Deodorant is one of the personal-care essentials. It lets us feel comfortable protecting not so much against sweating, but against bacteria and odor. We use it every day all year round but are we aware of the possible health hazards? Read about 3 dangerous ingredients that are (but shouldn’t be) added to most deodorants.
Why do we sweat?
Using a metaphor, sweat is like an air-conditioner in our body as it cools it down. It is a fully natural mechanism which controls body temperature. Interestingly, sweat is odorless while the odor that we smell is caused by the bacteria on the skin’s surface. Most bacteria accumulate in the armpit area, and that is why we reach for deodorants. Unfortunately, the blend of ingredients in such products may do a lot of harm. What substances shouldn’t be added to deodorants and antiperspirants?
3 Ingredients Which Should NOT Be Included in Deodorants
Aluminum salts are major ingredient in most deodorants! Despite harmfulness, they are used because they effectively block the proliferation of bacteria by clogging the pores. Unfortunately, they aren’t indifferent to our health. Lots of tests have shown that aluminum is linked with higher risk of breast cancer. It blocks the pores and prevents sweating.
Some alcohols aren’t harmful but others strongly dehydrate the skin, make it extremely dry, and irritate armpit skin. You probably know this feeling of burning, irritated skin after hair removal from the armpit skin and applying alcohol-based deodorant… That is why it is better to choose alcohol-free deodorants, especially in the summer because using alcohol-based products and exposing skin to the sunlight may cause hyperpigmentation.
Parabens are a group of popular and inexpensive preservatives commonly used in deodorants. They extend shelf life of deodorants keeping them fresh. It must be noted, though, that some parabens are forbidden to use in cosmetics while others are approved only in small amounts. Some countries ban parabens in kids’ products. This only proves parabens aren’t fully safe. Luckily, they aren’t essential in antiperspirants or deodorants. Many paraben-free products work well.
What are safe ingredients in deodorants?
The good news is there are plenty of them! Simple ingredients like baking soda or tapioca starch can banish excessive sweating and bacteria effectively. Lots of safe deodorants contain diatomaceous earth and coconut oil (known for antiseptic and antibacterial properties), and essential oils (eucalyptus, tea tree). Such substances make your deodorant safe, allow you to maintain hygiene, and protect against odor and bacteria.