Not all plus-size women have big boobs, but I do. In fact, I had big boobs when I wasn't categorically plus-size (just as many slender women do, as well). "Big-boobed" is just one of my inherent characteristics, it would seem. And while the media may tell us that big boobs are luxurious and glamorous, they are also a pain in the neck (literally and figuratively). Big boobs come with big problems — expensive bras, back pain, pulled buttons, a need for multiple sports bras and boob sweat. And the thing is, underboob sweat is real, and it's the worst. Luckily, there is a solution.
If you don't experience this joy, I am here to tell you that boob sweat is worse than it seems. Sure, it's marginally embarrassing to workout in a gym full of people with those damp cheshire cat smiles highlighting your breasts. And yes, it's equally uncomfortable to feel the need to somehow wipe away the dampness in your cleavage without getting caught. But this is just the tip of the iceberg.
The real struggle with boob sweat is the rashes and the smells. Think about it — these are deep, dark, moist crevasses. These are breeding grounds; petri dishes. This is your armpit — only you've glued your boobs to your chest with the best support you can find so there is no escape. Moisture builds up, bacteria multiplies and heat rash ensues. Clearly, this is not the everyday understanding that big boobs always equal sex appeal.
In response to this misery, the beauty industry has come up with solutions for sweaty boobs — but as far as I'm concerned, most of them are simply not helpful. (Spoiler alert: If you're only here reading because you're interested in solving your own boob sweat issues, then skip ahead to "Argan Oil.")Here's my take on the options that the beauty industry has provided, and the solution that does work:
1. BABY POWDER, TALCUM POWDER, TAPIOCA POWDER, ETC.
There are literally tons of internet sites and blogs — beauty and otherwise — that suggest that powder of some kind will solve the saturated boob issue. I get this. It's logical action. There is a reason we powder baby's bums, and that's to prevent diaper rash (which is caused by sitting and stewing in wetness) — clearly an issue akin to boob sweat. Basically, these powder solutions work as expected. Either they are an actual powder or cream powder (which is basically a cream the turns into a powder when it dries), with which you coat your underboob and cleavage so that they will absorb the moisture that is created therein.
While the premise is sound, I found the reality repulsive. No matter what product of this nature I tried, they all pilled up into little, white cakey powder balls in my bra. It was an unpleasant feeling and it was a mess. I also found that powders of this kind would leave a trail in my cleavage, so it looked like I dropped a powdered doughnut on my boobs and was saving it for later.
2. INSERTS FOR YOUR BRA
As far as I can tell, all the inserts work as they are supposed to — meaning they absorb. But the patented shapes cannot stand up to the beating that is living in my bra. By the end of the day, these could literally be anywhere — protecting my side, poking out my cleavage or in my belly button. If you're asking me, you are better off stuffing your bra with tissues, like we did when we were 10. (I know, different reasons.) Furthermore, these didn't seem to do anything for the more unseemly issues (like smells and rashes).
3. SPECIALTY BREAST DEODORANT (OR REGULAR DEODORANT)
Honestly, this works. But I still don't like it. I'm not a huge fan of deodorant because I am freaked out by the whole link between aluminum — a common deodorant ingredient — and things like Alzheimer's disease and breast cancer. That said, reputable sources — like the New York Times — say this link isn't a real issue. But I'm a "better safe than sorry" kind of a girl. So while I am willing to use deodorant, I don't want more reasons to use it than I already have.
4. ARGAN OIL
I use Acure Certified Organic Moroccan Argan Oil to solve all my boob sweat issues. This is my truest solution. You won't find it anywhere else, and honestly, curing underboob sweat is an off-label use for this product. But it works! I'm not 100 percent sure why I first tried it. I think I was just at my wit's end. My underboobs were itchy and irritated and the oil seemed calming. I had also heard or read somewhere that argan oil is antibacterial, which could help; so why not? Hence, a solution was born.
Basically, I use a couple of drops of oil under my boobs and in my cleavage, and all the icky of boob sweat is no longer part of my life — no heat rashes, no smell, no sweat rings.
Added Bonus: super soft skin. So yeah. You should try it.
Images: ABC; Instagram; Giphy; Acure Organics