As an Aromatherapist and Natural Skin Care Formulator, I am often asked this question. The simple answer is yes, but not for the reasons you might think.
What are the side effects of anti-perspirants?
Many of you will have read of the purported health risks of the aluminium in anti-perspirants. Do anti-perspirants cause cancer? Do anti-perspirants cause Alzheimer’s. Whilst I observe that these claims have been made, I also note that the claims/ data does merit much more extensive analysis.
My thoughts however are that, outside of these studies, if you can avoid putting aluminium into such a delicate and important area near the breast and lymph nodes, then why wouldn’t you? You can choose instead to use products with soothing natural ingredients. This is the benefit of natural deodorants.
Do Natural Deodorants work?
Well natural deodorants will not stop you sweating, so for me personally there is a time and a place for them. I would not for example wear them for a July wedding in Greece with a silk dress, but for everyday occasions, if you think about it, why would I not want to sweat toxins out? Why would I not want to perspire, isn’t that how nature designed your body to work?
There is of course the matter of not wanting to smell. Remember it is not sweat which smell but bacteria I have found that natural deodorants are effective when combined with washing every morning with a natural soap, drying the underarm and then applying. Even better make this routine a simple yet effective daily self-care ceremony for body and mind. You time.
I did find that when I stopped using anti persirants I did feel more sweaty for a few weeks - probably beacuse I had not been sweating for years.
After a few weeks however this reduced ,and I do not feel that I sweat as much as I did on those days when I forgot to apply an anti persirant. I feel that my body has adapted and returned to its natural rhythm.
What are Natural Deodorants made of?
Why are natural deodorants better? Examples of the types of ingredients you might find in natural deodorants are:
- Shea/Cocoa/Mango butter to soften and smooth.
- Plant oils such as coconut oil to nourish.
- Natural starch to absorb moisture.
- Clay to cleanse and absorb moisture.
- Sodium bicarbonate/ Magnesium hydroxide to deodorise.
- Essential oils which, with the right choice, can be deodorising, anti-bacterial and fragrant. Dependant on the mix, they might be uplifting, invigorating, or relaxing.
Is Sodium Bicarbonate bad for you?
There has been some controversy recently as to whether Sodium Bicarbonate is a safe ingredient in natural deodorants. Despite its scary name however, Sodium Bicarbonate is simply a natural salt. Some people have found that it does irritate them. Like anything, it does need to be introduced slowly. I have also found that there may be an overlap between the toxins which have previously been kept in by anti-perspirants coming out and these reacting with the Sodium Bicarbonate. This is why I would recommend going cold turkey (or hot turkey as the case may be!) for a couple of days when switching from traditional to natural.
If Sodium Bicarbonate does not agree with you then an alternative ingredient included in some natural deodorants is Magnesium Hydroxide,
You can choose between cream in pots which you put on with your finger or harder sticks in tubes. It really comes down to preference. I favour a stick.
My preferred products to date have been:
Your Nature- Stick
Green woman- Cream
Watch this space for Zelenci Natural Deodorant coming soon.