I want to express why this is so important and whether you are male or female you should be analyzing what you are putting in AND on your body : especially deodorant. I do not use antiperspirant and I haven’t for a few years. I was using TOM’S deodorant, but, I JUST LITERALLY discovered that it has a bad ingredient as well: propylene glycol – which can cause contact dermatitis (I get eczema occasionally so yes I am trashing my Tom’s deodorant and will have to search at Whole Foods for a good one OR just make my own deodorant using this recipe here – **note that 1/8 of a teaspoon is about 12.5 drops (in regards to essential oils), to be safe I will use 10-11 drops of each oil recommended in this recipe.** (SEE NOTE AT END OF BLOG REGARDING THIS)
Antiperspirant’s main ingredient is an aluminum-based compound. They block sweat glands. This is particularly worrisome because our body’s natural way of detoxifying is through sweat. The aluminum compounds may be absorbed by the skin and cause changes in estrogen receptors of breast cells (research suggests). Due to the fact estrogen can promote the growth of both cancer and non-cancer breast cells, I avoid aluminum-based deodorants (as well as birth control with estrogen). Studies have shown that using aluminum-based deodorants may be a risk factor for developing breast cancer. I definitely don’t want to fall into that category, y’all. I would rather sweat (but still smell nice). Plus, who sweats that much at work or on a daily basis anyways? Sure, I get DRENCHED in sweat at the gym but WHO CARES. You. Are. At. The. GYM! Sweat and get over it – you are supposed to be sweaty. Let your body detox how it wants – stop blocking sweat from your armpits because you think it’s gross. As long as you don’t reek (and you still might after an intense workout, but go shower, duh), who cares if you are sweaty? Most people really don’t care! Use a towel. Move on with your life.
Other scary ingredients found in conventional antiperspirants and deodorants include parabens (artificial preservatives that mimic activity of estrogen in the body – estrogen promotes breast cancer cells). As far as parabens go, although they have estrogen-like properties, the estrogens that are made in the body are apparently hundreds of times stronger. In other words, estrogen taken as hormone replacement (or birth control/aka natural estrogens) are more likely to play a role in breast cancer development, according to studies. So I would avoid estrogen in all forms at all costs!
Propylene glycol is often added to cosmetics and deodorants as well. It’s used in Tom’s deodorant too and this is why I am chunking mine. It was originally developed as an anti-freeze; it can cause contact dermatitis and skin irritation. Like I said before, I tend to have eczema-like spots on occasion as my skin is sensitive so I try to steer clear of chemicals. I will likely be making my own deodorant TONIGHT and will share how that goes! FYI: synonyms for propylene glycol = propanediol as well as steareth-21 (Propylene glycol and stearyl alcohol), and humectant.
TEA & DEA can be toxic if absorbed into the body over a long period of time; this is often used in deodorants/antiperspirants and cosmetics. It can cause allergic reactions. TEA and DEA = stand for triethanolamine and diethanolamine. Due to the fact these can be toxic if used too frequently, it’s best to avoid these as well! Especially if you are applying a deodorant every single day! You can see how over a lifetime this could become toxic.
Triclosan can cause contact dermatitis as well and is found in tons of cosmetics and deodorants, antiperspirants, etc. It is a skin irritant and may disrupt thyroid function and other hormone systems. Triclosan may also encourage bacterial resistance to antibiotics. I know we cannot be 100% perfect, so, just avoid it where you can!
FD&C COLORS: synthetic colors; can cause allergic skin reactions. Some are made from coal tar derivatives and are known to be carcinogenic. I know I personally don’t want to take any chances with putting these chemicals on my body so avoid artificial colorings in food as well as cosmetics and things of that nature.
Talc: Hydrous magnesium silicate; it is a soft mineral used as an absorbent and color additive. It is classified as carcinogen if contains asbestiform fibers. There is no way to know if the product contains asbestiform fibers or not so this is best avoided as well.
I recommend you start reading the labels of your cosmetics. And while perfumes do not have labels of ingredients, it is likely that they contain toxic chemicals too! I trashed all of my perfumes (correct, chunked them). I prefer the smell of coconuts via coconut oil anyways! I love knowing my body is free of chemicals and toxins!
Just read this article discussing what happens to the levels of chemicals in your body when you switch your cosmetic products!
**Note and update 8/2/16: I am using Tom’s deodorant again as I made my own with beeswax but it did not turn out well. The deodorant got all stuck in the container..what a bust. I think the propylene glycol found in tom’s is OK since it’s plant derived – and sometimes I will choose what is convenient rather than make my own (this does not apply to food, obviously).