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For as long as I’d been using deodorant (AKA most of my life), I’d been using random deodorants from the drugstore. Well, until I made a major discovery: while deodorant may not seem like a huge deal, it is actually one of the biggest ways you can contribute to your toxic buildup. I have now talked about safer home swaps I’ve made, why I switched my cleaning products, and why I ditched dryer sheets, but today, let’s talk about why I stopped using drugstore deodorant and about alternatives that actually work.
As someone with a specific set of detox issues (hello, MTHFR gene mutation!), it’s especially important for me to consider the toxic load in my environment. And this is a bigger issue now than ever, thanks to pollution, processed food, drinking water, personal products, and more. It’s really important for all of us — even if you don’t share my detox issues— to take control of the things we can in our bodies and homes to minimize toxic load.
Best Natural Deodorants
It’s no secret that I really care about what we put in and on our bodies, which are designed to absorb the products we apply to them. I choose to be a voice for all of this because it’s been way too long since a necessary law has been passed to police all of this, and ingredients banned elsewhere are still in our products here in the U.S. The worst part? It’s well-known and well-documented that many of the ingredients in our products are linked to cancer, endocrine disrupters, and more. I’m not trying to scare you — just to educate you so we can all do better for ourselves and our families!
I have used natural deodorant for years, and I’ve tried so many…
Basically, if it’s been on the market, I’ve given it a shot, and more often than not, I haven’t been impressed. I didn’t personally have much luck with Tom’s, Crystal Stone, or Schmitt’s. Even my husband — who was on the search for a natural alternative, too — gave up for a while. It’s been years of experiments over here! (For what it’s worth, I’ve heard good things about Native Deodorant recently. I haven’t tried it myself and it seems a little pricey, but you deserve to hear all the options!)
Fast forward through all of those experiments and letdowns, and — good news! — we’ve both found a natural, safer deodorant that actually works. It has ingredients we can feel good about putting on our pits! We now use Primally Pure deodorant, which is filled with good-for-you ingredients like tallow from grass-fed cows and organic and fair trade coconut oil. It’s all pure and natural enough to eat…. though I probably wouldn’t recommend that!
- I use the Blue Tansy or Lemongrass varieties
- My hubby Mike uses Charcoal
- My mom uses Lavender
- Kelli likes Blue Tansy, and she’s gotten her hubby John hooked on Charcoal!
Adjusting to Natural Deodorant
Primally Pure deodorant, and other natural deodorants, are not antiperspirants. What does that mean? It means it’s going to take some time for you to adjust! When you have used chemicals to block your sweat glands for so many years, transitioning to all natural is going to require some patience. Primally Pure deodorant, specifically, has a cumulative effect, so the longer you use it, the better it works!
Sweat is a HEALTHY and NORMAL part of being human. I know, I know — you don’t want to have sweaty pits all day, but here’s the deal: since this product doesn’t contain any of the toxic chemicals found in conventional deodorants, it won’t interfere with your body’s natural and necessary detoxification process. Things are going to be sweaty at first! Your body will balance out though, and then you’ll be good to go. Based on my experience, I’d give your body thirty days to get used to natural deodorant. For some people the detox stage is shorter!
Red Flags to Look for in Your Deodorant
Here are a few of the icky chemicals you can find in your go-to drugstore deodorant…
- Aluminum blocks your pores to prevent sweat and keep you dry all day long. It’s also linked to Alzheimer’s disease and heavy metal toxicity.
- Paragons are endocrine/hormone disruptors, found in 99% of breast cancer tissue sampled in this study.
- Propylene glycol is a fragrance, skin conditioner, and absorption enhancer that’s linked to organ toxicity and skin irritations. And because it improves product penetration, it helps to carry other harmful ingredients in the product through the skin. Oh, it’s also found in anti-freeze and is classified as skin irritant by the EWG. Yikes.
- Phthalates are endocrine disruptors linked to permanent birth defects.
- Triclosa is an antibacterial agent and preservative that is linked to liver toxicity, skin allergies, and thyroid dysfunction.
- Fragrances, which are cocktails of chemicals that create skin sensitivities and irritations. They are among the most toxic ingredients you’ll find, even on “natural deodorant” labels.
Do your own research!
Here’s the thing: there’s so much we cannot control in the world, but for the things we can – and use daily — why wouldn’t we do a little research and make safer swaps for ourselves and our families? At the very least, we should be aware of what is in them!
I use two main resources in our home to identify how toxic our products are. One is EWG.ORG/SKINDEEP and the other is the Think Dirty APP. With each, you can scan barcodes or search ingredients in your home and see how toxic or non-toxic your current products are. Pretty cool, right?
Spoiler alert: it can be slightly terrifying when you start scanning your products, because everything may suddenly seem dangerous! Don’t forget that you can make small changes, and that doing your best is what matters. I’m not advocating you throw out every product in your home right now. Instead, get informed. Once you are, you can make better choices! Ingredients DO matter, and with a product you apply every single day (sometimes even multiple times a day!) these toxic ingredients can build up in your body. The best thing you can do is read, research, and learn your product labels.
FAQ’s from my friends at Primally Pure:
Q: Will the deodorant stain my clothes?
A: Typically, if our customers are noticing residue left on their clothing, the product is being applied too liberally. Our products are super concentrated and made with the purest of ingredients, so two light swipes is plenty for maximum odor protection!
Q: I’ve tried natural deodorant before and it gave me a rash. Will that happen with Primally Pure deodorant?
A: Irritation is most likely caused by the baking soda in natural deodorants, as some people are more sensitive to it. Our deodorant contains only a small percentage of this super odor eliminator, along with other pit pampering, odor-fighting ingredients. Although there is a small percentage of people who will react to any amount of baking soda, we’ve found that most people who have experienced irritation from other brands can handle our formula just fine. We also have our amazing Everything Spray, that can be used as a pit refresher + so much more (take a peek at 5 Effective Ways To Use Our Everything Spray).
Q: I tried a different natural deodorant brand once and felt like it didn’t work. How is this one different?
A: We believe the education behind WHY nontoxic is important outweighs certain detox results such as sweat + smell, which typically always subside. Our deodorant formula protects against odor pretty darn well. With smell, this WILL get better. Much better. And if it doesn’t, it may be time to consider making some dietary changes and eliminate processed food. Regular exercise can also help the body to detox and minimize BO! Here are two helpful blog posts of ours for you to check out on the transition from switching from conventional to natural in more detail.
Discount for YOU:
You can use code LEXI for 10% off your Primally Pure order!
Other favorites (aside from the deodorant of course) include:
- Fancy Face Serum
- Body Butter
- Dry Shampoo
- Everything Spray
- Bath Sea Soak
- Lip Balms
- Nature Spray (safer bug spray)
Made the jump to PP a few years ago and never looking back! Hubby and I both have the deodorant- love!
My hubby too!
Also check out Lone Deodorant. I have been using it for 2 years and I love it along with their other body products.
What does Blue Tansy smell like? I took the plunge and got the charcoal one; it smells a bit manly maybe. I’m excited because regular anti-perspirants are so bad for us so I hope for good things!
Florally! I bet they have a better description on the website of what it smells like — I love it! I also love Lemongrass.
I’d love to switch me and my whole family to natural deodorant. My biggest issue is my 17 year old son. He has hyperhidrosis…..excessive sweating. It started last summer and got progressively worse. I feel so bad for him because he has to change shirts throughout the day. To switch him would be a struggle. I’ve been trying to find natural remedies but no luck. I’m hoping he grows out of it. Have you heard of any natural options that work for this condition?