Your sweaty situations solved

Sweating. It’s not something that we talk about often, even though it’s something that affects most of us on a daily basis.

In a recent South African survey, 56% of South Africans admitted to sweating heavily. Another 78% said that they need to re-apply deodorant during the day, and more than half get sweat stains on their clothing.

So now that you know you’re not the only one who carries your deo around in your handbag, you might want to find out why we sweat, and what it actually is.

Why do we sweat?
People sweat to regulate their body temperature – it’s the body’s natural way of cooling itself down.

Types of sweat
Thermal sweating: Think of what you look like after a long run or game of tennis. That’s your body regulating its temperature by heat loss through evaporation.

Emotional sweating: Got a big exam tomorrow? Or maybe you’re going on a date. The perspiration you’re experiencing is initiated by stress, anxiety or excitement and your body preparing itself for a fight or flight reaction.

Hereditary sweating: Sweaty palms? Blame your parents.

Hormonal sweating: Menopause or pregnancy can also cause you to perspire.

Gustatory sweating: Those beads of sweat that form when you’re eating a hot curry or drinking a tad too much.

The difference between normal and excessive sweating
Determining what kind of perspiration you experience will help you combat it.

If you find yourself sweating when you’re not doing anything particularly active or stressful, you might be suffering from hyperhidrosis.

This medical condition affects about 3% of the globe and is basically due to the inability of the body to thermoregulate. It can affect anything from your armpits to the soles of your feet and even your scalp.

If you think this is what you have, a doctor will be able to help you with treatment.

Antiperspirants vs. Deodorants
Simply spraying a nice smelling spray under your arms really won’t help with the wet patches. It only masks the smell...for a while.

Antiperspirant deodorants reduce sweat by controlling the flow of underarm perspiration and therefore stopping body odour. Think of products like Dove Antiperspirant and Mitchum. Shield’s new Clinical Protection – which is applied at night is a great new product on the market. With Trisolid technology, it acclimatises to the body by forming a protective network across sweat glands and a deep layer of protection.

Deodorants, on the other hand, prevent odour by using fragrance to mask bad body odour. These are products like Hoity Toity spray or Impulse, for example.

Is it safe to stop underarm sweating?
Luckily only 1% of our sweat glands are found under our underarms. Which means that an antiperspirant won’t affect your body’s overall ability to regulate its temperature and cool itself down. 

Antiperspirants dissolve in sweat to produce a thin coating on the skin that reduces underarm sweat temporarily, but doesn’t alter the body’s release of sweat to cool itself down to any significant degree.

Information supplied by Shield Clinical Protection. For more info, go to

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