Why I ditched my Antiperspirant Deodorant (it’s not what you think)

deoderantNow before you think I’ve completely lost the plot, hear me out 🙂 I ditched my antiperspirant deodorant a while ago (much to the horror of my close friends and family, more on that later) because it contained a number of chemicals I just didn’t want to put near my lymph glands or breast tissue. What are these chemicals and why did I decide against them? Read below:

  1. Aluminium
    Designed to completely stop perspiration. Aluminium has been linked to a number of health issues including that of breast cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and kidney problems.
  2. Parabens
    These guys are used as a preservative that have been confirmed to penetrate the human skin. They have been known to mimic oestrogen in the body, which can then throw our hormones off balance. They have been linked to an increased risk of hormonal cancers and possible birth defects.
  3. Propylene Glycol
    Originally designed as an anti-freeze, this product stops the deodorant from drying out. It has been linked to central nervous system disorders, heart and liver challenges.
  4. Phthalates
    Used to reach the desired consistency and assist in the fragrance sticking around. These guys have been linked to an increased likelihood of cell mutation and birth defects. 
  5. Triclosan – Used as an antibacterial. The problem? It’s been classified as a pesticide by the FDA, and a probable carcinogen by the EPA. It’s been linked to a number of different problems including yet again, cancer, the disruption of the endocrine system, skin irritation, organ system toxicity and the ability to bio accumulate.
  6. Fragrance
    Can be made up of hundreds or even thousands of synthetic chemicals potentially capable of a number of health problems.

But can deodorant cause health problems?

The jury is out, but given that everything we place on our skin is absorbed into our bloodstream (don’t believe me, let’s talk about the nicotine patch or hormone therapy patches… hrrmmm?) and that the EWG found 287 toxic chemicals in the umbilical cord blood of newborn babies born in the U.S. during 2004, I’m not taking any chances.

What are the alternatives? 

Natural Deodorant! Woop! Well, not so much. For those of you who have tried to use a natural deodorant, you will be aware that a whole lot of them don’t actually do much in the name of “protection”. So, in a bid to preserve the wellbeing of our friends and family who are not quite on the same “chemical free” bandwagon, and well, to help us keep our friends; I to set out and find the best of the best. I won’t lie, this challenge was a challenge and a half. I tested 11 deodorants in total, some failed miserably (shout out to my friends for sticking with me), and some passed with flying colours however, to preserve the length of this blog post, my top 5 can be viewed here.

Have you made the switch? 



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Meet Alyse

I’m a qualified Nutritionist who believes an evidence-based approach to modern nutrition is severely under-rated. Patients are so often left in the dark when it comes to health-care and as a firm believer in the old saying “knowledge is power”, my ultimate goal is to provide my readers, students and patients with clear and actionable advice that ultimately helps you reach your full potential.