DEO DETOX (a guide to natural deodorant)

Updated: Oct 17, 2018

Okay, we all know this is the talk of the town right now. Let me tell you, this is the easiest switch you can make in your personal care routine. And the smelliest. But hear me out, it's worth it. PS - I'm talking only 100% natural deodorants. Don't be fooled by "clean", "plant infused" and so forth. Sure, they're a great alternative, but if you're gonna make the switch, try going the whole mile. Look for that one hunna percentage.

You will (very likely) stink in this detoxification period. This is *insert amount of years you've been using conventional deodorant* worth of chemicals seeping out your pores. Kinda nasty, kinda awesome. Synthetic ingredients like aluminum that are found in conventional deodorants enter your body and have a real hard time getting back out (while we're on this subject: petroleum jelly - Vaseline - is a one way street. Do yourself a favour and avoid at all costs). When you start exposing your armpits to natural ingredients, such as essential oils/liquified salts/shea butters etc., they begin to sweat out the crap and absorb the new substances you're offering. It can take up to 21 days for your armpits to adjust to this change. If you're lucky, you'll adjust so well that you won't even need to apply deodorant every day anymore. I don't!

So, three days in, you convince yourself your colleagues are disgusted and your friends are talking about you behind your back. This is the part where most people give up. I was working at Saje Natural Wellness earlier this year and the amount of people that were keen on switching to natural - then returned 3 days later complaining of inefficacy - was astonishing. Ok, I've got to admit, that exact case landed me a job there. I had switched to their deo last year, and was really grossed out by my own body odours (uh, why does society make us feel ashamed about our natural bodily functions? sigh, more on that later). I went in and spoke to the wonderful team member (much love for you, Kristina!) who gave me the 411 on this detox period, then long story short, offered me a job.

My recommendation for this sweaty period is to own it. Acknowledge that it is embarrassing, but that it is OK. Embrace the fact that you're making the switch to take care of your body. Educate others and share your experience. During my smelly phase, I would straight up let people know that I stunk. I found it made me more confident and it became less of an elephant in the room. "Just want to warn you, I'm switching to natural deodorant and I might stink during this workout". Some people thought it was rad. Others moved away from me. You can't always win.

Next, you'll notice that you're sweatier than usual. NEWSFLASH, that's what we do as humans. We are designed to perspire to maintain a healthy body temperature. The big guys make major bucks off brainwashing you into believing that sweat is gross. Anti-perspirant blocks your pores so much that you literally won't sweat... What I want to know is where that sweat and chemical buildup goes (hmm, about that correlation between deodorant and breast cancer). You'll need to embrace the sweat. Your body will adjust to this as well, and you'll likely begin to sweat a little less, as it wont constantly be trying to rid itself of the Old Spice you've layered on for the past ten years.

Everybody is different, and how you'll respond to each natural deodorant may vary. Try a few for yourself. Here are a few of my faves, in order of preference:

1) Saje Natural Wellness Exotic Deodorant I promise this isn't bias, this is the one I almost gave up on prior to my job there. It's a spray deodorant made with EO's and liquified minerals salts. You can spray this sh*t on anything, no white marks, nothin'. It's handy to keep in your bag or in the car for that on-the-go re-application. Pair it with their crystal deodorant for double the protection.

2) At a market recently, I decided to give Pinch Natural Skincare's lavender & bergamot deo a go. LOVE! This is in balm form, with a shea butter and coconut oil base. Best part? Their containers are 100% biodegradable, and can go straight in the green bin after use. So much yes. I have found this packaging a bit finicky, but anything for mama earth.

3) My (stubborn) man loves Element Botanicals, specifically in their "amazing" scent. Quote, "I'm not using that, I sweat too much in my job and flowers aren't going to fix me". Three weeks later, quote, "So, I'm almost out of that deodorant. It actually works?! Where do I get more?"

4) K'pure's get closer. This is in paste form, applied with your finger. It's great daily, but I wouldn't say this is my favourite deodorant for fitness. I love the smell, however, mixed with a vigorous workout sweat, I found I had some pretty gnarly B.O. coming from my pits.

These are all around $10.

So, are you willing to smell like a caveman for the sake of your health? Would love to hear your feedback and/or your stories!