I remember the first time I used deodorant. I was twelve and spending the afternoon over at Lisa Burns’ house. She told me, in a polite way, that I stunk. Then she offered me some of her baby powder fresh scented antiperspirant, and I was hooked. I read the warning on the label about Alzheimer’s (or maybe I found out about that later), and decided that when faced with the prospect of smelling funky, I would take my chances with disease and smell good. (The priorities of a tween, I tell ya!)
Over the years, I’ve tried a few different natural deodorant products to go natural. I didn’t try them because I wanted to…no, I tested so many because I needed them. New babies plus not showering is not a good combination for body odor. No bueno. But I never really found one that didn’t make me smell funky…until now.
Me out for a walk today with my son – smelling good. Haha!
So, why do you need natural deodorant?
First, like I found out in Lisa Burns’ bedroom all those years ago, antiperspirants are toxic to your body. Your body is designed to sweat. Sweat is healthy. Antiperspirant blocks your body’s ability to sweat using chemicals like aluminum that are flat-out not good for you when absorbed through the skin. They clog your pores and don’t allow you to naturally release toxins the way nature intended.
But won’t you smell if you don’t use antiperspirant?
No. Sweat isn’t the thing that smells. Sweat is water plus the salt released from your body naturally. The thing that smells are the naturally occurring bacteria on your skin that mix with water. Instead of clogging your pores to keep you from sweating (like antiperspirants do), natural deodorants change the reaction that happens when you DO sweat. Sweat is actually good for your body.
When you use antiperspirant, sweat builds up underneath your skin (because it’s blocked from coming out). That is one of the main reasons that people get bumpy skin under their armpits. If you get razor burn there or have irritated underarms after shaving, that could be why.
Not to mention, when your skin is blocked because of antiperspirant use, the bad bacteria cannot come out so your body absorbs it. And the aluminum compounds in antiperspirant can cause your clothes to stain. Yuck.
What you want is a deodorant with ingredients you can pronounce. One that doesn’t have parabens, or hormone disrupters. One that’s naturally made for sensitive skin.
Of course, there are some natural deodorants on the market that are terrible. I could list them right here (I’m not going to – but let’s just say that they exist and I’ve wasted lots of money on them.)
The thing is – everybody has a different body chemistry, so you won’t know what a deodorant smells like on your skin until you try it on. The deodorant reacts with YOUR body, and you are not made like anybody else. That makes it hard to find new deodorants you like…depressing, right?!
So, what are you supposed to do?
It’s important to look at the ingredients in the deodorant, and see what’s in there…and read the reviews. If a deodorant has a lot of bad reviews, you know it’s probably NOT going to work that great on anybody. If, on the other hand, it has thousands of positive reviews…you’re much more likely to find a winner!
A few tips:
Go natural for a few days before you make the switch to natural deodorant. Your body needs time to rid itself of the chemicals under your skin from antiperspirant. If you can’t bear a few days without deodorant, no biggie. It will just take your body a little longer to adjust to the change.
Exfoliate underneath your arms at least once/week. It helps get rid of dead skin and bacteria. Even better, try dry brushing.
Try to wear natural fibers when you can (like cotton and silk). Your body will thank you!
Find a deodorant with a free return policy – so if it stinks (literally) – you don’t have to keep it! One company I’ve found that has a generous free return policy is Native Cosmetics – they offer free shipping AND free returns on all their products.
That’s the brand I use, actually. I bought the Sample Pack because it has my three favorite varieties in it: Unscented, Coconut & Vanilla, and Lavender & Rose.
Since I made the switch, I’ve noticed my underarms are so much smoother, and I never get razor burn there anymore. Plus, I just feel healthier. I’ve come a long way since baby powder antiperspirant in Lisa Burns’ bedroom. 🙂
Have you tried natural deodorant before? What is your favorite scent?
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