Have you fallen victim of the social stigma that is antiperspirant?
If so, you're not alone. We've been taught since we were knee-high that sweat is gross and stinky, and we should do our best to prevent it.
Enter toxin filled antiperspirant.
Big name companies have commercialized cleanliness to the point that we are putting toxic chemicals on ourselves just because we're "supposed to".
If you're ready to break the chemical chains and detox your body, this article is for you. Read on to learn why you should switch a to a natural deodorant now.
Difference Between Deodorant and Antiperspirant
Before we get started, it's important to note the difference between deodorant and antiperspirant. The fact that we typically use the term "deodorant" for both is very misleading because these products have very different goals.
Antiperspirant is primarily used to combat sweating. The problem is that antiperspirant doesn't actually stop sweat from happening, it merely blocks it. Toxic chemical ingredients are used to clog pores in your skin so that the sweat can't escape onto your clothes.
Deodorant, on the other hand, is used only to curb odor. Deodorant allows your body to sweat naturally, allowing the body to naturally flush out all of the odor-causing bacteria.
Let's Talk Benefits
There's a long list of benefits associated with switching over to natural deodorant.
Let's go over a few:
1. You'll Be Helping More Than Just Yourself
Before we go over all of the reasons switching to a natural deodorant can help you, we want to mention how it can help puppies.
You heard us right, by switching to an all-natural deodorant you'll be helping the puppies, monkeys, Guinea pigs, and all of the other animals the big drug companies test on.
The ban on animal testing is closer than ever, but it still hasn't fully passed. Until then, we can do our part in supporting the puppies.
2. Say Goodbye to Underarm Stains
How many shirts have you thrown away because of nasty pit stains?
Believe it or not, these stains aren't actually caused by sweat. Aluminum is the real culprit here.
Natural deodorant is aluminum free. Once you make the switch, you'll be amazed at how long of a lifespan your whites will have.
3. You're Supposed to Sweat
However annoying it may be, your body is supposed to sweat. Sweating is your body's natural way to excrete toxins and maintain homeostasis.
By blocking your sweat glands, you force those toxins to stay in your body and accumulate. What happens when those toxins build up? Toxin-eating bacteria start to grow.
4. What Smell?
That toxin-eating bacteria we just mentioned? It's what's responsible for the bad body odor you've been trying to prevent.
By wearing the antiperspirant in an effort to combat the BO, you're actually causing more BO. You end up in this forever BO loop.
When you switch to natural deodorant, you'll sweat more, sure, but your sweat won't smell bad anymore. Once you eliminate the built up sweat and toxins, the bacteria no longer have anything to feed off of, so they start to die off.
5. Your Skin Will Be Healthier
Many of the chemicals commercial antiperspirants use cause skin irritation, dryness, and much more. Once you cut out the harsh chemicals, you'll notice an immediate difference in the health of your skin.
You will feel more hydrated and you'll notice your skin become much softer.
FunFact: Are your underarms are a darker color than the rest of your body? This color change is caused by built-up bacteria. You should notice your skin begin to lighten in color once you make the switch.
6. No More Annoying White Streaks
How many times have you put on your favorite black dress, went out with a cute guy, and realized halfway through your date that you're covered in white deodorant streaks?
Ladies don't always talk about it, but it happens to all of us. Since natural deodorant is made with different ingredients than the drugstore antiperspirant, switching to a natural deodorant will eliminate the annoying white streaks.
How to Make the Switch
Before you take the leap of faith and say goodbye to your antiperspirant, it's important to do it the right way. Going straight from your regular antiperspirant to your new natural deodorant can cause some unwanted side effects like skin irritation, dryness, bumps, and even swelling.
Use these tips to help you make the switch swiftly and safely:
The first thing you'll need to do is give your body a chance to detoxify itself. You've probably been using the same antiperspirant for years, which means you've got years of built-up aluminum and other chemicals to clear up.
Your body will naturally detoxify itself, so there's no need for expensive masks or creams.
Exfoliating your skin can help your body with the detoxification process. Your pores have been clogged for so long that they may need a little help opening back up. Use a natural exfoliant like Epsom salts or brown sugar to carefully unclog stubborn pores.
Stick With Natural Fibers During Your Detox
Expect to sweat a lot during your switch. Your body finally has a chance to clean itself up, so it's going to wash all of the toxins away as quickly as it can.
How does it do this? You guessed it, sweat.
Try to stick with natural clothing fibers like wool or cotton. Fibers like polyester can trap in moisture and cause that same odor-causing bacteria to grow.
Give it Time
The best thing that you can do to help your body detox is to give it time. Your body is a beautiful, hard-working machine and it will do its job, just don't rush it. Go deodorant free for a few days and let your body perform its magic.
If you're worried about odor during your detox, try adding a little bit of lemon to your exfoliant. Lemon is a natural antibacterial and has a long-lasting fresh scent.
Make sure that you drink plenty of water to replace what is lost through your sweat.
Common Toxic Ingredients in Your Drugstore Antiperspirants
We've been talking about all of these toxic ingredients, but what exactly are they? Just like many other commercialized products, drugstore antiperspirant is filled with unnatural, toxic ingredients.
Let's go over a few of those toxic ingredients and their side effects:
Aluminum - Aluminum is a common ingredient in commercial antiperspirants. The aluminum is the chemical used to clog your pores. Aluminum is linked to skin irritation, Alzheimer's disease, and cancer.
Triclosan - Triclosan is used for antibacterial purposes. It has been banned in several countries, however, Canada is still in debate on its legality. Triclosan is linked to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, muscle weakness, and skin irritation.
Silica - Silica is used to absorb moisture from sweat. Silica is linked to skin and lung irritation, dryness, and cancer.
Steareths - This is used to keep the deodorant or antiperspirant from separating. It is linked to endocrine disruption, reproductive toxicity, and skin irritation.
Parabens - Parabens (methyl, ethyl, propyl, benzyl, and butyl) are linked to reproductive disorders, premature aging, endocrine disruption, and cancer.
Phthalates - Listed as a "fragrance", phthalates are known to be absorbed into the body and confused for estrogen. This can lead to infertility, birth defects, breast or ovarian cancer.
Propylene Glycol - PG is used to create a silky, smooth texture. While it's not known to be harmful by itself, PG can act as an absorption enhancer, meaning that it increases the body's absorption rates of all those other bad chemicals.
Of course, the list of toxic chemicals is much longer, but this isn't a chemistry lesson. We just want you to be familiar with the biggest and the badest.
Common Ingredients in Your Natural Deodorant
Now, let's talk about the ingredients you'll find in natural deodorants. You'll notice that this list is significantly smaller.
Baking Soda - Baking soda is used to neutralize odor and absorb moisture. Contrary to aluminum, baking soda does not block your pores.
Coconut Oil - Coconut oil is used to create the same smooth silky texture that as a PG, however, it is also used as an antibacterial agent and moisturizer.
Essential Oils - These could be lemongrass, tea tree, rosemary, pink grapefruit, and much more. Each essential oil is responsible for its own purpose. Tea tree oil, for example, is used for dry, itchy skin, and has antibacterial properties. Lavender, on the other hand, is helpful in treating acne, stress relief, and even wound healing.
Different natural deodorant brands will have different ingredients, so you'll want to look for a brand that uses these three primary ingredients.
What Will You Choose?
Don't think that once you choose the natural route you're limited to boring, scent free deodorants. There are tons of different products to pick from (Lovefresh, Routine, Penny Lane Organics, Crawford Street Skin Care). Do you prefer deodorant sticks or lotions? Why not both? Would you love to smell like a fresh-picked orange? Or fresh as a flower with lavender?
All of these and more are possible with natural deodorants. If you can't decide on your favorite, why not have them all with a variety pack? Feel free to check out our many options today!
Remember, it's your choice -- your way.