually odorless until bacteria finds a way to break down the sweat.
Apocrine glands are found in limited parts of the body like the armpits, groin area and breasts. Sweat by apocrine glands contain personal scent also known as pheromones. Apocrine bromhidrosis is the most common type of bromhidrosis.
Parts of the body where unpleasant smell is likely to occur are arm pits, feet, anus, genitals, groin, and navel (belly button).
What Causes Body Odor?
There are a few factors that could make one give off an unpleasant smell.
- People often attribute body odor to sweat but sweat on its own doesn’t cause body odor. Body odor is caused by sweat which is broken down by bacteria on the skin.
- As earlier mentioned, the apocrine glands are majorly responsible for body odor because sweat from these glands contain high amount of protein which can be easily broken down by bacteria.
- Underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, liver or kidney failure can cause smelly sweat or breath. In this case, it is advisable you see a doctor for proper medical advice.
- Also know that your diet has a hand in how you smell. Spicy foods such as curry and garlic can make you give off offensive smell.
1. Shave Underarm and Shower Regularly
These two seem so obvious but it’s really necessary that I mention them here. Having a clean shave and regular shower are crucial steps in the fight against body odor. Try to shave the hair in your pubic region and underarm as often as possible. To keep your body clean, you should bath at least twice a day.
Also Read: 7 Amazing Ways To Smell Good All Day
2. Apple Cider Vinegar
Applying apple cider vinegar on your skin makes it a no-breeding ground for bacteria owing to the fact that it changes the pH level of your skin.
Application: With the aid of a cotton ball, dab your skin (underarm) with a portion of apple cider vinegar and you would be good for the day. You may want to dilute it with some water before use as it has a strong smell.
3. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil contains lauric acid which forms monolaurin, an antimicrobial agent that’s capable of fighting bacteria and other pathogens. This makes coconut oil very potent in the fight against body odor.
Application: Apply a considerable amount of coconut oil to your underarms and enjoy your day without having to worry about body odor.
4. Lemon Juice
Lemon is acidic in nature and so does not allow bacteria to thrive in areas where it’s applied. This chemical property makes it a good remedy for unpleasant body scent.
Application: Cut a lemon into two halves and rub it generously around areas where body odor emanates from (the underarm). Allow it some time to dry off. For best results, apply the lemon after having a clean shower and experience freshness for hours. Be careful not to apply the lemon if you just shaved your underarms to avoid any skin reaction.
Cornstarch is resistant to moisture accumulation and bacteria overgrowth. These properties make it a good remedy for body odor.
Application: Apply a considerable amount of the cornstarch powder on your underarms after a clean shower and you’re good to go for the rest of the day.
6. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is known for solving many issues, some of which include preventing infection of minor injuries and burns. It’s a mild antiseptic and it comes in handy in the fight against body odor due to the fact that bacteria doesn’t thrive on areas where it’s applied.
Application: Get a bowl and dilute a 5ml of hydrogen peroxide with cup of water. Dip a washcloth (or cotton wool, depending on your preference) into the diluted hydrogen peroxide and apply generously to your underarm to reduce the effect of smell causing bacteria.
PS: The results from the use of these home remedies may differ from person to person. So, just experiment with them to find which works best for you. If after continuous use over a week, you don’t get good results, consider seeing a doctor for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Are there other home remedies for body odor which you have applied? Share with us in the comments section.