These days, sexual opportunities can arise quicker than ever before — often just a prompt swipe right and/or a brief Uber ride away. The only real drawback to this new brave new world? There’s not always the time for a shower, or even some brisk grooming maintenance beforehand. (Let alone the opportunity to break out the baking powder as Tiffany Haddish has suggested.) And that can leave you with a not-so-fresh feeling down below. After all, you don’t want to be this dude, as MEL columnist merritt k recounted in her post on smelly dicks:
“Berlin, a Canadian sex worker, says she could smell one particular partner’s penis from the moment he took off his pants, before ‘nearly gagging’ when his boxers followed. ‘I pulled back his foreskin, and it was full of what looked like dried cottage cheese,’ she adds. ‘I was so grossed out I could barely croak out the words ‘get in the shower now.’ Post-shower, though, the smell still lingered, and she had to use a condom, something she says she rarely does. ‘This was a paid thing,’ she clarifies, ‘or I’d have just thrown him out.’”
So what’s a guy to do in a pinch when his impromptu “dick appointment” awaits, but his nether regions are in need of some sprucing up? For professional advice, I turned to a veteran porn star, a urologist and a sex worker to get their thoughts on how to spontaneously (and swiftly) get hygienic when a “quickie” calls. Here’s what they had to say…
Stay Ready At All Times By Washing Up Whenever You Go to the Bathroom
“I like it clean, but not too clean,” says veteran porn star Steve Holmes. “I shower in the morning, I wash my dick and asshole after I piss or shit and I put a little cologne on my wrists and behind the ears. That’s it! I like to smell my partners natural odor, and I want them to smell me — not some fragrance from the store, especially between the legs.”
Make Cleaning Up Part of Foreplay, And Keep Baby Wipes Handy
“Think about starting your foreplay — even if it’s just a quickie — in the shower. It’s the best way to be squeaky clean before you do the ‘dirty,’” says urologist Jamin Brahmbhatt. “Spraying cologne or body spray may make you smell good, but if you’re not used to putting it on your private parts, it may cause irritation, a rash or burning. Also, if you plan on having oral sex, the residue from the spray or cologne may not be well liked by your partner. Instead, keep a package of baby wipes on you. If they’re good enough for a baby, they’re probably good enough for you. There are companies that sell ‘man wipes,’ which are similar in concept, but packaged ‘for men’ and cost more money.
“There’s no ‘normal’ amount of odor for one to have down there. We all have smells, some more than others. For men, it’s important to keep your private parts dry. The area around your genitals is similar to your armpits where natural bacteria live. When the area is damp and warm, it can attract more bugs. So the best way to avoid a bad odor is to manscape, stay dry, wear loose clothing preferably made from cotton, shower more often and avoid diets high in onion, garlic and spices, which can permeate through your pores.”
Paper Towels, Water and Essential Oils Are More of A Friend Than Soap and Toilet Paper
“I call this a ‘whore’s bath,’ which is maybe not politically correct, but the term resonates with me,” says Alexis Blair Penney, a writer, artist and former “punk prostitute.” “I tend to carry baby wipes with me just in case of this possible event. I never know when I might get a rim job, so I always wanna be prepared. When I find myself without them, I will wet my hands and clean my ass in the sink, then wash my hands and dry them off with paper towels. It’s a really bad idea to try doing this with toilet paper, because it always shreds into little piles. Paper towels tend to stay intact. Or just air dry.”
“Aggressive soaps tend to make the body secrete more oil and hormones to compensate for the drying, so I find that water and a towel works the best,” Penney continues. “I also carry little spritz bottles of essential oils, which tend to be more subtle and blend more naturally with our scents. You can mix them with carrier oils like almond or grape seed. A little alcohol and water works well too. They tend to be cheaper than other scents in the long run anyway.
“Personally, I don’t appreciate partners who smell strongly of chemicals. It always feels off to me energetically. If you not only don’t like your own body’s smells, but also have never had a relationship to them, you may be missing out on vital feedback and information from your body about the effects of your actions! In fact, I consider myself an educator in terms of owning the messiness, smell and general body-ness of my body. We shit, fart, sweat and secrete hormones as part of the healthy, normal functioning of the human body. When we interrupt these processes too strongly, it can create illness and pathology. So we need to grow up a little around these issues.
“That said, I’ll still wash my ass in the sink at Whole Foods because I do want my body to seem cared for and appreciated!”