Tip Tuesday: Do you know what's in your deordorant?

Since it's been blazing hot around here I thought it would be a great segue into talking about sweat and deodorant.  Why, you ask?  Well, you may just see that fragrant roll-up stick of gunk as a way to avoid a little embarrassing odour, but did you know that even though they smell quite lovely, deodorant & antiperspirant are full of gross chemicals.

One of the active ingredients in antiperspirant is Aluminium.  Aluminium blocks the sweat glands preventing the moisture from getting to your clothes.  And ladies, this is a big deal as there aren't really any deodorants for us, so you really have no choice.  There is some research suggesting that the aluminium absorbed through the skin can disrupt the estrogen receptors in the breast tissue.  Estrogen can promote the growth of both non-cancer and cancerous cells so it's been suggested that using these products can be a risk factor for cancer.  Although it hasn't been conclusively linked yet, definitely a good reason to stay away from aluminium based deodorants/antiperspirants.  To learn more visit the National Cancer Institute.

Next up you have Parabens.  These are a class of artificial preservatives widely used in personal care products and cosmetics.  These guys mimic estrogen in the body and are also being investigated for their possible role in breast cancer.

Or how about a little Propylene Glycol?  This bad-boy is a humectant - it keeps things from drying out.  It also has it's own MSDS.  The Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) cites skin, liver and kidney damage that can result from contact with Propylene Glycol, and it gives safe handling instructions, calling it a hazardous substance. Though not specified, this is for the more concentrated industrial grade.  But really...do you want to rub this under your arms every morning?

And then there's Triclosan.  This guy is found the artificial antibacterial chemical found in just about anything labelled 'Antibacterial'.  Some studies show that it can disrupt thyroid function and other hormone systems.  In August 2009, the Canadian Medical Association asked the Canadian government to ban triclosan use in household products under concerns of creating bacterial resistance and producing dangerous side products

Throw in a little Talc, FD & C colours, TEA & DEA and then you've got a typical stick of deodorant. Sounds delicious!

But what I'm really trying to get at is look at what you are putting on your body.  You don't have to eat it to get the toxic effects.  Start reading labels, check out green alternatives or better yet....make your own!  Stay tuned next week and I'll show you how!

Smelling lovely,

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