Odaban Antiperspirant Spray, £10.49
This is the best-kept secret among dermatologists, pharmacists and doctors and has been recommended to those who need a little extra sweat protection, for years. Helpfully, you don’t actually need a prescription – in fact, you can find it online at Boots. The best part is – if the countless five-star reviews online are to be believed – it’ll keep your pits bone dry in the sweatiest of situations.
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Elle Turner, Deputy Beauty Editor
I wouldn’t say I’m a mega sweater. I’d say I sweat a normal amount. Except when I’m nervous (cue: job interviews, work presentations, first dates, meeting the parents, etc) and then all bets are off. Throw in a heatwave, like the one we had recently, and like the rest of the UK, I was 90% moisture. Although I don’t need a hardcore deodorant day-in-day-out, it’s definitely a hero to have in my back pocket (or more specifically, my bathroom cabinet), so I put this one to the test during the hottest day of the year and through a few nervy situations since then.
Bath & Body
*This* is the deodorant hack to rescue your pits next time you forget to pack antiperspirant
The first nugget of wisdom I’d like to impart before anyone tries this, is read the instructions! And, stick to them. Unlike your regular antiperspirant, this needs to be spritzed on last thing at night, to clean, (completely) dry skin in order to allow it the proper time to sink in and work its magic. You wash it off in the morning and you’re all set to go, no top-up needed.
When I say you only need one spritz, I mean it. This stuff smells positively lethal (quite chemical-y) and unless you’ve got the lung capacity to rival Pavarotti, you don’t want to be breathing too much of it in. Also, (disclaimer) it stings like hell if you overdo it, though you can apply it from a cotton pad if your skin is sensitive. However, because of its ultra high strength, it’s recommended that you only apply it a couple of times a week, since each spritz is enough to see you through several days.
I’ll admit, the chemical part does seem off-putting (it’s about as far away from natural body care as you can get), but the results are worth it. I kid you not, this took on the heatwave and almost, *almost* won. My pits had a hint of moisture, nothing more. Nowhere near as much as I’d have expected from the record-breaking temperature. Ditto, work events that normally make me clam up. I sailed through, desert dry. Psychologically too, wearing this made me feel more secure. I knew when I had it on, that I wouldn't need to worry about unwanted sweating. And that, in turn, made me feel calmer.
The golden question is, how does it work? Essentially, the combination of its active ingredient, aluminium chloride, with your own skin protein, creates a poral 'plus'. This partially blocks the sweat gland and 're-routes the perspiration to the blood capillaries where it is transported to areas of the skin from which evaporation can take place more easily, or to the kidneys for excretion,” according to the instructions. Sounds like it’s going to spring up somewhere else, right? Not so. In fact, tests have shown that “the net result is to leave the treated skin area dry without compensatory sweating elsewhere on the body.”
Speaking of – it turns out, this isn’t just a solution for your armpits. So, if you’re a foot sweater, a hand sweater, a face sweater, a back-of-the knee sweater or a plain old back sweater, you can use this there, too, apparently.
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While I wouldn’t want to wear this all the time (I just don’t need the ultra high strength on a regular basis and would rather forgo the chemicals), for someone who suffers daily with excess sweat, I’d fully recommend it. For others who need an extra bit of help occasionally (whether you’re attending a meeting, a wedding or heading into a particularly hot day), this stuff is bulletproof. It's a huge thumbs up from me.