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09/30/2015 04:20 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

This Might Be The Weirdest Deodorant Alternative Ever

By Kristie Dash, Allure

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(Photo: Romulo A Yanes)

Have you ever walked into a bar and then realized you completely forgot to apply deodorant before you left the house? Here's a really weird, kind of awesome solution: alcohol. And no, that's not just because it can dull the senses. In fact, you don't even need to drink it (though we're never ones to turn down a perfectly good cocktail). Vodka, tequila, and other hard liquors can actually work as a deodorant substitute when you apply them topically.

Yes, Ke$ha's "brush our teeth with a bottle of Jack" did immediately come to mind when we first heard this trick. But it kind of makes sense. We've already explored the ways tequila can help you MacGyver your way out of greasy hair and give you smoother skin. So why not use it as a makeshift deodorant in a pinch?

Quick refresher (no pun intended) on B.O.: "Sweat itself is odorless, but when it's broken down by bacteria on the skin, an unpleasant odor is released," says Joshua Zeichner, an assistant professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. "The alcohol content in vodka and other alcoholic beverages helps kill bacteria on the skin, including bacteria under the arms responsible for body odor."

Cosmetic chemist Jim Hammer compares the idea to using hand sanitizer, which contains approximately 60 percent alcohol. While vodka, tequila, gin, and other staple spirits in the 80- to 100-proof range contain around 40 or 50 percent alcohol, according to Hammer, they're still "effective antimicrobial germ-killing agents." (Don't pretend you never told yourself that while sharing a shot glass with a bunch of strangers back in college.)

A few words of advice: First, don't use the wrong mixer or garnish. A spritz or twist of lemon would be the only acceptable option, due to the fruit's citric acid and astringent effects. Stick with neat or straight-up drinks to avoid confusion and stickiness. Sugary underarms are never going to be fun. This trick should also be saved for post-work activities, unless you want to smell like you threw a frat party in your cubicle. And we're guessing you don't have a full bar in your office, Don Draper-style, anyway. Lastly--and this one is important, so listen up--don't ever try this if you've shaved recently. It will burn. Badly.

We'll leave it up to you to figure out how, exactly, to inconspicuously get the drink to the privacy of a restroom for discreet application. A totally random (and probably fairly messy) new use for alcohol? We'll cheers to that.

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