You’re probably putting on deodorant the wrong way

Kai Ryssdal Aug 9, 2016
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Miley Cyrus applies AXE deodorant backstage at Z100's Jingle Ball 2013. Brad Barket/Getty Images for Clear Channel

You’re probably putting on deodorant the wrong way

Kai Ryssdal Aug 9, 2016
Miley Cyrus applies AXE deodorant backstage at Z100's Jingle Ball 2013. Brad Barket/Getty Images for Clear Channel
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This year is already on track to be one of the hottest on record, and with all the heat comes the inevitable sweat, which begs the question: is your deodorant working?  

Studies show that some people are reapplying several times a day. The industry, naturally, is booming sales for deodorant and antiperspirant rose to almost $4.3 billion last year, up more than seven percent from the prior year.

We spoke to Elizabeth Holmes of the Wall Street Journal, who wrote about trends in deodorant use.

On finding the right deodorant:

A lot of people don’t realize that there’s a difference. Men tend to prefer deodorant, which is about odor. So it tackles the glands that are making you smell. And antiperspirant is about wetness, or the water glands. And a lot of women prefer antiperspirants because they don’t want to feel any wetness under their arms.

On shifting trends in deodorant use:

Deodorant used to be what’s called a low-involvement product category, so it was sort of a set it and forget it. A lot of people just buy the same product over and over, and what we’re saying is deodorant is having a little bit of a moment. People are thinking about it more and talking about it more, and are willing to spend more. What’s really interesting to me here is people are wardrobing, which is they’re buying different deodorants for different occasions.    

Holmes on the right way to put on deodorant:

We’re all doing it wrong. I talked to a top dermatologist who said antiperspirants are most effective when you’re sweating the least, and that’s usually just before bed, which is sort of a weird time to put on antiperspirant. But, he recommends that. And then in the morning, when you shower, it’ll rinse off sort of what’s on the surface but it won’t change its effectiveness. And if you’re worried about odor you can apply a deodorant in the morning.        

 

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