7 Ways to Guarantee Stress Sweat Won’t Ruin Your Clothes

Friends with arms in the air

The only thing worse than stress sweat is what it does to your clothes.

Our sweat contains urea, which is what causes those lovely yellow stains over time – leaving us to clamp our arms to the sides like an army cadet. And let’s not forget the white marks and the chunks of deodorant that cling to our favorite tops like… well, a really clingy person.

Here are 7 ways to make sure stress sweat doesn’t destroy your clothes:

1. Focus on fabric and fit.
When you’re shopping for new duds, become picky about the types of fabric you wear: Fabrics like cotton and other natural fibers will allow your skin to breathe and pull moisture away from your body.

Choose clothes that are a looser weave, and slightly looser fit. The tighter the weave, the hotter the clothes, and trust me – there’s nothing that will make you sweat more than a tight, long-sleeved shirt. You’ll obsess so much over sweating too much that you’ll sweat too much (I wish I was joking).

2. Buy cheap t-shirts.
Chunks of deodorant under the arms of your expensive sweaters is the worst. Purchase t-shirts specifically to wear underneath to hog the deodorant and soak up moisture.

3. Put deodorant on before bed.
When you apply your deodorant in the morning when your sweat volume is usually higher, it washes off. Put your deodorant on at night, which will give it time to go into and clog your sweat glands (which sounds gross-yet-wonderful, doesn’t it?).

4. Use underarm shields.
I haven’t tried these yet, but I’ve heard really good things about them. Disposable underarm shields protect your clothes from stains, odors and wet-thru. They work on all fabrics (including woolens), have an absorbent top-layer and waterproof back layer. I would also imagine that not worrying about sweating through your favorite top will also help you sweat less (cha-ching!).

5. To remove white deodorant stains…

  • Soak the deodorant stain with one part water and one part vinegar.
  • Let it dry.
  • Run it through a regular wash cycle.

6. To remove yellow stress sweat stains…

  • Mix four tablespoons of baking soda with a quarter-cup of warm water until it forms a paste.
  • Put a generous amount of paste on the stained area. Make sure it absorbs by rubbing your shirt together.
  • Let it sit for 30 minutes to one hour.
  • Run it through a regular wash cycle.

7. To remove pesky stress sweat stains…
If you’ve tried the above techniques with no luck, or you’ve been busy and have allowed the stains to stick around for a while:

  • Crush up plain aspirin – one aspirin per half cup of hot water. Dissolve the aspirin in the water.
  • Soak your tops in this for two to three hours.
  • Run them through a regular wash cycle.

How do you make sure stress sweat doesn’t ruin your clothing?

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Image: Randy Pagatpatan

Krissy Brady

Krissy Brady is a women’s health + lifestyle writer who’s so out of shape, it’s like she has the innards of an 80-year-old. Instead of learning how to crochet, she decided to turn her emotional baggage into a writing career (genius, no?). You can follow her shenanigans on Twitter (you know, if you want).