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reading tiger

1. Basque lamb stew for dinner, with meat on the bone and plenty of smoked paprika and piment d'Esplette and both fresh and bottled red bell peppers. Meat on the bone, people. This is like the definition of rustic cooking, or at least the definition that isn't "I'm too lazy to be fancy" (although I am that, too). I am doing this one all the dang time whenever there is cheap lamb to be hacked and stewed. Because oh yes, my friends, I broke out the meat cleaver for this one. And when I did, a great weight lifted from my shoulders and I thought, "I should do more physical labor, especially with my hands. This is kinda fun."

2. After a long, long break, my armpit problems have reappeared. I am now reduced to wearing the very hippiest of deodorants. I mean, not even crystals, those irritate my skin. It's roll-ons and little essential oil spritzes for me forever now.

3. TMI? I am the queen of TMI.



Happy to join you in TMI-landia. I have been a long-time deodorant abstainer, but when for whatever reason I feel like some kind of anti-whiff assistance would be advisable, I spritz with wintergreen alcohol. It appears to kill the bacteria that make armpits smell while leaving behind only the faintest minty odor. It does sting a little, just for a second or two, but then it works pretty well.

Further note, I have fairly luxuriant armpit hair. I'm not sure how fur/lack thereof would affect this method. I would probably not use it on freshly-shaved skin unless I was significantly more of a masochist than I happen to be, on account of ow.

I think I might like to avoid alcohol on account of sensitive skin, but maybe something wintergreeny or minty in a carrier oil might work. Thanks!
4. seems to be too little info, not too much.
It's tempting to claim I was intentionally meta here.
I'd be curious to know, if you care to elaborate, about the armpit problems. Both Fella and I have developed problems of our own and they are mysterious to us. I've backed off to deodorant but TJ's unscented "sensitive skin" did nothing to stop me smelling like a football team after a hot practice session, so last night I picked up Tom's of Maine at WF. No anti-perspirant in weeks, yet pits are still red and annoyed.
Every once in a while my left armpit stops sweating and the skin turns red. It's warm and dry to the touch but not irritated otherwise. Usually I just stop using anything on that pit until it goes away, and because I am not sweating I don't have to worry about body odor so much until it recovers.

I haven't used antiperspirant in years, although strangely that doesn't seem to affect this condition -- i.e. I often have better results from aluminum-laced extra-strength products than I do supposedly gentle sensitive skin products. Gels and sticks are bad, crystals are bad, TJs unscented sensitive skin is bad, Tom's of Maine is bad. Propylene glycol appears to be bad but it also appears not to be the only thing that is bad. Roll-ons are good, I haven't tried sprays. Scents seem to be OK but that sucks for other chemically sensitive people; I try to stick to not-too-obtrustive herbal oil stuff.

I would also consider switching up laundry detergents Just in Case. Sometimes that seems to make a difference pit-wise for me.
Thank you for this! I switched long ago to using either Dreft or 7th Generation's all-free detergent, as my skin rejected anything with perfumes over a decade back, but the pit thing is new.

Several weeks of nothing but Tom's of Maine apricot deodorant left me less itchy but VERY stinky on a regular basis. I'm cautiously trying an extra strength but for sensitive skin product now - I was using the extra strength from another brand that didn't have unscented, so maybe that was an issue... ugh. No idea why Fella and I got all itchy at the same time but I tossed our soap in case that was the problem.
FWIW, I finally figured out that a big factor in my armpit problems was from combinations of products. I.e., I could use a particular soap with no problem, ditto a deodorant, but the soap plus the deodorant = angry red rash. Dove sensitive skin soap has turned out to be good and non-triggering for me.

Yet I still had occasional problems. Eventually I figured out that I needed to make sure that when I washed my hair, that I didn't let the rinse from hair care products run down around my armpits. I.e. lean way over front or back and not let it wash straight down my body. My most recent revelation was realizing I needed to be similarly careful when washing off sunscreen -- d'oh, that's why I was having more problems in the summer when I was wearing tank tops and sunscreen!

When I do get a rash, I find that OTC hydrocortisone cream does a good job of calming it down, though I don't want to use that constantly, obviously. My current working combination is Dove sensitive skin soap, Crystal roll-on deodorant (the actual crystal was a no go), and being careful about runoff. I have a whole drawer full of both commercial and hippie deodorants that I've tried and an Excel spreadsheet of my results. I hope you manage to figure out your triggers!
Good to know, thanks for this! I got a prescription cream from my doctor but experimentation is obviously necessary. What a frustrating problem.