Is it just me getting older, or are our Texas summers getting more brutal each year?! It seems that just a simple trip to the mailbox calls for a shower–I wish I was exaggerating. So you can only imagine that this extreme heat combined with your teen’s raging hormones results in a situation that could leave your child feeling embarrassed and frustrated (if you’re lucky enough to have them be aware at all). No matter how much deodorant they put on, how consistent they are with their daily shower, they can’t seem to have their odor under control during the summer months. Here are a few tips they might be overlooking to help combat b.o.:
- Natural Clothing Materials
This one might be easy to dismiss, but let me tell you from personal experience that this makes all the difference! Body odor clings cakes between synthetic fibers and will leave your teen smelling rancid as it sits. So those cheaply made satin briefs from Victoria’s Secret? That polyester jumpsuit from Ross? Stay away. Instead, opt for 100% cotton, linen, or bamboo for the most breathable option. Bacteria and sweat get caught in between synthetic fibers where it is trapped instead of evaporated as it can be in natural fibers. Invest in cotton tops, undergarments, and lighter natural fabric for bottoms. That could mean avoiding denim in the daytime and switching out those cheap Target athletic shorts for a breathable linen pair. Your teen will notice a huge difference in how fresh they are throughout the day.
2. Change Underwear Mid-Day
Changing underwear mid-day is a game changer–and I promise you that it is worth the extra laundry. It instantly makes a person smell less and feel fresh. I taught my son to do this years ago between daytime events, and he was instantly hooked. Sometimes if we are out running around this oven of a Texas town, we will stop by the house for quick underwear changes. It takes literally just seconds, and instantly gives us clean, fresh energy.
3. Deodorant Before Bed + Morning
Double your teen’s odor protection by having them apply their deodorant and/or antiperspirant both at night and in the morning. Adding that night time step allows the product to absorb in the skin and can make it much more effective. And since most of us sweat at night, it’s all the more useful.
4. Washcloths are Your Bestie for the Testies
However, double applying your deodorant won’t do much good if your teen is not completely washing off old product residue in the shower. And I’m sorry to say, but that ratty loofah isn’t going to get the job done. This was the biggest issue for my teen when he first started developing body odor. He was so confused as to why his showers weren’t making a difference, even immediately after. Once he started using an actual wash cloth to gently scrub his body parts with soap, the odor was quickly under control. Have your teen also use this method on their entire bodies, especially feet, privates, and chest. Invest in a dozen or so washcloths so that your child is switching our for a fresh cloth every other day, but preferably every day. I know, more laundry…but take the L, mama. Your nose will thank you.
5. Add an Odor Remover to Your Laundry Load
Yes, I’m about to add more steps to your routine, but unfortunately, throwing sweaty clothes in the wash isn’t always going to get the funk out, especially in the armpit areas of tops and in padded bras. And it’s not always viable to wash certain clothing in hot water, so you’re going to need to add in an odor remover product such as Oxyclean Odor into your load. If you prefer a more natural option, try baking soda and white vinegar to the wash load. But either way, you can’t expect your teen to smell daisy fresh when their clothing is musty.
6. It Rubs the Drying Lotion on the Skin…
During a very addictive month of watching hygiene routine videos on YouTube for fun (what can I say, I’m a Virgo…), I was bombarded by Lume commercials, a deodorant body cream that combats sweat and odor for areas such as crotch, breast, butt, feet, all the things. I was immediately fascinated, but I wasn’t really feeling the price, so I searched Amazon and discovered a very affordable dupe, Super Fresh by SweatLock which comes in two variations, Lady Parts and Man Parts. Holy cow, I did NOT expect this product to work as well as it does. Just a tiny bit of product applied to either side of the crotch area (make sure to tell your teen girl not to actually let it touch her vagina) and there is zero odor even after a HIIT workout in the garage gym in the middle of summer in the Lone Star State.
7. Consider 2 Showers a Day
Extreme heat calls for extreme measures, and that is two showers a day–one in the morning after sweating all night, and one in the evening to wash off the stanky day before climbing into bed. This is Texas we are talking about! I know your bank account is quaking by now, but just keep in mind that cooler weather will be here before we know it…hopefully…
8. Try a Scalp Scrub
Sweaty teens + trendy hair gels and products can produce smelly build-up that may be leaving your teen smelling a bit like a wet dog, especially with the summer heat only amplifying the intensity. Consider a scalp scrub to clarify and remove any smelly buildup. This is very similar to a body scrub but is applied using the pointy tip of the bottle’s applicator. I absolutely love the ones from Oribe and Coco & Eve, and for a super affordable option, try Ion by Sally Beauty for only $9.89.