Listen, we’re all friends here. So let’s cut to the, er, sweaty stuff. We’ve all been that person at one time or another. You know, the person who shows up at the office looking like the sweaty kid after recess. And whether your situation is courtesy of an overcrowded (and overheated) subway ride or just because your body has chosen to revolt against you for no reason at all, we've all been there. It’s one thing to ruin a makeup application during a particularly brutal summer commute or to break a sweat in the midst of frenzied errand running, but it could be worse. Hyperhidrosis, or excessive sweating, affects more than just the glands in your underarms — the palms of your hands, the soles of your feet, your face, and other areas on your body could all be in perspiration overdrive.
If other people’s post-spin class sweat is your daily baseline, we know you are probably having some feelings about it. The good news? You’re definitely not alone — 15 million people in the United States can empathize. To speak to the 4.8 percent of the country’s population who understand what hyperhidrosis feels like, we’ve partnered with Dermira to run down the five emotional stages of constantly being the sweatiest person in the room.
Stage One: Readiness
You check the temperature and humidity forecast compulsively before you start your day, even though it probably doesn't matter — you'll be drenched anyway! Forget the frizz factor. How many shirts can you anticipate sweating through today? You triple layer your deodorant, pack your dabbing towel, grab your phone fan, and head out into the world (slowly, of course).
Stage Two: Helplessness
Even though it's happened before, you’ll begin to wonder if it’s normal for eyelids to sweat. Between the mascara running like a river down your face and looking like you could enter a wet t-shirt contest (and win), you know you’re in for a very long day.
Stage Three: Mortification
You refuse to lift your arms above your waist and discreetly towel off whenever the opportunity arises. Hopeful that your coworkers will think you ran to the gym on your lunch break, you’ll start brainstorming totally nonchalant water cooler one liners like, “Oh, this fresh-out-of-the-pool look? Just my normal post-workout glow. Nothing to see here.”
Stage Four: Defeat
Cancel that date you had planned, because you’re ready to go home and hide. You no longer care who witnesses you in this wilted state. Things you do care about? Counting down the minutes until your next shower. And, of course, actually showering.
Stage Five: Acceptance
Eventually, you’ll cycle back to rational thinking. You know what? You’re a human being! Human beings sweat! You can’t beat yourself up over something you have no control over. Instead? You totally own it by projecting confidence wherever the day takes you.
Sweating sucks, but it shouldn't ruin your life! Talk to your doctor about hyperhidrosis and your options, so you can go back to sweating the small stuff (and okay, the big stuff too) without calling for your rain jacket.
This post is sponsored by Dermira.