Body odor happens when our bodies eliminate toxins in the form of sweat which can sometimes have a smell that claims “squater’s rights” in the depth of our armpits. Sweat is a natural way body detoxifies and self cleans. We want want sweat but we don’t want the body odor or the wet underarm patches! Unfortunately, that combination at can be unpleasant and inconvenient and usually occurs under stress and into the fabric of our best clothes. Modern civilization has certain standards and expectations of hygiene that are reasonable enough in that no one wants to stink up the room or sweat through their shirt during a presentation. However, many deodorants on the market are full of toxic chemicals. So what does a holistic minded mama do to keep herself smelling fresh without applying toxic chemicals to the sensitive skin under our armpits?
The Hows: Most deodorants on the market contain a combination of unhealthy chemicals. The most toxic have the inclusion of aluminum which acts as a pore clogging agent that doesn’t let sweat and body odor out. Unfortunately, exposure to aluminum is linked to the development of Alzheimer’s and other diseases and interferes with estrogen levels. Another commonly used dangerous ingredient are parabens (methyl, ethyl, propyl, benzyl and butyl). Parabens are believed to disturb the body’s hormonal balance and have been linked in studies to play a part in breast cancer, infertility and even birth defects. Many also have silica is a known skin irritant that can be contaminated with crystalline quartz which is a known carcinogen.
The Whys: Because of the health risks, going all natural in what we apply to the area closest to our glands, lymph nodes and breast tissue can’t be a bad idea. According to breastcancer.org, about 1 in 8 women will develop cancer over the course of her lifetime. Given that about 12% of the US population will have to face this harsh reality, it is always wise to lean toward caution when it comes to our overall health. As informed consumers, we can make a choice by opting for safer, cleaner and all natural products.
The Whats: We all want the best deodorants for our money. Ones that do the job without the harmful chemicals. Check out brands like Tom’s of Maine and Schmidt’s that have paved a path in this industry. More and more we are finding natural brands that are widely available. As these brands become leaders we’ll find the industry will start to make changes. Remember, natural deodorant made of plants and minerals and are especially good for sensitive skin and these days there area offerings numerous fragrances as well as fragrance free with stick and jar applications! My mama don’t stink!