Let’s be real: many of us just don’t naturally smell like mint and sunshine, and that’s fine. But if you’ve been in quarantine, then you may have noticed that you’re starting to smell different— whether it’s for better or for worse.
The microbes that live on us, after all, are what makes our bodies smell the way they do. With many of us physically distancing, our exposure to certain microbes has gone way down. In some cases, we even start smelling like the people we live with.
If you happen to be one of the unlucky ones who now find that smelling clean for a long time can be a challenge, you may be feeling a real hit to your self-esteem. But there are other major factors that are affecting the way you smell, and thankfully, you can do something about them:
You could be sweating more because of stress
Be it emotional or work-related, stress can make your body odor take a turn for the worse. Feeling nervous or agitated can cause you to sweat approximately 30 times more in the sweat glands that produce body odor—namely, the apocrine glands concentrated in your armpit and groin areas. When you produce more sweat from these particular glands, your funk can intensify or even become more pungent.
If you’ve been swamped with work and online meetings, it may be a good idea to start taking short breaks to stretch, relax, and take a few deep breaths. Talking to someone or playing calm music may also help.
Your body might be reacting to your food
When your body breaks down the compounds in the food that you eat, the smell can sometimes carry over. Garlic, onions, seafood, curry, and vegetables like asparagus and broccoli, for example, are known to affect your body odor (as well as your breath). Spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol can also cause you to sweat more in general.
But that doesn’t mean you should stop putting these things in your cart on the already-rare occasions you head out to the supermarket—it’s all about making sure you’re not having too much of these foods in your diet. Our personal chemistries all differ: build up to see how much your body can handle.
Your clothes could be trapping in the smell
We get it: There’s no one to impress at home, so it’s easy to just keep wearing the same t-shirt for days on end. But sweat and body odor can get trapped in clothing over time, so it’s important to wash them regularly. If you’re prone to sweating, it may be a good idea to change your clothes often, too. It might also be a good idea to start switching to clothes made from natural fabrics like cotton: studies have found that synthetic materials like polyester stink worse after you sweat in them.
You might not be cleaning deeply enough
The best way to get rid of bad body odor is, and always will be, good hygiene. That means showering at least once a day and making sure your grooming products have effective anti-bacterial properties that aid in cleansing and protecting your skin against sweat and odor-causing bacteria, all the while helping you make sure you smell fresh throughout the day.
The NIVEA MEN Deep Range of grooming essentials, for example, is powered by Black Carbon, a powerful antibacterial agent that helps provide deep cleansing and protection with regular use. You can cleanse with the NIVEA MEN Deep Facial Wash, Shower Gel, and Shampoo to thoroughly remove dirt and oil, leaving you feeling clean and smelling fresh.
Once you step out of the shower, make sure to towel off well. Dry skin is harder for the bacteria that causes body odor to breed. From there, use an antiperspirant like the NIVEA MEN Deep Deodorant, which helps provide reliable 48-hour protection from sweat and odor. It comes in three distinct and long-lasting fragrances: the original Dark Wood, classic Espresso, and Amazonia rainforest scents. These are available as sprays and roll-ons.
Smelling and feeling fresh begin with good hygiene and a reliable range of grooming essentials. You can try the new NIVEA MEN Deep Range without having to step out of the safety of your home by ordering online via Lazada and Shopee.