There's nothing sexier than talking about how to prevent chafing in the summer. Honestly. Because taking good care of our skin is actually pretty sexy. And when the weather is hot our sensitive skin can suffer. Chafing can happen anywhere on the body where skin rubs on skin or against the clothes. Contrary to all the buzz, chafing does not just occur between our inner thighs. Our underarms, around our bra lines, our groin, feet, and especially our poor, tender nipples are often victims of the pain.
So, what's the rub? There's nothing wrong with you if you experience chafing. It's a common occurrence that the folks at body glide (an anti-chafing stick) have outlined can happen for a variety of reasons, including:
- Heat and hot weather or excess sweat
- Ill-fitting clothing or fabrics that don't wick moisture
- Long distance activities like running or cycling
- Overly developed muscles from exercise
- Extra body weight or sensitive skin
- Tight-fitting shoes or heels
- Sand or Salt residue from sweat or ocean water
In worst case scenario, the small tears in your skin caused by friction can grow from a red irritated area to a painful infection. Not only does it look terrible and hurts for reals, it takes a long time to heal. WebMed advises you to consult a doc if things are bleeding, crusted (boo), or become too painful. Before you get yourself admitted to the ER, read on for chafe-free tactics. There's no need to suffer just 'cause you know how to work up a sweat!
1. Prevention is the best medicine.
Drink so much water. Hydrated skin is supple skin and less prone to irritation than dry, dehydrated skin. Another awesome perk to hydration is that as you sweat (as we do when we're hot), the body pushes moisture and salts out of the top layer of skin. If you're dehydrated and ain't got no mo' moisture to sweat out, you'll end up with a salty layer stuck on your skin that will increase skin tears and chafing. Go ahead and turn that faucet on and put your refillable water bottle to good use.
2. Dress like a baller.
Moisture wicking fabrics are your friend. Avoid tops that are bunchy in the underarms, or shorts that ride up your inner thighs. Cotton retains all the moisture you sweat out, so 100 percent cotton panties might be your downfall on a hot day.
Glide-on anti-chafing lubricants have ladies the world round spellbound. What diaper rash cream did for the children of the '80s, these new technologies are doing for our sanity today, in a much more user-friendly way. These work great for skin on skin contact, and preventing rubbage caused by clothing.
4. Lady parts.
If you're a fan of shaving your bikini line, but have problems with razor burn, you may want to regroup for the summer months. Either grow the whole downstairs party out or visit the wax salon, but definitely try to avoid the constant regrowth of hair in the area. Already irritated groin skin is ripe for chafing when the weather is hot and sticky. Applying an anti-chafing lubricant to your bikini line can help prevent problems as well if you're committed to your razor.
5. On top commando.
Chafed nipples are a super bummer. If you can swing a day of no bra dancing, but avoid it for the pain incurred by your halter top, Band-Aids are the answer to your life's problems. Seriously. Either use the standard style, or smaller circular ones, then apply them with the gauze pad over your nipple. If you'll be out all day, I recommend carrying a backup in case one comes loose.
Go on and have fun this summer. Get all hot and sweaty and fight the good fight against chafing. The key is to stay hydrated, stay dry, and keep those trouble spots lubricated.
Images: Getty Images