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Butt Budder, Powder, Creme, and Glide, Oh My!

June 3, 2010

Summertime is here, temperatures are on the rise and the riding season is in full swing. what better time to discuss the topic of chamois cream? The jokes and laughter in my office this morning remind me of my 5th grade health class. “Hey Carter! You got some issues we should talk about?” a co-worker exclaims after seeing the assortment of creams and glides on my desk. Jokes aside, skin beneath your chamois is some serious business. Let’s discuss.

So what is chamois cream and why do we need it?

Chamois cream is a skin lubricant used by cyclists and runners to reduce the effects of chafing from friction and protect against bacterial and fungal infections. Severe chafing can result in saddle sores. These sores are usually caused by ill-fitting gear, lack of proper padding or lubrication. With the help of just a little lubrication it is easy to avoid any kind of uncomfortable irritation.

tip: you should never wear underwear with your cycling shorts. Your cotton skivvies do not wick moisture, but hold it instead. Additionally, the extra layer of clothing between your body and the shorts can cause friction increasing your chances for problem areas.

I’m not planning on racing the tour or any other race for that matter. Do I need a chamois creme?

While chamois cream will make your cycling experience more pleasant, particularly on longer rides, there are plenty of other options to help you avoid chaffing or saddle sores. A properly fit bike and the right equipment (saddle and clothing) are very important in the reduction of friction. One of the most noticeable differences in comfort can be found with cycling specific clothing.

Contrary to popular belief cycling shorts don’t always equal spandex. Companies like Specialized, Fox, Endura, Mt. Borah and Pearl Izumi all make cycle specific shorts in a more casual baggy style.

I recently purchased a pair of Fox shorts for cruising the neighborhood with my son. These unassuming shorts have a padded liner just like my spandex bib shorts, but the exterior is more casual for leisurely riding.  I will typically rub chamois cream directly into the chamois which softens it.

The combination of chamois cream, proper fit and cycle specific apparel will never let you down when it comes to avoiding friction. It’s important to remember that no matter what you ride, where you ride it, or how far, you always have the option of comfort.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. George Cofer permalink
    June 8, 2010 11:56 am

    Purchased a pair of Fox and a pair of Pearl Izumi riding shorts recently at Bicycle Sports Shop. They are perfect for comfortable summer riding! george

  2. June 17, 2010 11:48 pm

    We’re glad you’re enjoying them George!

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