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It’s Time To Stop Penalizing People Who Sweat (A Lot)

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Western chapter.

When I was younger, I didn’t sweat very much, but now it seems as though it’s all I ever do.

I don’t sweat because I’m super fit and work out all the time (I wish). To be honest, I think my excessive sweating is on account of my social anxiety, like a lot of other people. Even if it’s cold in a building if I’m surrounded by a lot of people or maybe a few other people I’m not particularly comfortable with, the armpits of my shirt dampen and begin to smell. Unfortunately, it’s just not something I can control; however, it seems to be something I’m penalized for by places like Walmart or Shopper’s Drug Mart.

Buying deodorant is a painful transaction. Because I’m prone to sweating excessively, I have to purchase “clinical” deodorant in order to control the sweating and odour. The other day, I had to pay $11.00 for one stick of deodorant—just over double the price of a regular Lady Speed Stick or Dove. Not only was I appalled at the price and the fact that one hour of work paid for this one stick of deodorant, but I was also pissed off that because I sweat more than the average person, I had to pay double the price.



Firstly, it’s not my fault that I’m prone to sweating—it’s something that I can’t physically control. Secondly, why in the hell does it cost $11.00 to buy one stick of deodorant? In my opinion, deodorant is a necessity, and everyone should have access to it, even if they need something stronger in order for it to work properly. Even a standard stick of deodorant can be pricey; it’s as though we’re encouraged to not worry about personal hygiene.

Sweating can also be a legitimate physical issue. I know of people who have to buy special products like Drysol in order to control excessive sweating—for the price of $35.00 a bottle. It’s not okay for stores to capitalize on people’s sweating tendencies, and it certainly isn’t okay to make people feel embarrassed or ashamed of their situation by reminding them (particularly through inflated price points) that they need extra help. It’s not like we are buying stronger antiperspirants because they have a cuter container or are considered a high-class brand—we purchase them because it is the only thing that works effectively.

I don’t know about others, but when I’m sweating or if I can smell a bad odour coming from my underarms, I can’t concentrate on anything else: it’s all I can think about. I’m constantly wondering if people can smell me or if they notice that I’m sweating through my shirt, which only heightens my social anxiety, resulting in more sweating. It’s a vicious cycle, which I can escape when I wear a clinical product. I just hope that one day the government will come to realize just how ridiculous their prices on necessities have become and cut some of us some slack: after all, we can’t control our body’s production of sweat and we shouldn’t be penalized for not being able to do so.

Chapter Advisor for Her Campus and Junior Editor/Writer for Her Campus at Western. You can typically find me in the world of English literature.
This is the contributor account for Her Campus Western.