I have tried every natural deodorant under the sun. When I say that, I am not lying. It has been drilled into my head since an early age how bad the typical, store bought deodorant is for women. My mother told me this since about, oh, I don’t know, 11 years old. I started my quest young and with the worst one, the old crystal one, that totally did not work. I bet you know what I am talking about, if you are reading this blog, I will assume you care somewhat about your health and may have even been on the same tireless journey to find the perfect deodorant that I have been on.
So why did I embark on this all natural deodorant quest? A study in the American Journal of Public Health reported that the skin’s absorption rate of the chemicals found in drinking water averaged 64% of the total contaminant dosage. Other studies reported an absorption rate of 100% for underarms. The products that we apply to our skin are absorbed into our body.
Aluminum is the active ingredient antiperspirants rely on to keep our underarms fresh. This is how it works: Aluminum salts—in the form of aluminum chloride, aluminum zirconium, aluminum chlorohydrate and aluminum hydroxybromide prevent us from sweating when aluminum ions are drawn into the cells that line the sweat ducts, causing the cells to swell and squeezing the ducts closed so sweat cannot get out. UM. THAT DOES NOT sound good for you right?!?!
Unfortunately, aluminum is also a known neurotoxin that has been linked to breast cancer and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. Let’s briefly break down these risks. Most breast cancers develop in the upper outer part of the breast (the area closest to the armpit) and some research has suggested that aluminum compounds absorbed by the skin may cause changes in the estrogen receptors of breast cells. In addition, high levels of aluminum have been found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease, and a recent study from Saint Louis University found that aluminum may cause liver toxicity, a contributing factor to degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease.
Luckily, we have come a long way since those stinky and ineffective crystal deodorants of the 90’s. I don’t want to bash them, as they were ahead of their time and on to something by promoting an all natural alternative to the norm of using Secret or Degree. I am happy to say, I have found the best of the best. It is from a brand called Agent Nateur.
After purchasing and testing nearly every available natural deodorant free of aluminum, I found that none were effective. Literally, NONE! I will admit I have wasted SO. MUCH. MONEY. trying out different brands, some have been decent, others just flat out gross (one which led me to sniffing around my apartment and husband trying to find a weird smell…guess what? It was my underarms!) and swampy arm pit inducing. I won’t get into those. Some were just a big waste, some made me smell very off, almost like a dirt and some even made my under arms dry and itchy.
However, my journey did not stop. It is a big assumption to say that aluminum based deodorant causes cancer, so I WILL NOT, however, it is said it CAN lead to cancer due to its interference with hormones. There are studies showing that aluminum is found in the majority of breast cancer tumors. For some reason the United States is very reluctant to admit this, but they were also hesitant to admit that GMO’s can lead to cancer ten years ago, and still won’t.
Although studies about such health risks are not yet definitive, it makes sense to use safe alternatives. Fortunately, as more information comes to light on these chemical ingredients, more companies are developing safer alternatives.
For me, I don’t need to wait to have the harmful effects PROVEN, I rather just avoid it and I am adamant about trying to use as many all natural products as possible.
As luck may have it, I wandered into a store on the Upper East Side and saw Agent Nateur’s packing and was immediately drawn to it. Not only is the packaging beautiful but I can’t believe I am saying this, IT WORKS. I highly recommend Agent Nateur. It not only just does the job, but it is wonderful, it keeps you smelling fresh, the packaging is luxurious and non- hippy dippy which is a major improvement in the world of green beauty.
The ingredients are all natural (and you know them all). Yay!
Organic cocos nucifera (coconut oil), cera alba (beeswax), sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), persea gratissima (avocado butter), helianthus annuus (sunflower butter), ricinus communis (castor oil), organic honey, organic lavendin, organic eucalyptus globulus and acidum citricum (citric acid)
I picked mine up at Knockout Beauty or you can order through their website at AgentNateur.com