Baby Powder on Balls – Does it Stop Sweat and Odor?

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Article updated: April 26, 2023

So you want to dust your nutsack in baby powder because you think it’ll help prevent sweat and odor.

Do you plan on wearing a diaper too while you’re at it?

The truth is, baby powder is actually a pretty effective method of preventing ball funk, sweat, chafing, and discomfort – as long as you don’t mind smelling like a fresh diaper of course.

A bottle of Johnson and Johnson baby powder

And while there are much better ball powders actually designed for men out there, none are quite as inexpensive as baby powder is – which usually only costs a few bucks.

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The secret to baby powder’s ability to deodorize a ball sack and help prevent sweat and chafing all comes down to its two main ingredients – fragrance and talc.

What is Talc?

Talc is a very soft, naturally occurring clay mineral that is mined from underground deposits all over the world.

In its natural state, talc is pearly white and slightly translucent in color. And since it’s the softest known mineral on earth, it’s easily crushed into a fine powder.

A line of "talc" powder on a black surface.
It’s a friend’s talc

While talc has a ton of uses in cosmetics, food, and the drug industry, I’m going to keep it simple and just focus on its ball sack benefits for us guys. After all, what’s more important than that, right?

In order to understand how our funky and sweaty nuts can benefit from the use of talc, it’s important to discuss why the original developers of baby powder (Johnson & Johnson) used it as the primary ingredient in the first place.

As you can probably imagine, the inside of a diaper is a hot, humid environment and the source of a lot of friction, chafing, and discomfort for a baby’s delicate skin.

To combat this issue, Johnson & Johnson formulated their first batch of baby powder in 1894 using talc as the main ingredient.

A piece of talc deposit

Talc is not only great at absorbing sweat and excess moisture, but it also reduces friction, chafing, itch, and even helps cool and soothe the skin. Sort of a baby’s dream come true (probably).

Fast forward to today and baby powder is still used in households all across the world – even when there is no baby present.

That’s because many men have grown wise to the benefits of baby powder and are using it to alleviate a lot of the problems that having a pair of balls presents – namely sweat, odor, chafing, and discomfort.

Is Baby Powder Safe for Balls?

Black and yellow caution tape

So we established that baby powder is an effective solution for eliminating many of the uncomfortable crotch problems that us men suffer from. The question now is: is it a safe solution?

I don’t know if you noticed, but baby powder’s main ingredient talc sort of has a bad rap when it comes to skincare and grooming products.

In fact, it’s not at all uncommon to see package labels proudly state that the product inside is in fact talc free:

So what’s up with that? Why all the hate for talc suddenly? People have been covering their babies butts in the stuff for well over a hundred years and now it’s suddenly considered unsafe?

Is this like the whole gluten-free thing?

As it turns out, concerns over the safety of talc actually have some credibility to them.

But the problem isn’t with talc itself. The problem is that talc based products have been found to contain traces of cancer causing asbestos. Specifically ovarian cancer and cervical cancer in women.

The problem is that talc and asbestos are two minerals that naturally form together. They are very similar in composition and it’s not uncommon to find veins of asbestos mixed with underground talc deposits.

So basically talc, which is 100% safe, has been found to contain traces of asbestos, which is 100% unsafe.

Well that sucks.

And even though testing for asbestos in talc has become much more stringent (per government regulations), the most recent recall was in 2019 when the FDA discovered asbestos contamination in a bottle of Johnson & Johnson Baby Powder.


As of 2020, Johnson & Johnson announced that they will no longer be manufacturing any baby powder that contains talc. A look at their ingredient list indicates that they have substituted cornstarch in place of talc. There are still some companies out there that produce baby powder using talc as the main ingredient. Check the ingredient list before purchasing if you’re concerned about the safety of talc.

Alternatives to Baby Powder

So the health risks of using baby powder on your balls has you a bit freaked out, huh? Don’t worry, there are tons of really great alternatives to baby powder that are completely safe and specifically designed for men like us.

Ball Powder

If you’re dead set on using a powder to keep your balls fresh, I recommend you try out one of the many ball powders for men that have been hitting the market in the past few years.

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Most of theses new body powders use talc alternatives like corn starch, baking soda, and arrowroot powder to effectively eliminate sweat, odor, friction, skin irritation, and discomfort.

You’ll also find that many of these powders contain cooling ingredients like menthol, peppermint, and eucalyptus to keep the entire crotch region cool and refreshed. It’s kind of like air conditioning for the nutsack (or wherever on your body you choose to apply it).

Ball Deodorant

If ball powder isn’t your thing, there are a bunch of awesome deodorants for men’s balls available too.

Unlike powder, ball deodorant is less messy, easy to apply, and it’s just as effective at keeping ball sweat, odor, friction, and discomfort at bay.

While ball deodorants come in a few different varieties, the most popular ones tend to be in the form of creams, lotions, and sprays.

Proper Hygiene

Powders and deodorants are great, but the first step to keeping balls smelling fresh is found in your personal hygiene habits.

Any guy with a pair of balls will tell you, it doesn’t take much for the crotch region to be overthrown by sweat and odor.

While it can be very frustrating, annoying, and embarrassing – it’s important to understand exactly what happens down there when the stink starts.

Believe it or not, sweat itself is virtually odorless to humans. The problem is that bacteria – which is always present on the skin – thrives in warm, moist environments. So when your balls start sweating – bacteria get the party started like it’s 1999.

Bacteria feeds on the sweat that your body produces and basically turns your ballsack into an all you can eat buffet/feeding frenzy. Think Golden Corral on Mother’s Day when they bring out a fresh tray of crab legs.

So while bacteria is chowing down on crab legs your sweat like there is no tomorrow, they begin forming these by-products called thioalcohols, which have scents similar to eggs, onion, broccoli, meat, and cheese. Yummy.

So if you were paying attention, it would make sense that the first step to reducing ball funk is to obliterate as much of the bacteria on your skin as possible, right?

Luckily this isn’t as hard as it may sound. While there are some really effective soaps and washes for men’s balls, sometimes all you need is a washcloth, soap, and a little bit of elbow grease to get the job done right.

While I’m not specifically calling your hygiene habits into question, the fact is that many men don’t wash their balls as well as they may think.

Utilizing a washcloth or a loofa in the shower will provide enough scrubbing power to exfoliate odor causing bacteria from your balls – effectively keeping you smelling fresher for longer down there.

Questions & Answers (Reader Submitted)

I used baby powder on my balls for years, could I be at risk for cancer?

While I’m certainly no doctor, I will say that the likelihood of you experiencing any ill effects, namely cancer, from using baby powder on your balls is likely nil. As it currently stands, the only ones at risk from asbestos contaminated talc powders are women and even that is considered extremely unlikely.

If you are worried about it (you really shouldn’t be) I suggest checking out this article from WebMD.

How do you effectively apply body powder to your balls (groin)?

Applying ball powder to your nut sack isn’t exactly rocket science, but I get it, you want to know the best way to apply it to optimize its performance. Makes sense.

Well the first thing you need to do is make sure your balls are clean and dry before applying. Applying ball powder to your nuts after showering is the best way to go if possible. Most ball powders provide hours of sweat and odor management so applying in the morning should last you most of the day. If you need to reapply throughout the day, I say go for it. No harm, no foul, right?

In regards to the best application method, there really is no wrong way to apply powder to your balls. You can dump some powder into your hand and kind of teabag your palm.

Or you can simply sprinkle powder down the front of your underwear and let it work its way into the cracks and crevices of your groin naturally.

One of my readers even suggested using a small brush (like a makeup brush) to work the powder wherever you want it without making a mess. I thought that was a pretty good idea.

There really is no right or wrong answer in this situation. As long as your balls are covered in the stuff, I say you are golden.

Is talcum powder safe?

Body powder is often referred to as “talc powder” or “talcum powder” even if it contains talc or not. Nowadays most body powders use cornstarch or other powders in place of talc due to the negative reputation that talc has developed over the years.

As I mentioned in this article, body powders that do not contain talc are 100% safe to use for both men and women.

Body powders that do contain talc (talc powder or talcum powder) do pose a small degree of health risk for women.

Thank you for reading. If you found this article helpful, be sure to check out my article discussing in greater detail how to eliminate ball sweat and odor. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to drop me a line in the comment section below.