Hyperhidrosis, for those of you who don't know, is so not cute in the slightest. It's a common condition suffered by both sexes which is more often known as excessive sweating. It's not pleasant, and so if this post grosses you out in any way then I invite you to leave this post now and check out one of my LUSH reviews instead!
This last week has been utterly hellish for me. Why? Because I ran out of deodorant. Any not just any normal deodorant, my ultra-strong 72 hour stuff. Can you see where this post is going?
I didn't get chance to pick any more up as I was at college the rest of the week. I snuck some of my mum's deodorant, even 'borrowed' my boyfriends Ted Baker one, which turned out to only be body spray and not antiperspirant. My sister went into town for me, only to find that Boots was closed on Sundays, and my mum brought me back the wrong one on Tuesday. Complete and utter disaster.
Being an anxious person, hyperhidrosis is something I've suffered with for a long time. You may think 'ew, gross!' but it's not exactly something that is my fault and it's something I desperately wish I could stop.
When I was in year 7, my friends were running round the classroom tickling each other during lunch. I didn't want to join in as I didn't want them to see the wet patches under my arms, despite almost drowning myself in strong deodorant day after day. One friend came running up to me, tried to tickle me under my blazer, then recoiled in horror when she touched the wetness, exclaiming "Alice! Why are you so sweaty?" I made sure to always wear my blazer and my jumper from then onwards in order to hide myself.
It only got worse as I got older. I started putting deodorant on both morning and night, sleeping with my top off and my arms above my head in order to let it dry. Nothing worked and soon my white school shirts began to develop yellow stains under the arms which not even the washing machine could remove. I felt so humiliated, ashamed even, terrified that the girls in PE lessons would see my disgusting clothing while I got changed. I felt like a freak.
More recently, I took a beautiful lilac shirt out of my wardrobe which I had bought especially for my work experience. However the shirt had not even been on ten minutes before a dark purple patch started creeping out from under my arm. I ripped it off, shoved it in the washing machine and told my mum she could have it.
Even now, I will often come home at lunchtime and have to change my t-shirt before I go back to college, sometimes even a third time when I get home at 3:30. I'm very lucky that I have a lot of clothes.
So running out of antiperspirant last week was one of the worst things ever. I felt so sticky and disgusting. I had never thought I had smelt, just been wet, but now I was paranoid that I was even more gross than before. The last straw was when my boyfriend asked me to show his the new bras I had bought. I called him out for being cheeky, before taking off my t-shirt and throwing it at his head. He instantly gagged and told me that my top 'stinks'. I couldn't help it, I just burst into tears.
He hadn't meant to upset me. He didn't understand just how much I've struggled with this nearly all of my life, how vile and uncomfortable I feel on a day to day basis. It's not so bad now I am taking anxiety medication and am using super strong deodorant, but it's still there.
If you are somebody who suffers with this, please please do not blame yourself. I more than anyone know that it's not your fault and there's hardly anything you can do. I've kept it my dirty little secret for so long, scared of anyone finding out how much it's upset me and spoiled social events for me, nobody should ever be made to feel the same way.
If you are being bullied for this, please tell somebody. Do not suffer in silence as you are not alone. There are plenty of forums online with help and advice about hyperhidrosis and products you can try to prevent it. I am currently about to begin trialling a product which you apply at night and then lasts for three days. Hopefully it will be my wonder cure.
Does anybody else suffer with hyperhidrosis?
How do you cope?