Monday, May 9, 2016


Warm weather is coming, and, we all want to smell nice. (Don't we?) Conventional deodorants may be effective, but there are plenty of questions regarding their safety. As usual, there are few answers, but, plenty of questions about ingredients.

First up is that darn aluminum. Unfortunately, labels don't always tell the whole story. There are so many aluminum derivatives. Labels may try to "fool" you by listing the ingredients as, say, "bauxite," which is aluminum. Or "alum salts" which is -  you guessed it - a form of aluminum. Aluminum is used to block perspiration. And it works. It is not usually found in deodorants, but, rather, antiperspirants which are designed to stop sweating. Maybe not a good idea.  Toxicology results show high levels of aluminum in the brains of patients who died from Alzheimer's. No conclusive evidence can link these higher aluminum levels to deodorant use.

According to OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration in the States,  exposure to high levels of aluminum can cause speech disorders, dementia, and other neurological disorders. Again, there is no conclusive evidence showing aluminum salts are absorbed in large enough amounts to cause these neurological problems. Personally, I will avoid aluminum until they can prove to me that it is safe, however. I like to err on the side of caution.

Aluminum salts are, however, definitely linked to contact dermatitis - redness and irritation of the skin, in some people.

Breast cancer is another disorder that is thought to be possibly connected to the use of parabens in deodorant. Parabens are preservatives commonly used in deodorants and antiperspirants. Studies are again not definitive. Parabens mimic hormones, which may increase breast cancer risk. Six different parabens were measured in the biopsy samples taken from women with breast cancer. High levels of parabens were found in the area near the armpit, which is where most breast cancers are found.  But - no conclusions could be reached. 

The National Cancer Institute did find a link between women who started shaving and using deodorant before age 16, however.  This group developed breast cancer at a younger age than women who started shaving and using deodorant at a later age.

What to do? can discontinue using deodorant all together. Or, try a toxin free deodorant like the one eScential Wellness offers. No aluminum. No parabens, or synthetic fragrance. Free from The Toxic Ten!