There’s a lot of information swirling around about the ingredients in conventional deodorant and how they can negatively affect your health. Maybe after a little research of your own, you decide to ditch the stuff for something natural (good on you!) With enthusiasm, you apply your new natural deodorant and go about your day, only to discover it’s not exactly what you were expecting—as in your getting hit mid-day with sticky pits…what gives?
If you can relate to that experience, you are not alone! I found myself in that exact situation when I first made the switch and almost reached the point of giving up. I tried several products before I finally found what worked, but once I did I never looked back! Natural deodorant works wonders when your body adjusts to it—I’ve found I’m even sweating less than I used to. It’s a very different product than conventional deodorant and antiperspirant that requires a little bit of knowledge to get it to work properly.
Don’t be like me, blindly trying product after product, here are tips for choosing a natural deodorant that works for you!
1. Understand the difference between antiperspirant and deodorant
Unlike deodorant, antiperspirant physically plugs up your pores to prevent sweat from escaping and keeping you dry and fresh using aluminum particles. Having bone-dry pits all day is super convenient, but our bodies were meant to sweat and clogging up your pores with chemicals only band-aids the actual problem: bacteria growth. Natural deodorants won’t physically stop sweat from happening, but they will reduce the amount of sweat and help tame odor. Eventually, your body will get used to it and balance out naturally.
2. Know the types of natural deodorants out there
When it comes to natural deodorant, the good news is, you have options! There are a lot of great products to choose from so you’re bound to find the one that works for you.
Sticks – the most recognizable form of deodorant, these make for great on-the-go application since they are easily thrown in a bag and can be stealthily applied at work if necessary (come on, we’ve all been there, stress happens).
Sprays – these tend to be a crowd favorite as there’s usually no risk of any residue getting on your clothes. The downside is having to hold your arms up for several seconds until it dries, and you may need to reapply frequently.
Cremes/pastes – if taking a literal “hands-on” approach to applying your deodorant doesn’t bother you, then you might want to try a paste. Although they’re applied with your fingers and sometimes messy, these tend to have the best results. I use this one and never have to reapply at work and it even passed the sweaty, hot yoga test!
3. Embrace your sweaty self
Like I mentioned earlier, deodorant is not going to plug up your pores and stop sweating the way antiperspirant does. A common misconception that sweat is the odor offender, but in actuality, the smell comes from bacteria that builds up in our armpits. If you have an event where you need to be certain sweat is kept at bay, consider using an antiperspirant sparingly for those critical moments (there are natural options for those too!)
4. Be patient!
Like many natural solutions, this takes a little time to work! Your body will need to adjust to not being blocked up with aluminum from conventional products, and it might take some trial and error with different brands and formulas. For me, I learned baking soda was way to harsh of an ingredient for my sensitive skin, so I opted for formulas that weren’t as baking soda heavy. Other people swear by baking soda formulas! You’ll have to find what works best for you. Just be patient and have fun with it!
Have you ever given natural deodorant a try? What are some of your tricks and tips for staying odor-free?