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What to Use When You’re Out of Deodorant or Cologne

Think of your spice rack like a chemistry set

There’s never a good time to run out of whatever nicely scented accoutrement prevents you from smelling like the mildewy sack of skin that covers your organs. But for some reason, it always seems to happen at exactly the time you most need your body to not smell distinctly human. So what can you do if you’ve run out of your standard synthetic hygiene antibodies?

Easily the most surprising but worthwhile mention comes by way of Yahoo! Answers, specifically commenter Man.With.A.Plan_V3.0, whose name says it all. “A little dab of some minty fresh toothpaste behind the ears and under the collar does the trick,” he writes.

If you’re a more visual advice receiver, this video of a man dressed like a gamer who’s lost sight of the line between a real zombie apocalypse and the one on his screen, illustrates a slightly more drastic method of smelling fresh sans deodorant or cologne:

Sure, you might smell like an ashy second-hand college couch that’s just been Febrezed to oblivion, but at least you don’t smell like you, right?

As is always the case, whether investigating methods to be a better smelling man or anything else, there are internet opinions, and then there are expert opinions. Sue Phillips, a globally-recognized expert in the fragrance and perfume, cosmetics and personal care fields, tells me that fragrances in general are moving toward personalization. “We’ve come up with scent personality quiz,” she admits.

Still, in desperate times, Phillips suggests using scented shampoos all over your body instead of soap and water. But considering that’s only going to be a temporary fix, she also suggests turning your kitchen into a chemistry lab, using fresh herbs and your spice cabinet. “Make a light paste out of some of the fresh herbs in your fridge. You could boil basil and lavender (mint can be a little strong), along with fresh ginger. Add a bit of vanilla oil that people use for baking,” says Phillips. “You just have to be cognizant of the amounts you use in the mixture.” Additionally, Phillips suggests using coconut oil as, “That can be a nicely scented body lotion that will also hydrate your skin.”

All of which is to say, you have no excuses for ever smelling like a caveman. Thinking about it, considering some of these herbs were also around thousands of years ago, even cavemen had no excuse for smelling like cavemen.