It hit me that now was as great a time as any to shed some light on some toxin-free armpit-friendly options for all of you who are looking to start reducing your chemical exposure.
So why worry about what is in your deodorant? Well, all of the compounds we use on our armpits are readily absorbed into our bloodstream near some key areas. Our precious pitties have some very important (axillary) nodes that filter most of the liquid lymph (fluid from our immune system) flowing out of the breast before it goes back into the body's bloodstream. These nodes are under the arm, in the upper outer quadrant of the breast, and near the collarbone.
Specific ingredients (listed below) in commonly used deodorants and antiperspirants have been found to create an estrogen-like effect on the body and because estrogen can promote the growth of both cancer and non-cancer breast cells, some scientists have suggested that using antiperspirants that contain aluminum and these compounds may be a risk factor for the development of breast cancer.
Although they have not pinpointed a direct cause and effect relationship between antiperspirant use and breast cancer, we do know for certain that over time and with multiple different exposure points to these ingredients (think about all of the body products you use in a given day) we see an increase in one's overall "toxic load" or total accumulation of the chemicals in the body.
Top ingredients to avoid:
I've rounded up my top 5 pit-friendly options for you to safely get your sweat on - just remember that those that contain baking soda may cause mild irritation for those with highly sensitive skin!
2.6 oz, $24.00 USD
This is generally my go-to option especially during winter/fall because during the day I don't tend to sweat much (minus working out) and I find this does the trick until the end of the day. I actually discovered this deodorant on a trip to California 2 years ago and have been faithfully using it ever since. My first stick lasted me a full year before I had to repurchase! It's got a non-gritty, translucent formula that includes vitamin e, chamomile, which hazel, and a few other plant extracts that are great for sensitive skin. The scent is a subtle floral-citrus or for those of you who are familiar, the signature kai-scent.
If you are more active or tend to be a heavy sweater this may not be the best option for you. Baking soda free.
Ingredients: butylene glycol, glycerin, water, sodium stearate, hamamelis virginiana (witch hazel) water, peg-40 hydrogenated castor oil, fragrance, tocopherol, phenoxyethanol, bisabolol, alcohol, citronellol, geraniol, hexyl cinnamal, linalool, benzyl salicylate, butyphenyl methylpropional.
2oz, $14.00 USD
A cult favourite, Soapwalla’s Citrus Deodorant Cream utilizes superfine vegetable powders and clays and a combination of citrus essential oils, which absorb moisture, inhibit bacteria, and ensure a long-lasting wear. You apply this formula with your fingertips and the frosting-like consistency allows for easy application and absorption, and is ideal for all skin types. I personally loved the citrus version of this deodorant but you can also find it in unscented.
Contains baking soda.
Ingredients: Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea) Butter*, Zea Mays (Corn) Starch*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Seed Oil*, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil*, Sodium Bicarbonate*, Rosa Rubiginosa (Rosehip) Seed Oil*, Lecithin*, Glycerin*, Cymbopogon Flexuosus (Lemongrass) Herb Oil*, Kaolin, Tocopherol*, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergaptene-free Bergamot) Fruit Oil*, Citrus Aurantifolia (Lime) Peel Oil, Citrus Paradisi (Grapefruit) Peel Oil, Litsea Cubeba (May Chang) Fruit Oil*, Vanilla Planifolia (Vanilla) Fruit Extract. *Certified Organic Ingredient
1.7oz, $20.00 USD
With a unique coconut oil base I like this deodorant because it's almost a hybrid between the Kai and Soapwalla options. It's a stick application similar to Kai and transparent going on, with a little bit of grit and drying properties similar to Soapwalla.The scent is very pleasant and light, with a sweet eucalyptus and honey base. Also suitable for sensitive skin although does contain baking soda.
Ingredients: Organic coconut oil, sodium bicarbonate, beeswax, sunflower butter, avocado butter, castor oil, raw organic honey, lavender essential oil, hydrogen peroxide, eucalyptus oil.
Unisex 3.4oz, $12.95 CAD
I purchased this a few months ago after being in a Saje store, looking for an alternative to my beloved Kai stick for something that would hold up against a little bit of a higher activity level. The lovely sales associate educated me on how the active ingredient, liquid mineral salts, fights unwanted smells by neutralizing odour-causing bacteria rather than just merely masking it as well as helps keep the moistness down. I personally love unisex scents and was more drawn to the rich, earthy blend of rosewood, sandalwood, lime, and lavender.
This bad boy lasts all day, as well as after a serious sweat session. Baking soda free.
Ingredients: potassium alum (liquid mineral salts); essential oils of cymbopogon martini (palmarosa), aniba rosaeodora (rosewood), santalum album (sandalwood), lavandua angustifolia (lavender), citrus aurantifolia (lime), pogostemon cablin (patchouli), foeniculum vulgare dulce (fennel) and vetivera zizanoides (vetiver).
Unisex 1.69oz, $20.00 USD
This roll-on formula is clean, fresh, and fairly effective at a long lasting odour control. You have to wait a little before the formula dries, but when it does this baby is there for the long haul. It's a unisex formula, so no super floral notes either. Contains baking soda.
Ingredients: Aqua, Potassium Alum, Triethyl Citrate*, Glycerine*, Sodium Bicarbonate, Xanthan gum, Glyceryl Caprylate*, Sodium Levulinate*, Sodium Anisate*, Aniba roseaodora wood oil*, Cupressus sempervirens leaf oil*, Aroma from essential oils: Linalol, Limonen, Geraniol, Benzyl Benzoate
*Certified organic ingredients
Do you have a natural deodorant you swear by that wasn't mentioned? I'd love your feedback!
Questions? Comments? Collaboration ideas? Let's chat!
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