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As the U.S. reopens, Americans are buying a lot of deodorant

May 24, 2021, 9:42 PM UTC

So long sourdough starter! Americans are getting ready to mingle again—and they’re rushing to the beauty aisle as those days draw near.

Just like the rush on toilet paper and hand sanitizer a year ago, people are grabbing deodorant, teeth whitener and condoms off of store shelves, The Wall Street Journal reports. Also on the rise are sales of perfume, nail polish, and alarm clocks.

The good news is, there aren’t shortages of these products, like the ones we faced last year.

Some of the surging sales items are what you’d expect as spring turns into summer—swimsuits, suntan lotion, luggage. But it’s the size of the surge that’s notable. Alarm clock sales doubled last month at Walmart and luggage sales quadrupled.

Grooming became less of a priority for people during the long stay-at-home period. Many people began bathing less and the inability to get a haircut in many parts of the country led to some shaggy looks. Shaving, for both men and women, became an irregular thing – and the emphasis was on comfort.

Now, though, as in-person interactions become a thing, we’re cleaning up for each other. Hair products are selling more – and razors are becoming more en vogue.

“Condoms, dry shampoo, power flossers and women’s grooming are expected to deliver year-over-year growth as society opens up and consumers have greater mobility,” said Church & Dwight Co. CEO Matt Farrell on an analyst call last month. That seems to be proving true. NielsenIQ data shows that sales of sexual health products, including condoms, were up 32% for the week ended May 1, says the Journal.

Baking goods and toilet paper? Those are on the wane. Sales of flour and other baking goods were down 35.6% in the four-week period prior to May 1. Toilet paper sales were down 18.3%. 

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