Sweating. Not a fun thing for dance costume. Besides causing unsightly ‘wet spots’ and eventually staining, it can also cause embarrassing odors. So, what can we do?
There are options for perspiration control. The first and most obvious choice is finding a deodorant/antiperspirant that works with your body chemistry (yes, bodies react differently to different products). Did you know that you can also use your antiperspirant on all other areas of your body, to control your excessive sweating? This procedure has controlled my personal, excessive sweating during our hot and humid summer days. I no longer suffer from ‘heat rash’ because I am very generous with my antiperspirant application!For extra protection, you can use an underarm perspiration-control pad. This was a staple, decades ago, and was sold in drug stores and department stores. Today, you can still find fabric versions of this item and also disposable pads. A local Minnesota company, Hollywood Fashion Secrets, became internationally famous for their ‘Hollywood Fashion Tape’. This same company sells Garment Shields, which keep you fresh and save you money by:
- Preventing embarrassing underarm wetness
- Protecting fabrics from permanent stains
- Keeping underarm odors off of clothing
- Saving on dry cleaning bills
Their unique moisture-wicking, quick-dry fabric is “unbeatable for stopping wetness and protecting clothing”, according to the folks at Hollywood Fashion Tape. This is one of two products that I personally endorse and resell, as these products actually WORK.
Another method for controlling perspiration in a dance costume would be to add a moisture-wicking lining to the garment itself. Your perspiration can soak into this fabric, keeping out of the outer fabrics. Sheer mesh sleeves, rather than non-sheer sleeves, might be another suggestion for excessive sweating.
Camouflage is also something to consider. Solid fabrics will show perspiration much more than a printed fabric will. If you must use a solid fabric, add a distraction, such as a rhinestoned area, you won’t see sweat patches as much.
If you are prone to excessive sweating, become aware of the preventative measures for your body and your dance costumes. Then, you can minimize any unsightly underarm (or back, chest or anywhere else) stains and draw attention to yourself for all the right reasons! Just because your body chemistry creates more than your fair share of perspiration, you don’t need to advertise it with your poor costume planning.
Once you have perspiration set into our dance costumes, I highly recommend and resell “Fresh Again®”, an odor-eliminating spray that is available in 8-oz, 32-oz spray bottles and gallon jugs that you can refill your smaller spray bottles with. This product does NOT add a fragrance (which I personally appreciate, as I am sensitive to all fragrances), it removes the odor molecules. Does it work instantly? NO. But if you spray the inside of your dance costume (and it works on shoes, too!) and let the garment dry overnight, the odors will be gone the next morning!
At Satin Stitches Ltd, we have tested this product on as many fabrics that we have access to, as well as trims. This product does not harm fragile costume fabrics or trims. It also does not harm people – it is totally SAFE. This product has been around, and in use, for decades. It has been under-marketed. Broadway shows use it, costume rental companies use it, and fire departments use it. You should, too!
©Deborah J. Nelson/ Head Designer and President of Satin Stitches Ltd.
(as published in Minnesota Dancer Magazine August 2019)