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Hot Ball Summer: The Effectiveness of Putting Deodorant on Your Balls

Sometimes, it’s better to sweat your balls off than to burn them with chemicals

It’s been so hot this summer that I’ve seriously considered putting antiperspirant on my face just to try to put a dent into the quantity of sweat my face produces. But I imagine it’s a lot worse for guys. Facial sweat is probably the least of their summer concerns, especially when they have a precious sack of genetics burning up in their pants. I mean, the phrase “sweating your balls off” must exist for a reason.

So, reasonably, some might wonder if it’s safe to put deodorant or antiperspirant on their testicles.

As for whether that’s a good idea or not, first off, it’s important to note that deodorant and antiperspirant are two separate things, though they might be referred to interchangeably. Deodorant covers up body odors, but it doesn’t stop you from sweating. Antiperspirant, on the other hand, typically uses aluminum compounds to block pores and prevent you from spewing hot bodily sweat-ooze all over.

“Antiperspirants are basically aluminum chlorohydrate,” says Edward Zimmerman, a cosmetic surgeon who specializes in men’s health and is also known as the infamous @DickDocOnTikTok. “The majority of these are used under [our] arms, but they can be used most anywhere in the body.” In fact, per Zimmerman, it’s even safe to use antiperspirant on your genital region “within reason.”

Still, it can be irritating for some. “It’s not the aluminum chlorohydrate that’s the issue,” he continues. “It’s some of the bonding agents that might be in it, or if it has an alcohol base — that would sting or be an irritant.”

Somewhat tellingly, people are always talking about how much this hurts:

The most common culprit seems to be spray antiperspirants or deodorants — people prefer these on their balls as it gives them easier access to the region and doesn’t require cross-contaminating the stick you put on your armpits. But while it might seem like a good solution, spray deodorant/antiperspirant is actually not a great idea for your balls because it contains that damned alcohol Zimmerman mentioned. Many people also shave their genital region. Ever got alcohol in a cut before? Now imagine that on your balls.

“I just sprayed deodorant on my balls out of curiosity. It hurt like a bitch. Why?” one user wrote on r/NoStupidQuestions. As the commenters explained, alcohol was likely the culprit. While your armpits might be able to handle it, the epidermis there is far less sensitive than your scrotal skin.

Even deodorants and antiperspirants without alcohol can irritate the region. Again, your junk skin is pretty delicate, and most deodorants and antiperspirants aren’t made for that part of the body. As such, the fragrances and chemicals within them could potentially lead to a rash. Sure, swamp ass is bad, but swamp ass with a rash is way, way worse.

Thankfully, there are a handful of products out there designed with ball sweat and thin scrotal skin in mind. You might be somewhat safer giving one of them a try before your usual antiperspirant.

Alternatively, though, you can just accept the stank and shower more often. Unlike your armpits, you’re probably not exposing your ball smell to innocent strangers on public transit, so who really cares if you come home at the end of the day and aren’t fresh as a daisy? Regularly soaping up your balls should help keep things at bay.

All that said, plenty of dudes on Twitter report success in spraying deodorant or antiperspirant in their pants without rash or injury, and Zimmerman does say it’s safe enough. Maybe you’ll be like them. Maybe you’ll ruin your day. Up to you!