What is a gal gotta do to find an all-natural, healthy, effective deodorant? Seven years I have been experimenting and still no luck. (Isn’t that ridiculous?) Friends and family have suggested brands that they like but I have not had the same results. I think it is a body chemistry thing, what works for one person does not mean it will work for another. Either that or I am a freakish sweaty mess.
Yes, I have reframed my expectations. I expect using natural deodorant means I will continue to sweat (and that is healthy) but it should keep me adequately fresh throughout the day. I do not expect it to work after a long hike or a game of hockey. Am I asking too much?
My husband isn’t happy with the experiment because (a) I complain a lot (b) I try to pawn the rejects off on him and (c) he does not say it…but sometimes I stink with the “pits”. The more I research the product the crustier I become. It is more than just the expense involved. I naively thought companies that market as organic, environmentally friendly and natural would make products that are low hazards for our health. This is where I first learned about greenwashing.
According to the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database reports, two of the deodorants I used (one during pregnancy with my daughter) and the other for the last year both received higher health hazard scores (6/10) and (4/10) than the popular generic brand (3/10) I was eager to replace. What’s up with that?!
I wrote both companies to inquire about their troubling hazard scores. Both responded and both questioned techniques the Environmental Working Group used to analyze fragrance in products. One company said that if the EWG really investigated, they would likely change the hazardous rating to a lower score. (?) I was pleased they took the time to write me but their answers did not satisfy.
This forced a closer look at the ingredients. When shopping for deodorants, here are the deal breakers for me. I want to avoid products with formaldehyde a volatile organic compound (VOC). According to The Green Guide, it might pose the greatest health risk in roll on deodorants. Health Canada is not concerned about aluminum (and/or zirconian) but I am. The jury is out on studies that suggest this mineral contributes to Alzheimer’s. I figure, if we coat our cooking pans to protect our food from coming in contact with aluminum, I am not going to slap it under my armpits. I also want to avoid any ingredients ending in paraben (possible hormone disrupters) and fragrances other than essential oils.
So…the experiment continues. In the meantime, I alternate a few natural deodorants switching and combining trying to outwit bacteria. I realize now I have to do some homework before I shop for any green, organic or environmentally friendly products.
My next step is to try making my own deodorant from a recipe I recently found during my “investigation”. That takes cooking in my kitchen to a completely new level. Wish me luck.
Have you had success with natural deodorants? Do tell…