As the Victorians used to say…“Horses sweat, men perspire and women glow.” I know that not to be true because I’ve had hormonal moments when my body was reacting like a horse, albeit a very feminine one!
I didn’t realise there was a difference between anti-perspirants and deodorants but it’s obvious when I stoped to think; it’s all in the name. Antiperspirants prevent you from sweating or ‘glowing’ while deodorants do not, they simply eliminate odour. Until about ten years ago I only ever used antiperspirants then I was advised to stop (because of the ingredient aluminium which aids the prevention of sweating) and to try deodorants instead – by an Aunt who had been diagnosed with breast cancer**.
When I made the switch I was a little insecure but soon realised I had nothing to worry about. I started using a crystal stick even though I’m not keen on sticks or roll-on’s then I moved on to the Weleda Citrus Spray, (Weleda also do a loverly Sage and Wild Rose and a handy travel size) and only within the last two years have I ventured to try Neals Yard and Sukin. It’s a scary thing changing and trying new deodorants, I need not have worried though.
Sukin Natural Deodorant
Malin + Goetz Eucalyptus Deodorant
Neals Yard Lavender & Alo Vera Deodorant
Organic Pharmacy Deodorant Spray
Bull Dog Original Deodorant
Green People Scent free Deodorant
Deovert Deodorant Corporel
However, I will admit to owning an antiperspirant; just as an insurance policy for those really hot days shooting on location but I rarely use it — two years can pass before I need it again so I tend to buy a new one every time. I actually really don’t like using them because I feel a dry film on my under arm skin that I have to literally scrub off. I never noticed this film before but if I stop and think about what it’s actually doing – stopping my body from performing one of it’s natural and important functions – I question if that’s ok?
Whilst no studies have demonstrated a direct causal link between breast cancer and aluminium, recent opinion has questioned the ascribed safety of using aluminium salts in underarm cosmetics (10, 11, 12, 13). Cell culture studies have shown that human breast epithelial cells can turn into a cancerous phenotype following exposure to aluminium chloride (14), and exposure of human breast cancer cells to aluminium chloride and aluminium chlorohydrate can make cells more motile (15, 16). Mortality from breast cancer is mainly associated with tumour spread, which depends on cancer cells developing motility.
Lifetime exposure to oestrogen is an established risk factor for breast cancer and aluminium chloride and aluminium chlorohydrate have been shown to act as metalloestrogens, capable of interfering with oestrogen action and under certain conditions stimulating responses associated with natural oestrogen (17).