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Natural deodorant by Oleo Bodycare
Fresh & Fruity Deodorant by Oleo Bodycare

A Fresh Look at Deodorants:

How to Avoid Harmful Chemicals and Switch to Natural Formulas

First of all, why do we typically use deodorants? Well, they make us feel safe – after all, who wants to worry about sweat stains or body odour? It’s probably an essential part of your daily routine, just like brushing your teeth or washing your face.

But have you ever thought about what’s in the deodorant you put on every morning before you head out the door?

We'll take a look at the ingredients and what they do for commercially produced antiperspirants against naturally formulated deodorants.

Why You Should Ditch Chemical-Laden Antiperspirants

Commercial antiperspirants and chemical-laden deodorants work to clog up your pores. Although sweating may sound, feel and look unpleasant, it is our bodies way of regulating temperature and releasing toxins - two very important jobs. Clogging up your pores means that sweat builds up beneath the skin, which can cause bumpy skin and painful irritation. 

The build-up of sweat beneath the skin also comes with an accumulation of the good bacteria that actually digests sweat, limiting the ability your body has to digest any bad bacteria, making your sweat smell even worse. Furthermore, the aluminium compounds can cause an acidic reaction to fabric, which is what makes those unsightly sweat stains on your white t-shirts. 

woman applying a natural deodorant

Ingredients to Avoid in Antiperspirants and Deodorants

The following is a list of ingredients to avoid when looking for a deodorant or antiperspirant.

  • Triclosan is a synthetic antibacterial and odour-killing compound. It is a pesticide and is a possible carcinogen. 
  • Triclosan disrupts thyroid function and is linked to cancer.
  • Parabens are also known to disrupt hormone function and lead to reproductive toxicity, immunotoxicity and neurotoxicity. They are also oestrogenic and can disrupt hormones in your body.
  • Propylene glycol is a petroleum-derived chemical that allows skincare products to be more easily absorbed into your skin. It creates a soft, creamier consistency in your deodorant. It is potentially toxic and linked to cancer, reproductive issues and neurotoxicity. It is also a common skin irritant and sensitizer that can cause allergic reactions.
  • Phthalates are plasticizers that are added to deodorants and other skincare products to increase flexibility, dissolve other ingredients and create a smooth consistency. They have a plethora of negative side effects, including a possible carcinogen, hormone and endocrine disruptors, and can cause asthma, and infertility.
  • Aluminium inhibits perspiration by clogging your sweat glands and potentially trapping toxins within your body. These toxins may then accumulate in your lymph nodes, which can cause cell mutation over time.

This cocktail of potentially health-harming chemicals should provide enough pitfalls (excuse the pun) to convince you to make the switch to natural deodorants.

Oleo Bodycare founder, Olivia Chapman, handmaking natural, cruelty-free skincare products

Why You Should Choose A Natural Deodorant

Natural formulas, such as natural deodorants, are becoming increasingly popular as more people become aware of the benefits of using products that are better for their health and the environment. Here are some reasons why opting for a natural deodorant can be a good choice:

They don't block pores, so allow you to sweat

Sweating is a natural bodily function that helps regulate body temperature and eliminate toxins. Antiperspirants work by blocking sweat glands, which can lead to a build-up of toxins in the body. Natural deodorants, on the other hand, allow you to sweat while still keeping odour at bay.

They stop odour naturally

Natural deodorants use ingredients such as essential oils, baking soda, and corn starch to neutralize odour-causing bacteria. These ingredients are gentle on the skin and are free from harsh chemicals that can cause irritation.

They are free from artificial fragrances and preservatives

Many conventional deodorants and antiperspirants contain artificial fragrances and preservatives that can be harmful to your health. Natural deodorants are free from these harmful chemicals, making them a safer choice for your skincare routine.

They're skin-friendly

The delicate underarm area is particularly sensitive and can be easily irritated by harsh chemicals in antiperspirants. Natural deodorants are gentle on the skin and are less likely to cause irritation.

essential oils on a shelf to be used in Oleo Bodycare natural skincare products

Friendly Ingredients in Natural Deodorants

The following is a list of (friendly) ingredients that you will find in many natural deodorants - including the award-winning Oleo Bodycare Fresh and Fruity Deodorant.

  • Aloe vera concentrate has anti-inflammatory properties to soothe delicate underarm skin.
  • Deocrystal Stone Powder (Potassium Alum) is a natural deodorant that has a molecular size that is too large to be absorbed into the skin. It stays on the surface where it inhibits bacterial growth, thus giving a deodorant effect.
  • Farnesol is an odour-free, natural raw material extracted from palmarosa and chamomile essential oils. It kills the bacteria that make our perspiration smell unpleasant. It doesn't close the pores or stop the natural process of perspiration.
  • Lemon Ester reduces the pH of the skin, making it more acidic and therefore less prone to growing bacteria. The effect of using farnesol and lemon ester lasts for 5-6 hours. The addition of deocrystal stone powder doubles the protection time.
  • Essential oils are not just added for their lovely aroma but are carefully chosen for their therapeutic properties. Oleo's Fresh and Fruity Deodorant contains the following essential oils.
  • Tea tree essential oil contains a number of compounds, including terpinen-4-ol that have been shown to kill certain bacteria which can help control underarm odour related to perspiration.
  • Lavender essential oil works to kill bacteria. At the same time, it is also very gentle and suitable for sensitive areas such as your underarm. It will keep you fresh and relieve underarm itchiness. 
  • Cypress essential oil has a lovely fresh fragrance, making it an ideal oil to use in a deodorant. Additionally, it has antibacterial properties that prevent bacterial growth and body odour.
  • May chang essential oil has an incredibly zesty citrus aroma. It has the ability to reduce excess perspiration, thus acting as a natural deodorant and is also antibacterial.
Lady applying a natural deodorant to armpit

Will You Use A Natural Deodorant?

It is essential to consider the ingredients in the deodorants and antiperspirants you use every day. As we’ve learnt, commercial antiperspirants can contain harmful chemicals that are harmful to your health, such as aluminium and parabens. 

In contrast, natural deodorants offer a safer alternative, free from harsh chemicals and artificial fragrances. They allow you to sweat naturally, neutralize odours, and are gentle on the skin. 

Making the switch to natural deodorants, such as our award-winning Oleo Bodycare Fresh and Fruity Deodorant is a positive step towards reducing your exposure to harmful chemicals and taking care of your health and the environment.

Shop the natural Fresh & Fruity Deodorant

Posted on April 3rd 2023

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