Photo: Jen Dunlap
Do other people’s noses crinkle when you come close? Have you noticed others backing away from you while you’re speaking to them?If you have a particular odor that’s creating a rift between you and your coworkers, it’s time to adopt some extra grooming precautions.
In her book “Bad Bosses, Crazy Coworkers & Other Office Idiots: 201 Smart Ways to Handle the Toughest People Issues,” Vicky Oliver shares some tips that can prevent that malodorous scent:
1. Shower power. Nothing conquers body odor better than a meticulous scrub under a hot shower. If you’re a sweat hog, take two showers a day.
2. Don’t subject people to smell hell. Opt for deodorant soap instead. Dial, Lever Brothers and Zest all manufacture deodorant soaps in a range of fragrances.
3. Rush to brush. Invest in a body brush, and use it to scrub away those invisible pieces of grime that tenaciously clung to legs and back. If a brush feels too harsh, buy a loofah.
4. Say “Ta-Ta” to that torrid tar smell. Some dandruff shampoos flake out when it comes to the way they smell. Compensate for their deadly, tar-based odor by using a light conditioner on your hair directly after shampooing, or a teaspoon of sweet-smelling mousse.
5. Don’t give dirt any place to hide. Shave daily — hair allows dirt to get stuck on your skin. If you’re a man, keep facial hair to a minimal. Women need to shave their legs at least once a week, even in the winter.
6. Atone with toner and get squeaky clean. The alcohol content of most toners will strip skin of even the most stubborn makeup shards. Do you exercise regularly? Swathe a toner-infused cotton ball down your neck and upper chest area twice a day after washing your face. You may be surprised at what you find.
7. Toothpaste or tooth polish? Contrary to popular belief, the brand of toothpaste isn’t as important as just using some of the white stuff twice a day. Invest in some mouthwash for yourself, and watch your coworkers breathe a sigh of relief.
8. Sticky situation of the day. Does your back feel clammy after a long day of slaving under the fluorescent glare? Do you have a ring around your abdomen at the place where your underwear hugs your waistline? Powder off those problem areas. Buy a body powder that contains cornstarch. Use deodorant on the area first, and let dry completely. Then dust with a light sprinkle of powder.
9. Throw away your moldy oldies. Most women don’t realise that makeup has an expiration date. The packaging may not declare precisely when that date is. But if you’ve been using the same foundation for over three months, it may have developed a yucky, “old-lady” smell to it. Certain sunblock lotions can also turn rancid after a few months as ingredients start to separate. Not only is there a loss of product efficacy, the ingredients begin to smell poorly.
10. Nail that grooming thing. Dirty fingernails are unseemly. If you’re a woman, there is no substitute for a professional manicure. If you’re a man, at least commit to using a nailbrush twice a week.
11. Don’t smell like a perfume counter. Go light on the perfume and cologne. Ditto for makeup, which often contains various perfumes that don’t complement the perfumes found in other makeup products.
12. Keep it clean. Change your underwear every day. Also, do you smoke or own pets? Be especially conscientious about ridding your clothing of any remnant smells. Assume that the people with whom you work have a fantastic sense of smell, and do your utmost not to offend it.
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