Photo credit: Flickr
I hate to break it to you, but the deodorant you are using is probably really bad for you. 😷
Let’s start by taking a look at a popular brand of deodorant and the ingredients.
Ingredients: Aluminum Zirconium Trichlorohydrex Gly, Cyclopentasiloxane, Stearyl Alcohol, C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate, PPG-14 Butyl Ether, Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Petrolatum, Phenyl Trimethicone, Talc, Cyclodextrin, Fragrance, Mineral Oil, Behenyl Alcohol
(click on each ingredient to read more about it)
There is literally nothing “natural” about these ingredients (can you even pronounce some of those?). Think Dirty gave this deodorant a 9. That’s pretty bad. Similar to the ingredients mentioned in my Toxic Ingredients post, many of these ingredients are either cancer-causing, endocrine disruptors, or toxic to your body.
Men, you aren’t off the hook either. Your deodorant is equally bad. 🏃
Avoid Aluminum and Antiperspirants in Your Deodorant
Aside from the fact that the ingredients listed above are horrible for you, I’m going to focus on the first one: Aluminum. The majority of antiperspirants contain aluminum, which is used to “block” the sweat glands and prevent sweat from coming to the skin’s surface. But aluminum is a neurotoxin and is extremely toxic to the body. It has been linked with many types of cancers and other diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
And even worse, when you shave your armpits, it leaves tiny cuts in your skin, which gives more openings for these harmful ingredients to soak into.
Our bodies are designed to sweat. It’s not natural to totally block it – those toxins gotta get out somehow and your armpits are one of the major areas that they come out. If you are constantly blocking toxins, where do they go? They stay in your body. Continued use of antiperspirants and aluminum will cause a build-up of toxins in your body. And the closest areas to your armpits – your lymph nodes and breast tissue – are where those toxins will go first. In addition, aluminum can have an estrogenic effect and increase the levels of that hormone in your body, which leads to the growth of breast cancer cells. There have been SO many studies about this and they show that antiperspirants and aluminum lead to breast cancer. I have even heard that when you are diagnosed with breast cancer you are told to switch to deodorant that doesn’t contain aluminum.
Continued use of antiperspirants and aluminum will cause a build-up of toxins in your body.
Myth: Natural Deodorant Doesn’t Work
I know what you’re thinking, there is nooooooo way natural deodorant works. Well, I am here to tell you that, yes, it does! 💪
But the key is to be patient. Just think, all that time you’ve been using antiperspirants, your body has been holding in those toxins. You need to allow those toxins to come out naturally. Literally, sweat them out. So the first day you use a natural deodorant and you’re stinky or sweaty, don’t give up. It will get better after your body detoxes and things adjust back to normal.
You may have to apply natural deodorant mid-day, but is that really a big deal? (I can usually go a full day without reapplying, but everyone sweats differently.) I would much rather take two seconds to reapply deodorant than to compromise my health.
My Favorite Natural Deodorants (Yes, they work!)
Bella Organics Deodorant Sticks • $12
My absolute favorite deodorant. It goes on easily, smells great, and lasts all day. The Lemongrass scent is my favorite.
Ingredients: Organic Shea Butter, Organic Arrowroot Powder, Organic Coca butter, Organic Beeswax Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Aluminum-Free Baking Soda, Organic Lemongrass Essential Oil, Organic Bergamot Essential Oil, Organic Orange Essential Oil
(they also have a deodorant cream “for men” that my husband uses and really likes, but I’m sure any of these will work well for men)
Schmidt’s Deodorant Sticks • $9
I love these as well. Not as creamy as Bella Organics, but still very easy to apply and last throughout the day. You can find these at most health food stores or Whole Foods. Most of these have a 0 on Think Dirty 👍
Ingredients: Maranta arundinacea (arrowroot) powder, Cocos Nucifera (coconut) Oil, Euphorbia Cerifera (candelilla) Wax, Butyrospermum parkii (shea butter), Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), Triglyceride (fractionated coconut oil), Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Citrus bergamia (bergamot) essential oil, Citrus aurantifolia (lime) essential oil, Tocopherol (vitamin E)
Nourish Organic Deodorant Sticks • $10
Also very easy to apply and creamy. I have noticed myself having to reapply these more often than the two options above, but still very effective and smell great. I have seen these in stores as well. Score is 0 on Think Dirty!
Ingredients: Organic Zea Mays (Corn) Starch, Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf (Aloe Vera) Juice, Organic SDA 38B (Alcohol Denat.), Organic Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Organic Saccharomyces Ferment, Organic Euterpe Oleracea (Acai) Fruit Oil, Organic Soy Lecithin, Organic Oryza Sativa (Rice) Bran Extract, Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda), Xanthan Gum, Organic Glycerin, Organic Theobroma Grandiflorum (Cupuaçu) Butter, Organic Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, Organic Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Organic Fragrance, Tocopherol (Vitamin E)
PiperWai Charcoal Creme Deodorant • $12
PiperWai works just as effectively as the Bella Organics version above, it is just not as “creamy.” But still easy to apply (although you have to use your finger to apply instead of a roll-on). It lasts all day and does a great job preventing odor. It’s made with activated charcoal which can absorb 1,000x its own weight in moisture.
Ingredients: Tapioca Starch, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Magnesium Hydroxide, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Rose Centifolia Flower Water, Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel) Water, Tocopherol Acetate (Vitamin E), Sodium Bicarbonate (Baking Soda), Charcoal Powder (Activated), Lonicera Caprifolium (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract*, Lonicera Japonica (Honeysuckle) Flower Extract*, Proprietary Blend of 11 Essential Oils *100% plant-based, paraben-free, natural preservative
Try Natural Deodorant for Yourself
You use deodorant every day, if not multiple times a day. So think twice about what you’re putting on your pits. There are tons of options out there that do work! Don’t give up right away if one doesn’t work for you, try another one. I challenge you to swap your deodorant for something safer. 😎
Another great video by Realfoodology about the dangers of aluminum and antiperspirants in deodorant: