How do you tell someone they have bad breath/smelly armpits and other embarrassing things?

How do you tell someone they have bad breath/smelly armpits and other embarrassing things?


First step, observation: do they work in a laborious or a long hours job? What’s their eating habits like? Do they seem happy? Second step, conversations and relationship: do you know this person well enough AND do you have enough social credit (do you two find it easy for general conversation and jokes or are you two people in an office who hate each other). This will depend on how you approach them about it: talking with them, talking through HR, or talking with one of their close friends to have that conversation. Not a lot of people are aware they have bad breath etc. There are many hidden and overt signs to contribute: - are they depressed? - can they afford basic hygiene? - are they aware of it? - do other people recognise it or is it you alone? - would they care? That should give you enough information to figure out how to converse with them about it


As someone who has dealt with this scenario with a loved one, this is really good advice. Pick this answer.


It’s good to see an intuitive and empathetic person responding to this.


Some great advice from OP, I'm just going to add this little bit here because sometimes the person is aware of the smell and can't do anything about it. Several medical conditions can cause these types of issues. For example, GERD, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, can cause a person's breath to smell like shit, like literal shit. No amount of brushing or gum is going to fix it because of the stomach acid coming up in the esophagus. Same with foul body odor, it can be a sign of kidney or liver disease, both can lead to excessive sweating which causes BO. Some cancers and other serious medical conditions can cause bad breath or body odor, hell sometimes these smells can be a first sign that something may be medically wrong. On another note, if you notice any sudden change in your own smells, and you can't find any logical explanation as to why you suddenly smell like you ate 5 pounds of garlic or ran 5 miles in the desert, you may want to consider talking to a medical professional.


A failing liver has a distinct odor on someone's breath. If I recognize it, I simply tell the person, stranger or casual acquaintance "your liver is failing, you should consider seeing a doctor." with NO MENTION of the odor. It's great because I'm just written off as some crazy stranger- who isn't necessarily insulting- and a conversation never starts from it, but it might be the only inkling or feedback they get that would actually lead them to see a doctor.


if it was a friend. I'd say bro your breath smells like rotting ass here's some listerine. if it was a stranger I'd offer a mint. if it was a co-worker I'd try to gently bring it up and mint if that doesn't work possibly hr.


Have a mint and then offer them one


You take them aside, quietly and politely let them know, assure them it's a common problem and maybe offer an anecdote of your own so they don't feel alone.


"YOU STINK, TAKE A GOD DAMN SHOWER YOU FILTH" This is how my friends and I discreetly and politely tell eachother in public.


Would you like a peace of mint/gum? A mint is more obvious!


By telling them their hygiene fucking sucks


honesty is the best policy


Walking away and staying away speaks volumes.


(Reads answers in this post) ...Well shit, guess following them around while making loud gagging noises and holding my nose until they cry or assault me is not very proactive after all...


“Hey Pepe le Pew! We’re tryin to breathe over here. Why don’t you go for a swim in a kiddie pool full of listerine or something?”


"it's not the smell, it's that burning in my eyes!" But only if you know that person well enough to be sure that they can laugh about it and understand it


"Dude, go *[brush your teeth | take a shower | ...].*"


You have bad breath and smelly armpits


"Ohh, what a warm day is today. Hey, how about we go take a shower to freshen up, you go first"


Just tell em when you have a moment alone with them. Lot less embarassing then leavibg then none the wiser whilst everyone else knows


You don't that's rude.


Smelling bad is rude too.


damn. didnt really think about that


That’s true it’s a stranger but if it’s a friend I’d say it’s ruder to let them go unknowing