In theory I shouldn't have to write this article, but the reality is, "Pigs don't know pigs stink." The same concept is true for most of us guys.
You spend crazy amounts of time tuning your coolest moves, mastering the music and dressing sharp to impress the ladies; don't blow it because your deodorant/cologne isn't first class. You're going to be within sniffing range of someone for a few minutes, you don't want them remembering you for all the wrong reasons.
Verify with a few trusted individuals that your pre-dance scent enhancement system is still holding up now that you're gearing up for "So You Think You Can Dance."
A couple females in class recently told me one of the guys wasn't wearing deodorant. I doubt that's the case. I suspect what he used wasn't strong enough for him by that time in the evening, combined with dancing.
Of course, they didn't tell me that week, that would have been too easy. They told me a couple weeks later that they were uncomfortable every time he rotated to them.
Next time in class if it's still the same issue, I'll tell him. (I really don't look forward to that assignment, but if he's paying me to improve his dancing, I'll give him his money's worth.)
When I started dancing I was using a "natural" deodorant ("Tom's of Maine" if I remember...) It was fine for my regular, boring life before dancing. After I started taking regular dance classes it became obvious my existing deodorant just wasn't cutting it.
I'd get in my car after class and it would automatically roll down the windows without me touching anything. I can take a hint. If I stopped at Trader Joe's on my way home it was like the parting of the Red Sea, everybody would move out of my way as I checked out the yogurt and dark chocolate. (A guy's got to find perfect nourishment after working out.) Something wasn't right and it took me a while to figure it out.
My previous deodorant just couldn't handle my new found love. We had to part ways.
It took me trying two or three other brands before settling on Mitchum Power Gel. Everybody is different and what works for me may not work for someone else. While I rarely discuss this publicly, I still continue looking at all the newer "clinical strength" products that have hit the market over the last couple years.
I also tried a couple "invisible solids," and they worked fine in terms of odor protection, but they stained my workout/dance clothes after a month or two, with stains that simply would not wash out. (I'm too cheap to replace all my shirts that quickly.) I wasn't sure about the gel at first, but it works great and doesn't ruin my clothes.
I also carry a wash cloth and towel in my "dance bag" (future article), so I can freshen up before and/or after a class or dance night. Don't assume you can only clean up first thing in the morning or before you leave home/work.
I'm always looking for unscented products, because I've also spent considerable time finding a cologne that fits me. (I hate when my cologne fights with my deodorant.) I also use a lightly scented body wash (Arbonne Sky) which works perfectly with my cologne. It provides a subtle, masculine base scent that works really well for me.
While I prefer unscented deodorants, I'd use a lightly scented one over the way I smelled before my upgrades. You need to experiment and find something stronger than normal if you're a regular dancer. When you get it right, few notice; when you get it wrong, everybody around you knows.
Even if you're not in doubt, ask someone you trust with something like, "Look, I need a straight answer... Is my deodorant strong enough for me?" Even if you think you're fine, ask someone this question, during/after a class, at the club, or just toward the end of your normal work day.
Don't shoot the messenger no matter what they say!! You really need to know!!
If they say anything other than "Yes, it's perfect for you!!!!!!!" then you need to get a few other opinions. Look for them being uncomfortable with the answer or sugar coating the response in any way. Almost nobody wants to tell you directly, "You stink, and I've wanted to tell you for months..." Take anything other than "you're fine" as a sign you need an upgrade.
I'm also a big believer of cologne, but moderation is key. I know a few people are allergic to perfumes/colognes, but almost everybody is painfully repelled by my natural, post dance/workout scent without the right deodorants. Just don't overdue your scents.
Guys might be guys, but smelling like "dirty locker room" is a total loser when partner dancing.
In a follow-up article we'll discuss my "dance bag," which is always in my car. It has a set of grooming products and goes with me almost everywhere I go.
Let me know what you're doing to keep the air around you fresh and clean.