Do you want to switch to a natural deodorant, but don’t know where to start?
I have been there, and I have learnt alot (there’s still so much more to learn)
so I thought it would be a great idea to share what I’ve learnt
and the deodorants I’ve tried!
Deodorant, a brief history
Whilst it’s believed that our natural body odour kept predators at bay during caveman times, the Ancient Egyptians made the first attempt at concealing it. Through perfumed baths and scented wax, the Ancient Greeks and Romans also hid their natural scent. The middle ages took a step back when the church decided being naked was inappropriate, even in the bath. Therefore baths were all but abandoned, although the wealthy would use perfume to hide the stench.
The first instance of a trademarked deodorant was in 1888 called ‘mum’ which was a paste that was applied to your underarm. This was quickly followed by ‘Everdry’ which was a aluminium chloride solution that was applied with a cotton swab. During the 1950’s the first roll on was created, inspired by the ballpoint pen, with the first aerosol being released in the 1960’s.
Deodorant or Antiperspirant
Whats the difference? Deodorant protects against odour, whilst antiperspirant protects against sweat too. To stop sweat antiperspirants use aluminium salts, this effectively creates a gel which blocks the pores. However, sweating isn’t all bad! We need to sweat! By sweating our body tries to cool down our temperature, the glands are also activated by exercise, emotions and nerves.
The sweat itself isn’t what causes an odour, but the bacteria which makes it’s home in our armpits. This bacteria can react with the chemicals in some antiperspirants which causes yellowing of your clothes! Further to this, odour can be made worse by what we eat. Foods such as meat and asparagus all add to our odour due to their chemical makeup.
Basically, what I’m trying to say is, sweat isn’t bad! Let your body do what it needs to do to work properly. Put down the antiperspirant and pick up a deodorant instead!
However, sweating isn’t all bad! We need to sweat!
Switching to a natural deodorant
There are so many natural deodorant options out there, it is hard to know where to start! You will likely need to try a few to find one that works for you, your bacteria and your lifestyle. It is a great way to cut back on single use plastic, and to take control of what you are putting on your body.
First thing’s first, You will have a detox period when you make the switch. It will be slightly uncomfortable as it is not something you will be used to. I advise making the switch in the cooler months, and perhaps on a Friday, so the worst of your detoxing will take place over the weekend. This is perfectly natural for your body to take time to get used to the new ingredients. If you find you are still smelling a few weeks in though, it is likely that the particular ingredients just do not combine well with your bodies bacteria, so try a different option.
What I’ve tried
Nuud is an all natural deodorant in a bio plastic sugarcane tub. Made from only 10 ingredients Nuud is an unscented clay which is vegan and completely cruelty free. It comes in tube made from sugar cane which is compostable, plant-based and doesn’t use fossil fuel. Bioplastic still puts a strain on the environment, but it is a step in the right direction in cutting out single use plastic.
A Nuud tube will last you approx. 10 weeks and will only require application every 3 -7 days. I used Nuud for around 4 months and this was my first natural deodorant I tried. As such the detox period was quite smelly, but it worked brilliantly after. However, I found that it struggled to fight my armpit odour once we hit the hit of summer. I will defiantly use this again the cooler months!
My next foray into the natural deodorant world was a bar from The Good Soap. Deodorant bars are a fantastic option as they require no packaging, are vegan and cruelty free, and you have a pick of different scents and oils meaning you can find the perfect one for your body, with or without bicarb. They are very simple to use, you just rub them under your armpit like a roll on!
I chose a spearmint and lemongrass bar, which I was very happy with, and it smelt gorgeous! As I kept it on a plate on my bedside table, I picked up little whiffs of it around my bedroom. Unfortunately, when the weather got extremely warm, the smell of the spearmint didn’t work. I will try a bar again, but in a different scent, perhaps the plain lemongrass one!
My current deodorant choice are some balms from Portside Soap Company, which if you follow me on Instagram you will know are my favourite place to venture for my bathroom needs (review on their products here). These solid balms are so easy to use, simple warm them up a little with a wooden spatula and rub a pea size amount into each armpit.
I have two scents, Tea Tree and Lime, and Grapefruit and Peppermint. I have only been using them for a month but am quite happy with the Tea Tree and Lime balm. Tea Tree has antibacterial products, which works well with combating armpit bacteria. I have only used the Grapefruit and Peppermint a few times, but find that Peppermint is the same as Spearmint when is comes to smelling awful on my body when warm.
So there we have it, the three different type of natural deodorants I have tried. Each has its own pros and cons, and it really is a case of trial and error in finding one that works for you! Have you made the switch? Or do you plan on switching? Let me know in the comments, and be sure to follow me on Instagram – Let’s be social 😉
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