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sweaty shorts

Old 02-02-21, 07:11 PM
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headwind15
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sweaty shorts

Hi, I am 60, and have been a cyclist riding in padded cycling shorts since 1975. I live in Arizona where it's not really humid or anything. It has been between 50 and 60 degrees, so not really hot. I am at the point where I ride practically half of the time off the seat to improve my situation. (more airflow underneath) In the last couple of years, I have noticed that my crotch has been sweating more, and my shorts become soaked after being on the bike for only an hour. They become so soaked that it feels uncomfortable, like I am riding in wet diapers. (I bicycle tour also) Two years ago, when I was touring Baja, it was happening, but it was not such a big deal, as I would simply change shorts a few times a day. I was considering riding with talcom powder, but I think it would get wet, not absorb a significant amount of water. Any thoughts/ ideas would be appreciated. Thank you.
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Old 02-02-21, 07:43 PM
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big john
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Have you tried shorts with extremely thin chamois?
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Old 02-02-21, 08:25 PM
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I think my shorts chamois are medium, not thin and not thick. In 1981, I met Cathy Schunabelt, a cycling shorts seamstress. I actually don't know the spelling and I do not expect you to know the name. I have been somewhat of a loyal customer. Her shorts have been rebranded now as AERO TECH design.. (I think that I was not the only one who struggled with the spelling) The shorts have a really quick drying synthetic pad (used to be called chamois, but I believe that was leather.) I have been using Aero Tech shorts for a long time and am sure I have used them for literally tens of thousands of miles, so I am distancing myself from the idea that it is the shorts. I'm assuming my problem is age related. After an hour I felt up underneath and it is simpily swampsville. A few times now in desperation, I have gone onto a side road and spent 10 minutes with my shorts pulled down and shorts/behind receiving direct sunrays in a desperate attempt to dry off. This never happened when I was younger, twenties through fifties.
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Old 02-02-21, 08:29 PM
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Originally Posted by headwind15 View Post
Two years ago, when I was touring Baja, it was happening, but it was not such a big deal, as I would simply change shorts a few times a day.
Changing shorts a few times a day sounds like a big deal to me. Sorry, hope you find a good solution.
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Old 02-02-21, 09:31 PM
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Well, if it bothers you and you don't think it's the shorts the only alternative is it's you. Maybe it's hyperhydrosis. Might be worth trying a different brand of shorts with a different liner.
I remember real chamois. We had to lube 'em before wearing.
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Old 02-03-21, 08:25 AM
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Maybe try triathlon shorts? They tend to have a thinner pad to allow for running.
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Old 02-03-21, 10:40 AM
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Is this really such a big deal. When you ride when it is hot you sweat. Then when you get home, you take a cool shower, and then everything is right with the world. When you engage is most any sport you can expect to sweat.
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Old 02-03-21, 10:50 AM
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Shave.

Seriously, shave your hair down there. Doesn't have to be shaved slick, just trim the length down. If you have a big wad of hair between you and the bike shorts then it's going to be holding on to sweat that you'd rather have be pulled out by the moisture wicking fabric that may have been a partial reason for buying them.

I find that I'm notably cooler and drier beneath both jersey and shorts when I trim short my body hair that is under them. I also attribute the fact that I don't have to use chamois butter or any creams to keeping my body hair short. I don't get any chaffing or saddle sores even on long 4 or 5 hour rides.

Oh, don't wear underwear under your bike shorts or bibbs. That's just another layer like hair that will cause issues. Especially if it's cotton which holds sweat when wet.

Last edited by Iride01; 02-03-21 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 02-03-21, 11:37 AM
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I'm NOT a doctor, but I work with several people who are diabetic and talk about it all the time. One of the symptoms that comes up a lot is excessively sweaty crotch. I am not suggesting anything but having your blood sugar checked. Please do not take this as a diagnosis and hate me for it!
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Old 02-03-21, 11:44 AM
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wear non padded shorts
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Old 02-03-21, 01:07 PM
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I once had some mountaineering ambitions and read extensively on that subject. One of the authors made a comment about using antipersperent on his feet to make frost bitten feet less likely. I have used a barrier cream, used on hands when working with epoxy resins but I've used it underarm with good results. It would not cost much to try if one of those solutions would work for you.
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Old 02-03-21, 01:36 PM
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wet/ soggy/ moist shorts

Originally Posted by big john View Post
Well, if it bothers you and you don't think it's the shorts the only alternative is it's you. Maybe it's hyperhydrosis. Might be worth trying a different brand of shorts with a different liner.
I remember real chamois. We had to lube 'em before wearing.
I do not know if you believe this, but I have never herd of hyperhidrosis before, so I checked into it and it is possible that too much coffee is the cause. So you may be right. Effective immediately... no coffee.
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Old 02-03-21, 01:47 PM
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wet shorts

Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
Is this really such a big deal. When you ride when it is hot you sweat. Then when you get home, you take a cool shower, and then everything is right with the world. When you engage is most any sport you can expect to sweat.
I did not consider 50 -60 degrees hot. In the spirit of Bike Forums I thought cyclist who have problems wrote in and other cyclists who may know give (hopefully) good advise. I know this is no "big deal" to you as it is not happening to you, but it is big to me, to the point that I took the time to write up the post. I did not get anything from your comment(s). I just want to do something about it now riding in really wet cycling shorts will turn into a saddlesore issue. Do you just ignore a oil light sensor in your car an sluff it off and say its just part of it, whatever?
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Old 02-03-21, 01:57 PM
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I'm one of those who hate padded shorts. I'm a bit puzzled as to why bike shorts have grown enormous pads over the last few years. They didn't exist back in the day. Perhaps it's because most bikes today come with crappy foam over hard plastic saddles. For myself, I only buy shorts with ultrathin pads (Aerotech is one brand that makes them) and use them with a Brooks B-17 Imperial saddle with cutout.
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Old 02-03-21, 02:34 PM
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There are products that block your sweat glands. I had tried one but didn't have the patience. It takes a few applications over several days during times that you don't sweat to get them to work. You might have the patience and they may have gotten better since I tried many years ago. Here's what shows up on amazon: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=hyperhydrosis
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Old 02-03-21, 11:22 PM
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Sweaty shorts in humid South Texas causes a constant battle with crotch rot. So anti-fungal before and after a ride is routine. Burns like fire but is worth the burn for relief.
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Old 02-04-21, 04:06 AM
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I've found the thicker Dupont CoolMax pads wick sweat away and evaporate it more quickly than my shorts/bibs with thinner pads. Seems counter-intuitive, but I have three shorts and bibs with two variations of the CoolMax pad and they're outstanding for comfort no matter how muggy the weather or how much I sweat.

If you want to try those pads inexpensively, check Amazon for Przewalski and Spotti brand shorts and bibs. I think both are the same manufacturer selling under two brands -- the Spotti bibs with what they call "4D" CoolMax pad is labeled both Spotti and Przewalski inside. I've used both brands for almost three years now, no complaints. Nothing fancy but great values for $20-$35, comparable to The Black Bibs and possibly a bit better if I'm judging mainly by the pads.
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Old 02-04-21, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by headwind15 View Post
I did not consider 50 -60 degrees hot. In the spirit of Bike Forums I thought cyclist who have problems wrote in and other cyclists who may know give (hopefully) good advise. I know this is no "big deal" to you as it is not happening to you, but it is big to me, to the point that I took the time to write up the post. I did not get anything from your comment(s). I just want to do something about it now riding in really wet cycling shorts will turn into a saddlesore issue. Do you just ignore a oil light sensor in your car an sluff it off and say its just part of it, whatever?
Actually I keep a close watch on the oil monitor in my pickup, and change the oil when it gets to 20%. And I use an up level synthetic, changing the oil myself, so I know it is done right. Changing oil in you car is the cheapest maintence you can do.
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Old 02-04-21, 10:20 AM
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Riding a recumbent bike and trike, I am somewhat reclined, so cooling air blow up the rugby shorts I wear. Works for me.
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Old 02-04-21, 11:10 AM
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What kind of saddle are you riding? I had similar problems when I was riding a Unicanitor mod 55 (unpadded, flexy nylon shell). Problems went away with a Brooks B17 or C17. Some saddles breathe, some don't. Find one that does.
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Old 02-04-21, 04:27 PM
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Try some different shorts. A good chamois prevents the very problem you describe. I live and ride in the Mississippi Delta where the temps and humidity are both frequently 90+. I leave a trail of sweat behind me like a leaky water wagon, but my chamois manages to keep my bits as dry and comfortable as possible.

FWIW, I prefer the Garneau 4-Motion or 4.1-Motion, but I've had good results from other chamois as well.
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Old 05-11-21, 09:57 AM
  #22  
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UPDATE:
Due to cycling with a vitamin d deficiency, I had an excessive sweating condition. Unfortunately, when you ride in wet cycling shorts, It really does skin damage to the saddle contact point(s). I ended up with (painful) skin cysts. I used salicylic acid to soften the lumps / cysts/ lumps.
Positioning/ using different shorts... all would have been of no help. So, I did not have hyperhidrosis, even though the symptom was similar. Thanks for the help anyways.
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Old 05-11-21, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by rando_couche View Post
What kind of saddle are you riding? I had similar problems when I was riding a Unicanitor mod 55 (unpadded, flexy nylon shell). Problems went away with a Brooks B17 or C17. Some saddles breathe, some don't. Find one that does.
This. (Based on multiple decades of experience.)
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Old 05-11-21, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Flip Flop Rider View Post
wear non padded shorts
Wear “gym shorts”, allows air flow in to keep things cooler.

Last edited by bikehoco; 05-11-21 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 05-11-21, 08:22 PM
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I ride in SoCal so it's pretty hot much of the time. I gave up on padded shorts. Since switching to merino wool boxer briefs and gravel/mtb type shorts it's been a huge improvement. Heck, half the time I come back from a ride I just hang out in the same gear for a while and never feel like I gotta rip it off like with padded shorts. Merino FTW!
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