Thursday, March 6, 2008

Today's Topic: Armpits

I'm having trouble finding the right words to segue into this topic. It's awkward. Armpits are intimate territory and most of us would rather pay as little attention to them as possible. Especially other peoples'.

Around ten years ago, I had to start paying attention to my armpits. Commercial antiperspirants and deoderants were triggering serious health problems, including cysts so sore that one day I called my doctor in tears from a public phone booth, unable to bear the pain. I had to come up with another solution to the armpit problem.

One at a time, I bought all the different brands of natural deoderants. They all had approximately the same effectiveness, which is to say, nearly none. They cost twice as much as the commercial brands, and I still had stinky pits by the end of the day. Situation: unacceptable!

I finally tried the last and most expensive option on the health food store's shelves: a zinc-based cream deoderant called Lavilin. A half-ounce pot set me back $20. For that price, it had better work!

The instructions stated that I was not permitted to apply any other product to my pits for 3 whole days before the first application. Oh, great. Would the Lavilin people mind writing a letter of explanation for me to hand out to my friends, family, co-workers, and customers? Because, I'm fastidious. The prospect of walking around in public with full-on B.O. for 3 days was painful.

In the end I handled it the old-fashioned way: I half-stripped and washed in the sink with soap and water several times each day. I was working in a store that had a 1-person bathroom. Thank God for privacy.

Results of the experiment: 100% success! Lavilin (I swear no one is paying me to write this) keeps away pit-stink for at least a week after each application. It goes on at bedtime and washes off in the morning shower. Then I don't even think about it for another seven days.

The $20 pot lasts for several months, so on a per-serving basis, it's not terribly dear. And fortunately for me, I don't sweat buckets, so the fact that it's not an antiperspirant isn't a big worry.

If someone gave you a free pot of Lavilin tomorrow, would you give it a try?


Nicey said...

Can't believe that you sweat, you girls perspire and it smells of roses !!

whatigotsofar said...

I'm not sure if I would give it a try. I'm quite pleased with my current armpit hygeine product. Sure, it does NOT deliver on its promise to make me irrestible to women, even with the added bwaw-chica-bwaw-wah. But I do like the smell and the ease of application.

jameil1922 said...

i guess. you're right there is no fun to be had when talk of pits is in the air.

Aurora said...

I'd be willing to try it. I'd also be worried that something "so strong" would be dangerous somehow. Just my natural suspicious mind kicking in... I trust your judgment!

unsigned said...

Regular stuff works fine for me.

PixieVonAzia said...

hmm maybe if I had really bad BO..and If I was definetly worried about deooderants casing health problems. But mines works ok and not having health issues yet.. =)

Warped Mind of Ron said...

I use regular old deoderant and seems to work for me or at least I havent seen people getting sick and puking when I raise my arms :) But you know life is about trying new things so If some just showed up I would probably give it a try.

Sparkling Red said...

Nicey: Uh, yeah, sure, roses. I don't know why I insist on covering up that sweet smell!

WhatIgotsofar: I don't like cologne much - it's usually too strong. But I do like a scented deoderant on my guy. It might not make you irresistible to all women, but there will be a few who'll appreciate it.

Jameil: Never fear. I'm guessing that this post has exhausted the topic of armpits. I don't plan to post on the subject again for some time.

Aurora: I don't find it strong in any way, just very effective. Something in the formula inhibits bacterial growth, but it doesn't affect humans in any direct way. It doesn't sting or have any smell at all. The worst side effect is: if you apply it too often is that it can build up and itch a bit.

Unsigned: If it ain't broke, don't fix it. ;-)

Pixie Von Azia: It is more convenient not to have to go out of your way to a health food store just to pick up the special stuff.

Ron: It's good to know that you are practicing responsible pit maintenance. It's all part of being a productive member of society. :-)

Keera Ann Fox said...

Oh, sure, I'd try it. I'm also curious about the deodorizing ability of baking soda. Just wanna use up all the regular deos/anti-perspirants I already have first before I experiment. That'll take a while. Can't say I'm brave enough to trust apple cider vinegar as a regular, though it'll see you through 8 hours if you don't actually sweat. I use it to maintain skin health. It has the right pH for pits and that other place on the body that has hair in order to spread odor. Whadya mean, TMI? That's not possible!

R.E.H. said...

That's interesting. I got a rash from my deodorant a couple of years back. Never had a problem with it... but I think it was stress induced (it was right after my father passed away).

It lasted for about 2-3 weeks, and ever since - no problem with my anti-perspirants.

San said...

Where do I sign, Red? Where do I sign?

whatigotsofar said...

I've had stag party hostesses tell me I smell great but I don't really trust their opinion. They often reek of sweat and other men.

Jenski said...

Interesting...I'd give it a try.

I've also heard of people having botox injections in their armpits to treat over-active sweat glands.

Karen said...

I do sweat. So I don't know if it would work for me. My poor baby sister sweats so much she actually had botox in her pits. I am not that bad.

Sparkling Red said...

Keera: Apple cider vinegar, eh? Is there anything that stuff can't cure? It's a miracle elixir!
As for TMI, I've worked a lot in the field of health care, so I have to remind myself that not everyone is comfortable with all the body stuff I'm used to. Almost nothing is TMI by my standards.

R.E.H.: The body is a marvelous and sensitive thing. You can never tell how it's going to react to stress. Sometimes it seems so random. Good thing the rash was only temporary.

San: Right here on the dotted line..................

WhatIgotsofar: Are you telling me I shouldn't count the compliments I've gotten from stag party hostesses? You're questioning their judgement? This changes everything.

Jenski: I've heard of that too. The thought of getting an injection in my armpit makes me lightheaded. Good thing I don't sweat that much.

Karen: Man, that's tough for your sister. At least Botox is available now. I guess in the past some people just dripped sweat all the time. That's got to be very uncomfortable and embarrassing.

Nicole said...

I do sweat a lot, but luckily it's not the stinky sort.
Even during the summer heat here with 50 Celsius.

If I would, I would give it a try though.
Because I do use Anti smell stuff when I go somewhere and some of it leaves stains :(
Or like in Korea you could only get those weird American roller things for a decent price.
Spray bottles on the economy where up to 8 Dollars in a tiny bottle (go figure why many Koreans still smell like a Garlic factory or worse ;) )

I know that my Mom tried something once, very expensive too, but it worked. Don't know if she still uses it or what brand it was.

Angry Lab Rat said...

Yeah, sure, I'd try it. I'm all into stink, seeing as how I have to use the sport-strength version deodorants!