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Frequently Asked Questions

Sweat is natural and happens to all of us. It’s a mix of salt, water, proteins and oils that’s produced by over 3 million sweat glands all over your body. Sweating (also known as perspiration) is your body’s natural way of controlling and reducing your temperature. You actually sweat about a litre every day, but most of it evaporates, so you don’t notice. This sweat can increase to up to 10 litres a day if it’s really hot or you’re exercising hard.

You sweat to cool down. Perspiration lowers your body temperature as it evaporates – it’s your body’s natural way of maintaining your optimum temperature. However, other factors such as illness, hormones, the environment, exercise, adrenaline and stress can also cause you to sweat – sometimes profusely – or can trigger severe night sweats.

When we get sweaty, it’s from either two types of sweat glands on the skin: Apocrine – found mainly in the underarm area – and Eccrine glands, which are found all over the skin surface. Sweating is controlled by the body’s autonomic nervous system – the part of our nervous system which is under involuntary or ‘unconscious’ control.

Apocrine glands become active from puberty and are found mainly in the underarms. They produce sweat when we feel stress, pain or exercise. The sweat from apocrine glands that’s responsible for producing smelly sweat. Eccrine glands are the most abundant type of sweat gland, found all over the skin and start to function soon after birth, releasing a dilute salt solution made up of 99% water. It’s the Eccrine gland that’s responsible for the wet sensation of sweat. Sweat produced from the Eccrine glands are key in keeping the body cool by thermoregulation.

Surprisingly, sweat doesn’t actually smell. In fact, it’s completely odourless. We call the smell associated with sweat “body odour” (or BO) and it’s caused by the bacteria that lives on your skin. Your body is home to millions of harmless bacteria that thrive in moist, humid and nutrient-rich environments like your underarms, producing by-products that have a very distinctive smell. Smelly ‘sweat’ isn’t harmful to your health, but it can be a bit embarrassing. To help prevent sweaty body odour, ensure your underarms are clean and dry and use an antiperspirant regularly to keep you feeling (and smelling) fresh.

Sweating is healthy and normal. But it can be embarrassing and uncomfortable, too. While you can’t stop sweating completely, you can live by these useful tips to take back control of sweating and body odour:

  • Choose an effective antiperspirant that helps protect against wetness and body odour for up to 48 hours. Be sure to apply to your underarms every day.
  • Apply your deodorant or antiperspirant to skin that’s completely dry.
  • Apply your deodorant or antiperspirant to clean, dry skin at night to help protect against the effect of night sweats.
  • Steer clear of skin-tight clothing so that your skin and pores can breathe. Ventilation between lightweight loose layers will help you stay cool and fresh, both day and night.
  • Shower straight after exercise and make sure you dry yourself thoroughly after showering, as bacteria thrive in damp conditions.
  • Know what triggers your sweat. Alcohol, spicy food, stress and can trigger heavy sweating so try to avoid or minimise these.

Antiperspirants help to control sweat and body odour by using aluminum salts, the active ingredient found in antiperspirants, which dissolve into the moisture on your skin. This then forms a gel, which temporarily (and safely) sits on top of the sweat gland, limiting the amount of sweat that’s released. This ‘stopper’ provides enhanced odour control and reduces unpleasant underarm wetness. A good antiperspirant like Degree will leave you feeling fresh, dry and confident to keep moving.

Antiperspirants and deodorants are actually two different products with different purposes. Knowing the difference is key to finding the protection you need. Antiperspirants help prevent sweat reaching the skin’s surface and protects from body odour so that you feel fresh and dry, whereas deodorants and body sprays control body odour with fragrances rather than actually reducing the amount you sweat.

Yes, antiperspirants and deodorants are proven to be completely safe to use. A go-to hero for millions of people every single day, antiperspirant and deodorant formulas are extensively evaluated on a regular basis. Many people choose to use natural deodorant, unscented deodorant or aluminum-free deodorant. Like every personal care product, it’s all about choosing what’s best for you and your lifestyle.

You can generally apply deodorant after shaving, unless your skin is broken. Steer clear of applying any product to broken skin that might cause irritation.

Some people find that applying deodorant after shaving can sting a little – it’s usually due to the fragrance or alcohol in the formula. To help avoid a stinging sensation, go for an unscented deodorant or one that’s alcohol-free. 

First things first. Antiperspirants are activated by aluminum salts to help reduce the flow of sweat, while deodorants mask the smell of sweat using fragrance. Whichever your choice, both are generally safe to use. Sweat mildly or hardly at all? You probably don’t need to use aluminum-infused protection, so go for aluminum-free deodorant. Sweat heavily every day? Go for a strong antiperspirant. It’s all about choosing the right deodorant or antiperspirant for you.

Whether you choose natural deodorant, antiperspirant or aluminum-free deodorant, it’s a matter of personal preference. Aluminum-free deodorants help to reduce body odour, but antiperspirants have the added benefit of helping to control the flow of sweat to reduce underarm wetness.