The human body is a marvelous thing, but sometimes it smells a little less than marvelous. As it turns out, plenty of these smells are perfectly normal. In fact, if you don't have certain body odors, it's actually a red flag for your health. Human beings simply aren't designed to be odorless.
Really, any person who has gone through puberty is capable of producing body odor, as explained by the NHS. As long as the odor does not change drastically or cause you distress, the it's probably not a cause for concern. But for the most part, anyone who isn't a little kid any more can (and probably will) have smellier armpits, feet, and even hair from time to time.
What's more, your natural body odor is largely influenced by genetics, so how you smell is not entirely in your control, as noted in Greatist. Showering and deodorant can only do so much to cover up your natural essence. Again, that's all to be expected, and it's just part of being a person.
So here are a few cases of bodily smells that are perfectly normal and common to most everyone, even if it isn't something you regularly discuss among friends. Really, everybody smells sometime.
1. Foot Odor
Believe it or not, having slightly smelly feet is actually a sign of good health. Hundreds of millions of bacteria live on human feet, eating dead skin cells and protecting the body from microbial pathogens, according to Discover. In fact, your feet should smell familiar and unique to you, even if it isn't the most pleasant smell ever. As long as your foot odor isn't too acrid or bread-like, you're probably in good shape, as further explained in Discover.
2. Basic Body Odor
People aren't meant to be scent-free. Everyone has an odor that's unique to their body, and it's just part of your signature scent. In fact, changes in body odor may signify a health condition, according to WebMD. It's a good sign when you smell like, well, you.
3. Stress Stink
If you get kind of musty during times of stress, it's incredibly normal. Really, the sweat you produce when anxious contains more apocrine secretions, which produce some especially smell proteins, according to Popular Science. That's why your nervous sweat may smell more strongly than your workout sweat.
4. Tonsil Stones
Formed by food and dead cells, tonsil stones can harbor bacteria and smell terrible, according to Healthline. However, tonsil stones are generally harmless and impossible to totally avoid, although good oral hygiene may help prevent them, as further noted by Healthline. It's just another weird quirk of the body.
5. Armpit Odor
Basically, the armpit is designed to smell. The warm, moist armpit is filled with apocrine sweat glands (AKA the stanky ones) and hair, as explained in Healthline. Any scent is just going to be magnified in that environment.
6. Hair & Scalp Odor
Does your hair smell a bit different if you try to go a few days without shampoo? It's also normal. "The hair and scalp end up smelling because there's a build-up of sebum and sweat, and it makes it a breeding ground for yeast, dead skin cells, and bacteria," said dermatologist Francesca Fusco, MD, in Refinery 29. That said, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Some people simply produce more oil than others, and shampooing too frequently can dry out skin and hair. Sometimes that second-day hair smell is just going to exist, and that's OK.
7. Morning Pee
Most everybody has some funky morning pee. It's not a cause for concern. Morning urine is simply more concentrated and odorous, and that's perfectly normal, according to the Mayo Clinic. Like many of these smells, it's just a part of being human.
After a very frustrating first birth experience, this Deaf mother wanted a change. Will the help of two Deaf doulas give the quality communication and birth experience this mom wants and deserves? Watch Episode Four of Romper's Doula Diaries, Season Two, below, and visit Bustle Digital Group's YouTube page for more episodes.