nivea stress protectEvery bloke has been there. Right in the middle of an important meeting, or a first date, or before an important game, the pores under your arms open up to rain sweat onto your shirt. Nivea claims to have developed a cure for this stress sweat with a new Stress Protect deodorant.

According to the Nivea product announcement, sweat caused by anxiety is actually smellier than traditional heat sweat as well, which is probably why those stains in your good shirt’s armpits still smell after several wash cycles.

The good news, should you believe it, is that the new anti-perspirant deodorant from Nivea uses a unique anti-bacterial formula and a zinc complex to keep even the most intense stress sweat under control.

According to Nivea’s scientific and regulatory affairs manager Ken Lee, there’s a lot more to sweat than just salt and water.

“Thermal sweating is the body’s reaction to temperature and physical exercise where eccrine sweat glands start to release sweat all over the body in an attempt to cool down. This is the type of sweating anti-perspirant deodorants generally address,” Lee explains to EFTM.

“The second type is emotional sweating, which occurs independently of ambient temperature and is your body’s automatic reaction when facing a heightened emotionally stressful situation, like a job interview, public speaking or even before a first date. In addition to other signs of emotional stress such as heart beating faster or feeling flustered, the apocrine sweat glands are activated, releasing sweat and other substances that result in a stronger body odour.”

There’s a reason you smell worse than the wife

What’s more, men and women’s sweating isn’t the same. As Lee explains:

“There are subtle differences in the type and distribution of sweat glands between males and females, for example, men have fewer apocrine sweat glands in the underarms compared to women whilst overall producing more sweat than women. This can mean a stronger resulting malodour from women’s underarms in stressful situations compared to men.

“Interestingly, there are also subtle racial differences too – for example, east Asians have been found to have fewer apocrine glands than people of European or African descent. More intriguing still are gender differences in the perception of resulting body odour from stress sweating – for example, women evaluate male body odour to be more unpleasant than men, hinting at our more primeval pheromone-driven communication to achieve behavioural outcomes.”

This results in a slightly different product from Nivea for men and women, as Lee tells us that “From a formulation perspective, these differences are addressed by careful selection of fragrance compounds.”

What makes body odour stink?

Want to know why you reek after a gym session. According to Lee, it’s all about the apocrine sweat.

“Strong body odour is a largely result of the breakdown (metabolism) of apocrine sweat, which are richer with microbial nutrients compared to ecrine sweat, such as proteins, lipids, sulphur-containing amino acids, volatile fatty-acids and steroids. Ecrine sweat in comparison is largely composed of salt and water,” Lee says.

“The nutrients in the apocrine sweat are very much genetically controlled, hence the differences between men and women, and between pre-pubescent teens and adolescents. It is also influenced by dietary and medicinal intake.”

Available for both men and women in spray and roll-on options, pricing starts at $3.78 and will hit shelves in mid-April.

Price: From $3.78
Web: Nivea