There’s a strong funny smell coming from my genital area and I think it’s coming from my pubes, but I’m scared to shave. I’ve tried using creams, powder, and deodorant but nothing works! I clean good down there every morning in the shower.

Thank you for your question! It can definitely be very frustrating if you have an odor coming from your genital area that doesn’t seem to go away even with good hygiene. Most odors are the natural result of sweating, and since your groin is covered with clothing and doesn’t have the best air circulation, the area tends to stay very warm and can become moist as well. Unfortunately, warm and moist areas can sometimes provide an ideal environment for growth of different organisms such as fungus and bacteria, which can lead to development of different odors and even skin rash. But you don’t have to shave your pubic hair or use deodorant or creams down there to stop the odor! In fact, the best way to stay clean is to take daily showers or baths using warm water and soap, making sure to wash in between the folds or creases of your skin and pubic hair, and completely drying the area before putting on clean, breathable underwear. We highly recommend that you use lightweight cotton briefs or boxer-briefs, instead of underwear made of thicker material, to allow for improved air circulation. Some people will benefit from using a body powder such as Gold Bond® or an antifungal powder such as Nystatin, which can help to keep the groin region dry and prevent the growth of fungus in the area (Nystatin has to be prescribed by your health care provider). Guys who are not circumcised need to remember to wash the area beneath their foreskin by gently pulling it back every time they shower or bathe. If you are very active, play sports, or sweat a lot, you may need to take a second shower after gym class or when you get home from school or practice. In rare cases, an odor can also be caused by a sexually transmitted infection (STI), so if you are sexually active, it’s a good idea to check in with your health care provider to make sure you don’t have an STI. If you do, there is treatment available.