*THIS* Happens When You Don’t Shower After a Workout

*THIS* Happens When You Don’t Shower After a Workout

I was having a discussion with my team at kaia naturals recently and one of the girls mentioned that she gets very itchy whenever she exercises, usually on her arms where she has eczema. She did not realize that the itchiness was from sweat drying on her skin. This is one of many issues that happen when you leave sweat on your skin.

You could be inviting bacteria that is detrimental to your skin when you don’t shower after exercise. With that in mind, I am going to tell you what sweat does to your skin and how to prevent these skin conditions from appearing in the first place.


What’s In Sweat?

Sweat is 99% water, and the rest is sodium chloride, lactic acid and urea. Before I talk about the negative effects of sweat, I want to clarify that sweating is good for you. It’s when it is left to dry on your skin that it attracts bacteria that can cause redness, acne flare-ups, and clogged pores.



What Other Type of Skin Conditions Can Sweat Cause?

Sweat is harmless for the most part, but you need to know that when you don’t wash off after the gym, these skin conditions can arise:


Heat Rashes

When you don’t shower within two or three hours, you are more likely to contract bacterial infections on your skin. Heat rashes are the most common since they occur whenever bacteria and sweat come into contact on the body.




No one wants to talk about this and find it embarrassing, but sweat can produce acne problems, particularly on your back. When sweat is mixed with bacteria such as staphylococcus aureus and yeast infections such as pityrosporum, they cause inflamed follicles that appear as acne-like lesions on your face and torso.




This is a more serious skin condition that is not caused by sweat per se, but it does aggravate it. If you have eczema, exercise can make it worse because when you sweat, the moisture evaporates to cool you down and causes your skin to dry out. This leaves a salty residue that irritates it further. It can even make you feel itchy during your workout.



Yeast Infections

Yes, I am going there. When you sweat, sensitive areas such as your breasts, groin, and underarms are more likely to come into contact with bacteria since they have folds. They are the perfect condition for harboring candida yeasts, which can develop into a yeast infection unfortunately.


this is what happens when you don't shower after a workout

Image by Leon Martinez


I Don’t Have Time to Shower, So What Do I Do?

You probably feel like you have to sacrifice your midday workout after reading that list. You don’t have to worry though because we have some tried and true tips to help you get fresh and remove the salt and bacteria from your skin without taking too much time away from your day:


Guard Yourself against Sweat

The salt and acidity in perspiration can dry out your skin, so your best bet is to always keep a towel on you so that you can wipe off the sweat as you work out or use wet wipes like the vitamin cleanse. Don’t use your shirt because you are still transferring sweat to your skin.


Wear the Right Clothing

Your workout gear needs to be light and breathable so sweat can evaporate off your body. Consider the following options:

  • Cotton is ideal since it is the softest on your skin.
  • Get clothes one size larger so that they don’t rub against your skin.
  • Consider wearing your clothes inside out so that the seams don’t rub against you.
  • Wear sweat wicking sports clothing. It will take trial and error to get it right.
  • Wear layers so that you can strip them off as you warm up so you don’t overheat.
  • Always wash your clothes after your wear them. Don’t let them stink and fester in your gym bag only to put them back on for your next workout.

If you have any other quick hacks for the gym, please share them with us down below. We would love to hear from you!

Feature Image by Sachith Hettigodage

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Derived from bamboo fibres, these cloths are designed to be returned to the earth. Plant the cloth, water the soil, and watch it disappear.

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What “Toxins” are you Sweating Out

What “Toxins” are you Sweating Out

Can you really sweat out toxins?

These days you see the word “detox” on just about anything (and yes, at kaia naturals we use it to describe a process you go through when transitioning from antiperspirant to deodorant). A common misconception however, is that sweating cleanses your organs and gets rid of toxins. While sweat does provide certain health benefits, there is no scientific evidence that proves sweating detoxes your organs. To better understand what sweating actually does, I am going to give you a breakdown of what happens to your body when you sweat.  


What’s In Sweat

Sweat is actually made up of 99% water, and 1% trace elements of sodium chloride (salt), lactic acid and urea.

The Journal of Environmental & Public Health states that there is some validity to sweating minuscule amounts of metals from your body, but sweating is not an effective means of excreting toxins. 


How Sweating Actually Works

Sweating serves as an air conditioner for your body. Fluids are released from the two to four million sweat glands that control your body temperature. Most of them are eccrine glands, which are found in the feet, palms, forehead, cheeks, and armpits. They release a clear and odorless fluid that helps your body cool down through evaporation.

The other type of sweat gland are apocrine glands and can be found in the armpits and genital regions. They produce a thick liquid that causes body odor when it comes into contact with bacteria.

These glands are activated by nerves and respond to the following stimuli:

  • Messages from the brain indicating that the body is too hot
  • Hormones
  • Emotions
  • Physical activity or exercise
  • Medications
  • Foods
  • Temperature

sweating is not detoxing kaia naturals

Image by Li Sun


The Way Your Body Actually Detoxes

Detoxification actually occurs in your kidneys and liver, which are not linked to sweating. That is why charcoal only works as a form of detoxification when you ingest it in the form of a pill after a hard night of drinking or when a doctor or pharmacist prescribe it for poison control. As a topical application, charcoal has the ability to draw out impurities from your pores but not to detox internal organs unless ingested.  


The True Benefits of Sweating

Sweating simply does not remove toxins in your bloodstream the same way your kidneys and liver do. That being said, sweating performs other important health functions, such as:

  • Muscle Recovery: Sweating increases circulation throughout the skin and blood flow, which encourages cellular regeneration. This is why the sauna, a hot bath, and exercise are often used as forms of physical therapy for injuries.
  • Supports Skin Health When our body temperature rises, it increases the blood flow to the skin. Over the long term, this will have a positive impact onskin health.
  • Cardiovascular: Sweating promotes blood flow, which prevents plaque from forming in your arteries.

Looking at the Romans, the Turks, Native Americans and Scandinavians, sweating has been integral to wellness in many civilizations and cultures through the ages. There certainly is ancient wisdom and tried-and-true validity to its health benefits. 

While sweating does not remove toxins from your body, there is plenty of scientific evidence from the medical community that embraces the health benefits of sweating as a form of cellular movement.

If you have any comments, questions and suggestions for articles you would like to see or learn more about, leave a comment below.

Feature Image by Anh Nguyen

Why Your Armpits Still Smell After a Shower

Why Your Armpits Still Smell After a Shower

There are many reasons why body odor occurs and it varies among different people. In fact, you may notice a faint odor emitting from your underarms even after you shower. To help you get an understanding of this issue, I am going to tell you why this happens and what you can do about it.  


How Body Odor Occurs

Sweat is the main culprit, which is caused by two types of glands in your body:


Eccrine Glands

They open directly onto your skin and can be found all over your body. When your body temperature rises, they release fluids that evaporate and help your body cool down. These fluids are often odorless.


Apocrine Glands

They are found in areas where you have hair, such as your armpit and groin area. These glands release a milky fluid when you are stressed and are odorless until they come into contact with a bacteria then they create odor.

Hair is particularly prone to trapping bacteria, which is why men are more likely to smell even after showering. In other words, lingering underarm odor is caused by enduring bacteria.


How Apple Cider Vinegar Can Eliminate Odors 

A study conducted by Middlesex University tested different bacteria strains in petri dishes with apple cider vinegar and cultured them together at 37 degrees celsius for a 24 hour period. They proved that apple cider vinegar reduced bacterial growth and eliminated bacteria such as E. coli, C. albicans (which includes corynebacteria), and S. aureus. This means that apple cider vinegar creates an inhospitable environment for bacteria to grow and eliminates odors as a result.



Photo by Abdullah Qasim


You may also notice that apple cider vinegar has a unique scent, which comes from acetic acid. Acetic acid and other organic acids are found to be responsible for killing bacteria by passing through the bacteria’s cell membranes and neutralizing it.


How to Incorporate Apple Cider Vinegar Into Your Routine

Eliminate that lingering underarm odor using these two methods:

  1. Directly onto a cotton ball

You can apply the solution directly onto a cotton ball and rub it into each underarm area after you shower.

  1. An antibacterial soap

If you prefer to use it in a more compact form, try using an antibacterial soap. The takesumi detox® underarm bar that I created actually has this ingredient. The key is to massage this into your underarm for 30 seconds as you must ensure that your underarms are “squeaky” clean as this really ensures it leaves a barrier so bacteria cannot survive.

Regardless of which method you prefer, you must apply the solution to each of your armpits for 30 seconds to truly eliminate odor causing bacteria. If you are a guy ensure you rub into the skin because of body hair.

For other great tips on this topic, check out the reviews on our underarm bar. 

If you have a great tip on this subject please leave a comment on our blog as we love to learn from our readers. Or if you have a question please feel free to ask as I am happy to answer.