I get asked about deodorant on the daily, so I thought it best if I put this down in a blog....
How are your pits? How is your deodorant situation doing? If you think you may need to do a pit detox then please read the blog i wrote on it.
Ok so lets talk about sweat and the different types of deodorant and antiperspirants there are out there. You've heard it before but I'll just say it again, sweating is normal and necessary, when we sweat we release toxins. Sweat itself doesn't actually smell, its the bacteria under our arms that eats the sweat that causes the body odour.
There two types of sweat glands
Eccrine, found allover the body and the sweat released from these glands is made up of water and electrolytes (not much good stuff for the bacteria to feed on) As it releases it hits the air and cools us off (unless you live in Queensland but that's another story)
Apocrine, found mainly in the arm pits and groin the sweat from these glands is made up of water as well as fats and proteins (a feast for the bacteria) it's also called stress sweat, ever noticed you are more smelly before an interview, date, training for a big event, your period? Its all hormones and stress is the worst for smelly BO.
Antiperspirants: Come in a can, roll on, pump spray, creams... These use aluminium compounds to block up the sweat glands or constrict them, stopping the body from sweating (somewhat) and no sweat = no BO. The aluminium can come in different forms such as chlorohydrate or zirconium. One of the concerns with antiperspirants is the extra aluminium accumulating in our bodies, it is also important to note that we are exposed to aluminium everyday so by just avoiding antiperspirants you are still exposed to aluminium in our day to day lives. The other thing is, do we really want to stop our bodies from functioning in the way they were built to? Another way of looking at it is like this, women shave the underarm exposing fresh soft new skin, then plug their sweat glands with aluminium, and toxic ingredients like petroleum bi products and synthetic fragrances very close to you lymph nodes, then put on a tight fitting underwire bra. To me that sounds like something I'd rather avoid. There was a study done on young women over 10 years ago that is very interesting.
I do want to add that MOST antiperspirants/deodorants on the market (perhaps all but I do not know about all of them) DO NOT contain parabens anymore, yes once upon a time they did use them as a preservative but this is old practice. These parabens where being found in breast cancer tissues of women, because of this parabens were removed from underarm products. Not because they proved that parabens were causing breast cancer but because I suppose they didn't want to deal with the backlash? I don't actually know I'm only speculating. Also Triclosan is nasty ingredient (used most commonly in antibacterial products) but it is NOT readily found in underarm products, I think there is only a handful of brands who still use it. Unless it has another name that I'm not aware of?? I'm happy to be corrected!!
All this being said antiperspirants still do contain synthetic fragrances aka a toxic cocktail also known as phalates, they can damage your airways, immune system and seriously mess with your hormones......
Deodorant: These do not contain any aluminium and rely on the ingredients to neutralise the bodies odours, allowing the body to sweat normally. However a deodorant can still contain all of the other nasties.
Natural Deodorant: Totally free from aluminium, synthetic ingredients and petroleum bi products. They instead rely on ingredients like sodium bicarbonate to fully neutralise odours, the deodorant creme or paste style deodorants that contain the bicarb are the hardest working style of natural (I think all) deodorants on the market! I don't say that lightly and there many who agree, although there are lots of brands out there here is my favourite (obvs) The reason the creams are so effective is because the stay on your skin, meaning they do not evaporate like roll ons can plus you can really rub them in well.
Natural deodorants: come in all shapes and forms, roll on, pump sprays,creams, cream sticks, I've even seen powder. Not all natural deodorant uses bicarb as their active ingredient (because of the sensitivity it can cause to some people) some use witch hazel, aloe vera, magnesium, salt, apple cider vinegar, silver, essential oils and herbal extracts, arrowroot or corn flour, or a mixture of these. Some work better than others (some will say that some don't work at all) Everybody is different, that's why there is so many to choose from.
Crystal Stick deodorant: A controversial one perhaps? They don't need to be just buy them from health food shops or the Eumundi Medicine Man. The real ones (and there are plenty of synthetic ones out there) use real potassium alum as their active ingredient, they are fragrance free, clear and last about a year. The trick to using crystal deos is applying straight out of the shower other you miss the boat and are left at stinky station (lols) Alternatively you can wipe over you pits and reapply, in other words you can'y use it on already smelly skin and expect them to work. They are essentially providing a bacteria free environment for awhile or until you need to reapply, meaning no BO. Potassium Alum is NOT aluminium and will not build up in you body, if you want to know more about crystal deos check out this
Surgery or Botox: This is not something I'm very familiar with but I do know it is an option for excessive sweaters also known as severe axillary hyperhidrosis, it's where a plastic surgeon will remove your sweat glands. Botox injections are supposed to be a milder option and it lasts about 6 months (true story) This is something that would have to be diagnosed by a doctor and not something you would want to do lightly. Also known as "Don't go to Thailand and get your sweat glands removed"
Ok so there is a quick run down on all things deodorant and antiperspirant, I hope some of this helps explain a few things. I hope I have encouraged you to give antiperspirants the boot for good??
The amazing photography is supplied by Renee Bell