In response to my natural deodorant post, here’s a little info on why I avoid conventional antiperspirants. First off, sweat itself doesn’t smell, but when it combines with toxins and bacteria on your skin, you can smell the result. Antiperspirants are designed to prevent perspiration by closing your sweat ducts to close so the sweat can’t escape. Sweat is our body’s natural way of cooling itself down, and I don’t like to block that mechanism. But, I also don’t like to smell.
The active ingredient in antiperspirant is aluminum, with particles small enough to enter the bloodstream. Some studies suggest a link between these aluminum compounds and Alzheimer’s disease (which is in my family) and other neurodegenerative disorders. There is also some research that identifies some types of aluminum compounds as interfering with healthy estrogen function. Your underarms are so close to your breasts, and there are lymph nodes located there. I want to avoid exposing any parts of my body to aluminum, as much as possible. For me, that involves avoiding aluminum foil and aluminum cook/bake ware, and finding an alternative to antiperspirant.
So, my choice is to allow my body to sweat while eliminating the resulting odor. My oil/lotion + baking soda concoction works because the baking soda absorbs some sweat and controls odors. The oil/lotion helps it adhere. Some say that coconut oil has some antibacterial properties; I haven’t done enough research on that to confirm it, but I believe that it could be true.
Another natural deodorant that has received rave reviews for keeping smells away is Funk Butter, made by Oyin Handmade. If you don’t want to mix your own goop up every morning like I do, try Funk Butter instead. At $4.50 per 2 oz. tin, it’s not too pricey to give it a shot. I’d really love to try the Black Cedar Fig.