35 answers

Sweaty Armpits

All of my adult life I have sweated a lot under my arms. I don't sweat much elsewhere unless I am actively working out or it is a very hot day. I have used most types of antiperspirant and it really doesn't do much but control odor. (Deodorant alone does not control the odor.) It would be nice to not sweat so much, but it causes a secondary problem that I am more concerned about at this time and that is my shirts get stained at the arm pits. The technician at the dry cleaners' said the stains are from oils in the skin mixing with the sweat. I can't really get the stains out. Any advice on the sweaty armpits or on how to get the stains out of my clothes is appreciated.

2 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Well, I tried most of the suggestions, including the sliced potato. I ended up talking to my doctor about the problem. She perscribed Drysol, and it works great. She also told me she would look for a dermatologist in my area to refer me to for Botox. In the meantime, I am happy to have dry armpits.

Featured Answers

My horomones are nuts after childbirth and I sweat like a man who's ran a marathon all the time. I saw a commercial for "Secret Perscription Strength" deodorant. I got some, it as about $9 but I swear, it's working great. I still sweat, but my underarms stay pretty dry and I hardly ever notice any odor. You can get it at any walmart or target. I'd try this before the expensive treatments, it might work for you, and the weather is changing so it might be just enough to get you through. I wish my horomones would chill out, but until they do, Secret is my Secret :)

2 moms found this helpful

I used an OTC deodorant for a while, CertainDri, until I got pregnant with my 2nd baby. You put it on at night every couple of days, and it works wonders so you don't sweat as much. You may want to try it out before you go to the heavier-duty fixes, like Botox.

Good Luck.

2 moms found this helpful

My Yiayia(grandma) swears that cheap shampoo can get out ANY stain! It has worked wonders for me! Might try it!

2 moms found this helpful

More Answers

J.,

You're probably going to laugh when I tell you this...........

But believe it or not an ordinary Idaho potato works well for controlling perspiration and odor. (Told you you'd laugh;-)

BUT IT WORKS!!!

People are often confused when they purchase deodorants and antiperspirants. Deodorants mask odor and do not prevent perspiration. While an antiperspirant keeps you from sweating and some, not all, will also mask odor.

I am allergic to everything under the sun and that includes deodorants. My Great-Grandmother told me about this as a teenager and I've been using it ever since.

How to Use:

Cut off the end of a potato and remove some of the peel. Rub under your arm three or four times just as you would your OTC deodorant. Rinse and cover the potato with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Repeat daily.

To alleviate the underarm stains (which are a chemical reaction between your body's natural oils, soaps, deodorant and sweat) I have found that applying a rub or two of the Spray-n-Wash stain stick after each wear helps keep the yellowing to a minimum.

If this sounds way too out there for you you could try Lavilin Deodorant (mothernature.com) It averages about $15 for 12.5 gram jar. While I've never used it, some say it works very well.

Hope this helps!!
Connie

2 moms found this helpful

My Yiayia(grandma) swears that cheap shampoo can get out ANY stain! It has worked wonders for me! Might try it!

2 moms found this helpful

My horomones are nuts after childbirth and I sweat like a man who's ran a marathon all the time. I saw a commercial for "Secret Perscription Strength" deodorant. I got some, it as about $9 but I swear, it's working great. I still sweat, but my underarms stay pretty dry and I hardly ever notice any odor. You can get it at any walmart or target. I'd try this before the expensive treatments, it might work for you, and the weather is changing so it might be just enough to get you through. I wish my horomones would chill out, but until they do, Secret is my Secret :)

2 moms found this helpful

I used an OTC deodorant for a while, CertainDri, until I got pregnant with my 2nd baby. You put it on at night every couple of days, and it works wonders so you don't sweat as much. You may want to try it out before you go to the heavier-duty fixes, like Botox.

Good Luck.

2 moms found this helpful

My husband stopped using antiperspirant and uses deodorant only because the antiperspirant was causing the staining on his shirt. However, with your excessive sweating, I am not sure if that is your best option. Just a thought.

2 moms found this helpful

There is a product recently recommended to me as a tried and true alternative antiperspirant/deodorant and skin cure all called Ammens Original Medicated Powder - it also comes in a specialized version JUST as an antiperspirant. You can view customer reviews, ingredient lists, and order from the following website : http://www.drugstore.com/templates/brand/default.asp?bran...

It is a talc powder with the active ingredient being zinc oxide - so basically powered desitin! My daughter has very sensitive skin, eczema, and we are currently battling a mysterious outbreak of KP (keratosis pilaris, otherwise known as "chicken skin") - it has helped immensely where nothing else has, including prescription topical steroid cream. I would recommend it to ANYONE now. There are rave reviews attesting to its deodorant/antiperspirant - it is a fairly cheap to order product, and definitely worth a try!

2 moms found this helpful

I use to have the same problem. Sweat would run down the side of body from my armpits. I used every type of deodorant/antiperspirant out there. Every shirt I had was ruined with stains. Finally I started using just a deodorant because I was told the antiperspirant was staining my clothes. Well, I didn't sweat any more that I use to and my clothes stopped staining. About 6 months later a really weird thing happened. I started sweating less. Now I hardly sweat at all. I'm not sure why, but I know some other people this happen to.

I had to try a few deodorants without antiperspirants before I found one that worked (they are difficult to find). The one that works great for me is Herbal Clear from 21stcententuryproducts.com

Good Luck!
Good Luck

2 moms found this helpful

I have a friend who's sworn he's got extra-toxic sweat who went through every kind of deodorant/antiperspirant he could find looking for something that would work and help with the clothing stains. He swears by one of those simple crystal deodorants. I started using one an have liked it, too -- I think it might with time cut back on sweating (and definitely doesn't stain) since it's not blocking the pores, and works quite well with odor (if you smell anything at the end of a long day it's much milder than the acrid, chemical thing you might expect with antiperspirants). I've tried other natural deodorants and they didn't control odor as well. Good luck!

2 moms found this helpful

oh my god, I have the same problem. I keep changing deodorant with the same result. was trying to figure out if its the sign of any disorder. The only solution I found so far is to use removable pads- shields, which stick to the clothes. http://www.kleinertsshields.com
good luck

1 mom found this helpful

I'm 44 years old and I've had this problem all my life and now my 14 year old son has the same problem. What has always worked for me (and now for my son) is Mitchum roll-on. I also use unscented so that my clothes don't get an odd odor. Nothing other than the roll-on works and even though my son doesn't like how wet it is at first, he finally realized that the solid, etc. just doesn't work the same. You might also use shields on your nicer clothes, but honestly since I've been using Mitchum, I haven't had a problem. The last time I used underarm shields was with my wedding dress 20 years ago!

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi J.,

I don't know if you have considered it or not, but you can go to a plastic surgeon or dermatologist and have botox injections. It helps decrease the amount of sweat that you are producing. I have a friend who did it and was extremely pleased with the results-- it lasted about 6-9mos or so and then she had to go back and do it again- but it was well worth it to her~

Good luck.

M.

1 mom found this helpful

J.,

I had the same problem with sweating. It was so bad that I had to wear sleeveless shirts all of the time. I finally asked my Dr about it (this was about 7 years ago) and she prescribed me Drysol deoderant. I used it for about 6 mons - 1 yr and haven't had the problem ever since. It did burn my armpits, especially if I had just shaved, but I just put it on at night every couple of days. I would talk to your Dr about it. There may be new stuff out by now.

1 mom found this helpful

I've heard of people getting botox in their 'pits???

1 mom found this helpful

Hi,

I know that sweating is a real bummer for many of the reasons you listed but it is a healthy way for your body to release toxins so it is a necessary part of a healthy system. That being said which I'm sure won't bring you much comfort (sorry) I do know something that might help. I learned a little trick in esthetician school a few years ago and it works for me as I only use non-toxic deoderants which don't really work 100% and needed to also find something that actually worked. Mix 1/2 cup corn starch (whisks away moisture) with 1/2 cup baking soda (dissolves stinky bacteria) make sure it is mixed well put in a shaker can (you can get one in kitchen utensil place for spices) and apply with a cotton round. You will have to re-apply if your a chronic or heavy sweater but at least it should protect your clothes. Since I have used it I have no stains. I think stains are more from your deoderant mixing with your sweat rather than just from the oils alone, at least that is what my professor thought. I make sure and get organic corn starch since corn is such a pesticide laden vegie and natural baking soda with no metals like aluminum due to its toxicity. I hope this helps you and you might find that it works better during the winter when its not 100 degrees out. I use a brand from the health food store called Herbalix Restoratives which actually works so I trade back and forth.
Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Anti-perspirant doesn't work???? Pretreating with Spray-N-Wash or Shout will usually remove the stains and any odor not removed by laundering.

Apparently you can Botox your armpits if you're really desperate, but that's really expensive and there are new studies indicating that Botox may actually be somewhat toxic.

I was on the pill until recently and I have noticed much more sweating and odor since I went off the pill. I think it's maybe because my testosterone levels have increased since I'm off the pill. Just a guess.

1 mom found this helpful

I know someone with the same problem. Sounds like you need a type of steroid injection.

Dear J.:

You're not alone! I make an aromatic spray in my line of essential oil products that is very effective at cutting down the amount of sweat and controlling odor. Bergamot is the active oil, which is renowned for killing the bacteria that live on the surface of the skin and cause body odor. I use it to control underarm, groin and foot sweating, since they are all problems for me. It really helps.

Another approach that I tried with great success was Botox injections in the armpits. We don't have a lot of nerve endings in the armpit area, so it's not painful. It takes 80 or so units of Botox for the injection and at $10-15 a unit, it is costly, but the treatment lasts 9-12 months for most people.

I can't afford to do the treatment again, so rely on my natural spray for daily use. It can be used as often as you need ... on very warm or high-stress days I sometimes have to reapply in the afternoon.

Hi J.. We all have our crazy body problems,,, don't feel bad. My mom has the same problem as does my sister. They both use powder under their arms on top of their deodarant. Hope this helps a little. Good luck!

Hi J.~ From what I hear you can get BOTOX shot in your under-arms. This is supposed to stop the production of sweat and should help with avoiding those nasty stains.

Something to consider.
Good luck.
M.

I know this isn't what you asked for, but there is a medication that dermatologists use for excessive sweating called Hytrin
(or terazosin is the generic). It is taken 1-2 mg twice a day.
It has few side effects - I've never had a patient complain of any problems, and it works for most people. I'm a psychiatrist, not a dermatologist and have used it for 3-4 patients only.

I have to say ditto on the Drysol. I too have used it and it was a great help. I used it some years back for about 2 months... i think and I didn't have a problem for almost 2-3 years. I am experiencing a problem again but not nearly as bad as it was prior to Drysol. I just stopped breastfeeding so I will be using it again but i think it is not recommended for pregnant women or those breastfeeding. Ask your family doctor.

I have a sweat problem also, and I have tried so many different types of deodorants and antiperspirants. I recently started using Mitchum for women and this is the best antiperspirant I have ever used. I used to have to apply my deodorant two or three times a day...now I don't even have to reapply after a hard workout or run. It is really inexpensive, around 3 dollars, but it works great. I know that they have all of the new clinical strength deodorants out there, but I myself cannot afford to spend $8 on a stick of deodorant. Try the Mitchum, it is the only thing that has every truly worked for me. :) Good luck!

My son's 28-year old girlfriend had the same problem. Like you she tried everything and was about to make a doctor appointment to get relief. She decided to try one more OTC product. Certain Dri has done the trick. You use it at night after a shower and use a regular deoderant in the morning. You can still shower in the morning, so if that is a habit, don't worry. Now she no longer worries about sweaty armpits or ruined clothes. Try it it works!

I have that issue as well. I found Certain Dry deoderant/antipersperant to work the best of anything. It's very strong and you have to follow the directions.

You could also look into Botox injections. Sounds bizarre, but it can be used to control excessive sweating.

I don't know that they are still available...but years ago, there used to be "guards". This was simply pads to absorb the moisture instead of getting your clothes wet and stained. You might do some research and see if they are still available. Good luck.
A.

J., I feel your pain--I have much the same situation. I have recently started using the Certain Dri antiperspirant--it comes in a nighttime formula or a daytinme formula. Neither one should be used right after shaving. I even have trouble if I've shaved in the morning and use it that night--it makes me itch terribly.

Degree also make a great antiperspirant that I now use every morning AND can use right after shaving. It has made such a difference and there are many days when I don't have any sweat stains under my arms.

I found both of them at Target. There are also small bottles of solutions that will take the underarm stains out of your clothes than don't have to be dry cleaned. I also found that using a stain treater on that area once or twice will break it down.

Good luck!!!

I am very empathetic I have the same problem, and I am a teacher so it is especially aware of the problem. Once I had a dermitologist convince me to botox under my arms and i have to say it was GREAT for more than 6 months, but it seemed exessive to do that all the time. I have found that the secret prescription strength while a little pricy has worked really well and I notice a difference in visible sweat. Good luck

I empathize. I used to have the same problem and I don't know how many shirts I ruined. I tried everything and the only thing I found that actually worked was Certain Dri antiperspirant. Be careful though, I would start out every other night or just a couple nights a week. It is VERY drying, almost uncomfortable. But, it was worth it to me.
You can also get an Rx from your Dr. or Botox if nothing else works. Hope it helps.

I too have the same problem and my MD prescribed me this stuff that helps. It makes you itch when you put it on at night, but it helps with hyperhydrosis. Good luck, I'm not sure what the name of it is, but it says drysol on the container.

Certain dri is the best product out their use it at night before you go to bed (just follow directions on back of box. It haults sweating within a week or two. Just wear your normal deoderant during the day. it is over the counter.You can get it at Longs or most drug stores should have it. It is a little hard to spot. It is in a white box with black and red writing.

To reduce the perspiration, ask your doctor if he/she can prescribe Drysol. You might need to get a referral to a dermatologist. You only use it a few times a week at first and then once a week after that. It works very well, my 17 year old son uses it and his underarms stay dry even when working out. I kinda wonder where the perspiration GOES because it has to come out somewhere...

oxyclean those stains, mama! i've used oxyclean (available at most drug stores, etc) on many a stain that wouldn't come out any other way -
good luck!
S.

Try dermadoctor's total non-scents antiperspirant. It is more expensive and you have to either order it online or do to a specialty cosmetics store (like sephora), but it works better than any other product I've tried. None of the usual brands seemed to help me and I tried quite a few of the more expensive ones with better results, but this one is the best. No smell at all, no wet pits.

Nothing to be done about the stains. They just don't come out.

J.,
I stared using the clinical strength secret to help control the sweat. Not nearly as bad as it used to be. I also use a cleaner called soilove on my shirts that need it. It takes the stains right out, no problem. It is also the only thing that worked and I tried 5 different things first. Mind you my work shirts are all white, so everything shows. I have found the cleaner with the laundry detergents at safeway, and at the 99 cent stores.
W.

Hi J.,

Have you considered acupuncture? In chinese medicine, excessive sweating may be caused by an imbalance which may be treated with not too much difficulty.

Good luck to you!

G.

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