Natural Deodorant versus Dove and Secret: What's the big deal?

Posted by MDFloto on

If you are like me (and possibly millions of consumers) and are secretly terrified of social rejection based on body odor, you may have used Dove or Secret deodorants and anti-perspirants. For the last several years, I have enjoyed forgetting that my armpits even sweat or smell.

As we began to research the ingredients that top brands use, however, we were shocked to learn of potential risks to using these products. For example, common chemicals or substances used in Dove, Old Spice, and Secret products include:

* Aluminum
* Parabens
* Triclosan

The list of ingredients and side effects goes on, but these components are directly or indirectly linked to cancer, whether they themselves are carcinogens or alter your body's hormone production.

Fortunately, there are many alternatives to toxic products. Many bloggers have chronicled their experiences with terrible natural products that do not prevent noticeable body odor issues (and thus increase likelihood of rejection from human society, which the human brain registers as a threat comparable to death), so we were unsure of how this experiment would proceed.

For the last year, we have formulated, tested, and adjusted our recipes.


* Coconut oil
* Cocoa butter
* Shea butter
* Arrow root powder
* Corn starch
* Pinch of baking soda (only in the regular formulas, not the sensitive skin recipe)
* Essential Oils
* Beeswax

Don't just take our word on it, though. Look at the reviews on our Etsy shop. The benefits beeswax brings to skin are manifold, and several customers have reported increased softness of underarms after consistent deodorant application.

One issue that does come up is that these natural products are not designed as anti-perspirants. Biologically, underarm hair is supposed to wick bacteria out of your body as you sweat.

Researchers have presented somewhat conflicting conclusions as to the risk of cancer connected with underarm shaving and the resultant absorption of toxic ingredients in products, where the body cannot slough the toxins because the sweat glands are artificially plugged and there is no hair to drain sweat and bacteria.

Of course, your body's functions are unique based on gender, age, diet, location, heredity, and ethnicity. Shop around and see what works for you. It helps to expect your experience with natural products to be different, but there is also a beauty in letting your body be itself. We are human and we make a mess wherever we go, but some like to think it's a beautiful mess.

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