We live in a society obsessed with smelling good. The quickest way to become a social outcast is by having body odor or bad breath. Younger children are being encouraged to start using antiperspirant, increasing their exposure. We are applying these products multiple times a day over the course of a lifetime, and often after shaving. But is our obsession harming our health?
Years ago there were few deodorant choices on the drug store shelves. It was kind of a big deal when the first aerosol antiperspirant came out. Today the store shelves are filled with various brands and fragrances within those brands. How do we know that what we are using is safe?
Aluminum and parabens have come under scrutiny, and for every article you find claiming they are safe, there is another claiming they aren’t. According to breastcancerfund.org, parabens have been identified in biopsy samples from breast tumors. Antiperspirants often contain petroleum products and Triclosan. The other concern is synthetic fragrance. These ingredients are often not listed, as they are considered trade secrets. Even when the chemicals used in our personal care products are tested, they are not tested in combination with the chemicals in all the other products you are using.
It only makes sense to me to err on the side of caution, especially when it comes to our children. What we apply to our skin is absorbed into the body, and common sense would indicate if you apply right after shaving, even more will be absorbed.
Look for natural, aluminum free deodorants, like Neal’s Yard Remedies. Neal’s Yard Remedies has new, roll-on deodorants with a combination of shikimic acid, bamboo powder and essential oils, clinically proven to provide 24 hour protection. I’ve been using the Peppermint & Lime, and find it very effective. There is also a spray deodorant that has been very popular with my customers. Check them out here.
Not all deodorants work for everyone. In fact my grand-daughter is starting middle school and is required to have deodorant, but it cannot be a glass container, and all of Neal’s Yard Remedies are packaged in glass.
Make your own, switch to natural, there are options out there that won’t harm your health. When switching to a natural deodorant, I’d recommend you apply the deodorant two or three times a day for the first week, as your body adjusts to the sweat glands no longer being blocked. Whatever you choose, be careful about “greenwashing.” Manufacturers are very savvy when an ingredient is considered questionable in the media, and are quick to label their products “Aluminum Free” or “Paraben Free” when all they’ve done is replace on questionable ingredient with another.
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