A couple of years ago when I was pregnant with my first daughter, I was reading a magazine article about the dangers of synthetic materials in your standard deodorant stick. I was already looking for a new brand to try, as the last four I had been using just weren't doing their job. It's almost like they made my stench worse...kind of like trying to mask the smell of stale cigarette smoke with perfume. I had tried Secret Clinical, Degree, Degree Motion Sense, Mitchum, Speed Stick and some others just to name a few, and none of them did the trick. Rewind back to the article: all of these deodorants had antiperspirants in them. I never really knew that there was a difference between "deodorant" and "antiperspirant" growing up until I began to educate myself. I only knew I was told when I was 9 or 10 by my mom "time to start wearing deodorant like a grown up, your armpits are getting stinky when you play outside". Basically antiperspirants are made to prevent your body from sweating. Yes, sweating may be gross, but your body obviously does this for a reason, just like peeing and pooping. (Hey, were all adults here, so let's get real.) The further I delved into my research, I saw that antiperspirants have been slowly researched and linked to breast cancer and Alzheimer's. I also had read about the connection with breast feeding, which I intended to do, and I did not want these neuro-toxins near my freshly baked baby. Because, yes, your boobs and armpits are close to each other.
So, in the middle of the Texas summer, I decided to quit deodorant cold turkey. I went 3 weeks with no deodorant at all in the month of August. The first week wasn't pretty, and I was stinky. But I was getting rid of all the toxins in my body and my body was getting rid of the buildup that the antiperspirant had left behind for 15+ years of using. I recently read an article on R29 about some girl that tried this and said its not worth it...I beg to differ. After getting past the fact that I smelled, which was easily combated with rubbing alcohol and a cotton ball throughout the day and showering both morning and evening, it really wasn't that bad. Matthew McConaughey doesn't wear deodorant either, for the record, and he is also from Texas. After my month long cleanse of no deodorant, I began searching for some "deodorants" that were NOT also antiperspirants. I checked our local Central Market & Whole Foods out and made sure to read the labels to ensure I wasn't putting any crap on my body. I tried a few natural brands like Toms and just felt 'bleh' they don't do anything and its a waste of money when I was doing just fine not using any. So I hopped back on the no deodorant train. And after a few months, I really didn't stink at all--as long as I was healthy. If I ate fast food, greasy stuff, etc. I had a stench; but when I ate clean I didn't stink at all. It was really a great measure and way to hold myself accountable for what I was putting into my body and also feeding my unborn baby.
Ultimately, on a family trip to Carmel, we stumbled into Lush and a lady was showing me their deodorants. I fell in love and haven't looked back since! Now, I keep all three of their types of deodorants on rotation and use for different times. I like to rotate them (in no particular pattern I might add) because it prevents my body from building up a tolerance to them. So here is my reviews of each of them & when I do or don't use them!
T'eo- it's a deodorant "bar" thats kind of dry and made of baking powder I think. It has a wax base so it doesn't crumble as you apply it. This one took me some getting used to after my first use because it had a bit of a sting to it. Granted, I used it fresh out of the shower and shaving my armpits. Now, I have learned to let my armpits breathe if I shave them and to wait to use this one on days I either don't shave my armpits or have a little bit longer to get ready (and it doesn't sting this way). It smells super fresh, too!
The GREEENCH-- my every day go-to. It's a powder; so you have to dump a smidge in your palm and kind of pat your armpits like you would with baby powder. This one is made with tea tree oil which is a natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal essential oil. It works wonders for daily activity. It smells fresh and this one is great to use if you're getting ready in a jiffy and you have just shaved your pits!
The Guv'ner--I call this one "bringing out the big guns". It's another powder in a bottle--but its made with charcoal. Charcoal is a natural moisture absorber. The tricky thing about this one is it kind of leaves a bit of a grey powder tint when its first applied. Also at the end of the day you can sort of visually see a grey residue on your armpits. So, if you're a smidge vain like me, don't wear this one with your strapless tops and tank tops. But, if you're working out, this one is the way to go. It works at wicking away the excess sweat without preventing your body from actually sweating.
So, with ALL of that being said...I try to live a healthy lifestyle and do better by my body where I can. And this is one thing I will never ever budge on or go back to using your standard run-of-the-mill grocery store deodorant ever again. I don't have any desire to prevent my body from expectorating toxins and flushing my system the way its supposed to be. The human body is a well oiled machine, why would you want to interfere with that? I advise trial and error since everyone's body is completely different and will react differently depending on things such as your personal pH. But, don't give up and find what works for you!
And if you have never stepped foot into a Lush store....just be prepared to melt.