The Green Mama

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Safe or Sketchy? What's in Your Deodorant?

Cecelia Ungari

Find me at in the middle of some project or experiment, or asleep.

It seems that there are so many options for consumers on the shelf today. The average woman in the U.S. uses over a dozen body care products each day (hair, skin, deodorant, etc.). While men use less, they are still at risk because of the ingredients found within.

Maybe you picked out a 'natural' or 'green' deodorant and think your work is done. But have you looked at the ingredients list? Have you checked your product's rating on the Cosmetics Database?  

Aisle - Shutterstock.jpg
When it comes to deodorant, smelling fresh all day long is a top priority for most of us. Most antiperspirants use a combination of chemicals to prevent our armpits from sweating. Sweating is one of the body's ways to eliminate toxins from our systems - trying to stop this process has never made much sense to me. Plus I could never find one that really worked, I was just perspiring through clogged pores.

Our sweat doesn't smell, but the bacteria that hang out in our armpits do. We can wash away the bacteria or put something on to limit its growth (like a deodorant).

Some of the very questionable ingredients in antiperspirants include aluminum salts (associated with Alzheimer's disease), parabens (methyl-, ethyl-, or butyl- endocrine disruptors), propolyene glycol (also found in anti-freeze), synthetic fragrances (contain phthalates, neurotoxins and are just yucky), dyes, and a whole bunch of other unnecessary and potentially harmful ingredients.

So deodorants are better right? They won't have the aluminum salts, but I've found deodorants with ingredients lists that make me shudder. Some of these have even marketed themselves as "natural"!! I am shocked, and I'm encouraging everyone to look at your ingredients list tomorrow morning (its always best to view scary sights in the light of day).

Check out the Organic Consumers Association's list of brands that consistently offer safe and real organic products, and find out who's on the list of cheaters. We were surprised!!

Wanna save money, your health and the planet?
Some great alternatives to OTC (over-the-counter) deodorants are:
  • Don't use any! You could be one of the many people who don't smell much at all, and use deodorants/antiperspirants out of habit. Find out, why use it if you don't need it
  • Make your own. There are some easy recipes out there, try one or two and see what works. A friend (who always smells delightful to me) swears by baking soda. Apply as a powder or mix with water and spray on. 
  • I make a quick mix of half water and half white vinegar, add a few drops of tea tree oil and spray it on. 
Photo source - Shutterstock 
Deodorant - Shutterstock.jpg



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JorgeLobo said:

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Amazing. Ms. Ungari disingenuously asks that folks read labels - she clearly does not do it herself. Deodorants and antiperspirants do NOT included parabens of any type!!! And she misspells those ingredients that are used - ingredients whose safety the FDA and the American Cancer Soc have reviewed and for which they've found no issue.

Don't bother an ignorant biased person (Ms Ungari) with facts.

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