How to Prevent Sweat Stains

Let me get straight to the point: I’ve suffered from hyperhidrosis ever since I was a teenager. In plain words, I would sweat so much that I would stink only after a few hours of being awakened – even if I had done no physical effort. Armpit odor shattered my self-esteem while the pit stains ruined my t-shirts at an alarming speed.

The worst thing is that people around me didn’t seem to get how self-conscious I was about my underarm sweat. I was dismissively told that it would go away with teenagehood. Newsflash: it didn’t. I was also given generic advice such as trying different deodorants, taking multiple showers or layering several t-shirts. None of it proved useful.

As such, at the beginning of adulthood, I went on a quest to conquer my hyperhidrosis. I’ve tried many solutions such as Drysol, SweatBlock, Dri roll, Dermadry, hypnosis, underarm sweat pads, homeopathy, shaving my underarms, meditation, isopropyl alcohol, etc. Many were useless and a few gave me some relief, although none really gave me freedom on their own. In the end, my remaining options consisted of injecting botox into my underarms, burning my sweat glands through microwave therapy or taking medication like nerve-blocking pills or antidepressants. This was out of the question for me.

In the end, I’ve never managed to cure my hyperhidrosis. However, through trial-and-error, I’ve developed a morning routine that manages my hyperhidrosis so well that I barely think about underarm odor or sweat stains. In that sense, I’ve managed to find true freedom and this is what I’m offering you, right here, right now. Follow my instructions and it might just change your life.

What you need

First, you will need the following household items:

  • 99% isopropyl alcohol
  • Your favorite deodorant
  • Cotton pads or balls
  • A hand or paper towel

Then, you will need the following product:

PURAX pads are sweat pads that you apply not on your clothes, but on your underarms directly. This slight tweak on traditional sweat pads makes a world of difference. It also means you will need to shave your underarms and keep them clear of hair at all times. This will allow the PURAX pads to properly stick to your underarms; and as a bonus, it will reduce armpit smell. To me, these are the best underarm sweat pads.

Once you have all the required items, you will be able to follow my routine.

My morning routine

In the morning, after you have taken your shower, do the following steps:

  1. Apply the isopropyl alcohol onto a cotton pad or ball and rub it on your underarms. This will completely remove your armpit odor in a way that mere soap can’t. Then, dry your underarms by using your hand or paper towel.

  2. Apply your favorite deodorant. Try as much as possible to avoid the area where the adhesive of the PURAX pads will be. This takes practice and you likely won’t get it on the first time. Use your hand or paper towel to make this area as bone-dry as you can; if it’s too moist, the pads won’t stick.

  3. Finally, apply the adhesive of the PURAX pads onto the bone-dry area of your underarms. Press on the adhesive for at least 15 seconds to make sure it sticks correctly.

I’ve got to be honest – you are unlikely to get this routine right the first time. It does take some practice. The biggest obstacle you will encounter is making sure that the area where you put the adhesive is bone-dry. In that regard, you might prefer putting the deodorant directly onto the PURAX pads, although it might give you less protection against underarm odor. Tweak my routine so that it fits your needs.

At the end of the day

Once you’ve mastered the morning routine, you might find that the PURAX pads stick so well that it hurts to remove them. Personally, I suck it up and rip them off. If that’s not your cup of tea, massaging your underarms with baby oil will make the removal much easier.

The PURAX pads might also leave a residue or darken the area where the adhesive is. I haven’t found a solution to this; I accept it as a minor inconvenience for freedom.