Sweat, Oil, Makeup, and Prosthetics.

Trans people, crossdressers, sissies, or anyone who uses makeup and prosthetics are likely to have sweat issues. Sweat and oil make our makeup run and dissolves the glue that holds our prosthetics in place. It's also unpleasant. Here are some ways to cope with it.

Deodorants or Antiperspirants?

Let's get the odor issue out of the way first. Sweat is sterile and odorless. It is mostly water but contains small amounts of proteins. The bacteria already living on your skin break down these proteins, and that's what creates the infamous "body odor." The famously odiferous areas of your body (armpits and genitals) have different sweat glands than the rest of your body. These glands secret thicker sweat with a higher percentage of proteins.

Deodorants don't inhibit sweat. Their single function is to deal with the odor. Typically they contain something (like alcohol) that will kill bacteria and perhaps some fragrance that will (hopefully) mask any existing odor. But to keep your makeup from running and your boobs from falling off, you need an antiperspirant.

How Antiperspirants Work.

The antiperspirants you apply to the surface of your skin are dissolved by sweat. The dissolved antiperspirant moves into the pores and solidifies, forming plugs just below the skin's surface. The human body senses which pores are plugged and stops the connected glands from sweating. The plugs can stay in place for up to 24 hours but will eventually wash away. Oil comes from hair follicles, not from pores. Still, many people with oily skin find that antiperspirants also help them control their skin's oil production.

Which Antiperspirant?

You can buy antiperspirants over-the-counter (OTC). If those don't work, you can get a prescription for a stronger one from your doctor. Antiperspirants can cause skin irritation, so most people try the weakest formulas first. If those don't work, they try more potent formulations until they find one that does. Do that if you wish, but most people don't glue silicon to their bodies. Since you're probably reading this because you already have sweat issues related to makeup and prosthetics, I'd suggest saving time by starting at least with a medium strength antiperspirant.

You can purchase "Regular Strength" or "Clinical Strength" OTC antiperspirants. The most common active ingredient in antiperspirants is metallic salts. The clinical strength versions contain more of this ingredient, usually up to 13%. Prescription antiperspirants have similar concentrations of more effective salts. A common one is aluminum chloride hexahydrate, which is very effective but frequently very irritating to the skin. Higher concentrations may also be available


Application Tips

You aren't going to use antiperspirant if it irritates your skin, so that should be your first concern. To minimize the risk of irritation, only apply antiperspirant to completely dry skin.

To increase the antiperspirant's effectiveness, apply it in the evening, just before you go to bed. It's also helpful to reapply in the morning, but the evening application is the most important one.

Recommended Antiperspirants

For facial antiperspirants, I highly recommend Mehron's "Skin Prep." I use it myself and also have some anecdotal evidence to share. A good friend of mine has never been able to make her makeup last more than an hour. The problem in her case is super oily skin more than sweat. Applying "Skin Prep" the night before has allowed her to wear her makeup for an entire day, up to 11 hours. That's a first for her. We have tried several different products on her, but none of them worked as well as "Skin Prep." Looking over the reviews of "Skin Prep" on various websites, it's clear that "Skin Prep" doesn't work for everyone with oily skin. But her experience is not unique - many people with oily skin or heavy perspiration have had similar happy outcomes. But not everyone. It's not clear why it works for some people and not for others.

For breast forms, I recommend "Certain Dri Roll On." At 12% Aluminum Chloride, it contains the maximum amount of metallic salts allowed by law for an OTC formulation. Don't just put it under your arms. Apply it everywhere the forms will touch. As always, the most successful outcome will begin with an application the evening before you need to wear the forms and then, once more, in the morning.

When it is time to wear the breast forms, apply silicon adhesive to the form's edges, and let it dry thoroughly. Then, immediately before attaching the breast form, clean your skin with isopropyl alcohol. Let the alcohol evaporate, then coat your skin with zinc oxide powder. Zinc oxide is the same stuff that turns high concentration sunscreens white. It forms an excellent base for the adhesive, and it's safe and inexpensive. Then apply the breast forms.

If you also use padding on your butts or hips (or both), sweating can be an issue. I've never heard of anyone using adhesive but it's common to use shapewear to hold them in place. The combination of shapewear and silicon or foam can encourage a lot of sweat, which won't look nice on your clothes. No need for zinc oxide here but feel free to apply antiperspirant to any area that needs it.

Are Antiperspirants Safe?

Every few years, someone gets concerned about antiperspirants. Most of the worries are about the aluminum salts used in most of the products. During the 1960s and 1970s, aluminum emerged as a possible cause of Alzheimer's. After many years of study, no one has confirmed this. Very few people believe that antiperspirants (or other sources of aluminum) cause Alzheimer's.

If you are one of those who are worried, then avoid them by all means.

Antiperspirants not Working?

If even the strongest antiperspirants are not working for you, you might have hyperhidrosis. Sweat glands respond to nerve stimulation caused by heat, hormones, emotions, or physical activity. Some people have primary hyperhidrosis, which means their sweat glands overreact to stimulus. Medications that can also cause excessive sweating, that's called "secondary hyperhidrosis". This will resolve once you stop the medication.

There is currently no cure for hyperhidrosis, but there are effective treatments. If you suffer from it there is no reason to just "put up with it." I suggest you consult a physician.

That's it. I hope this helps you stay high and dry for hours in your gorgeous outfits and makeup. . If you have comments, send the nice ones to me. To do that, you can