There are studies and articles claiming that aluminum and parabens are linked to certain diseases, primarily breast cancer. The claims are that the clogging of the pores to eliminate sweating causes toxins to build up and travel back to the lymph nodes near the armpits/top of the breast. Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen warn in their book You: Staying Young: The Owner's Manual for Extending Your Warranty, "Use deodorant instead of antiperspirant, since sweat is normal and blocking the pores is not. Especially avoid aluminum, which is found in high levels in the brain plaques linked to Alzheimer's disease. And with deodorants, avoid phthalates, which are plastics used to help the fragrance stay on our skin and block endocrine function, especially in the male fetus. Parabens, which are used as preservatives in these products, should also be avoided since they could be linked to breast cancer."
Then there are articles and studies that claim the exact opposite, and state that the above studies don't have enough evidence to actually prove that the aluminum and parabens are the actual cause for the cancer.
I don't know if alumninum and parabens cause cancer, but I'm not willing to find out the hard way.
I started researching different deodorants to see if I could actually find one that I liked. Understand that I'm not talking about antiperspirants, so I'm still sweating - but I am one of those that believes that our bodies were meant to sweat, and as someone who holds a lot of heat, I feel it's healthiest for me. I'm also someone who works out regularly, and because I sweat I need a strong deodorant.
After browsing my local natural food store I found that there are quite a few brands to choose from. After having unsuccessful trials with a couple different brands (i.e.: I became the person that you do not want to workout next to at the gym), I found Primal Pit Paste. I had read a few reviews, and the only thing that seemed to be against it was that I couldn't purchase it in my local stores. I had to order online - which turned out to be a really easy process.
I placed my order for two jars, the lavendar and the lemongrass thyme. I wanted to order the stick version, but they were sold out - go figure, slathering on deodorant with my hands wasn't my top pick either. Either way, I sucked it up and purchased my products. To my surprise, they were relatively cheap. A normal storebought brand of Suave or Secret was costing me around $3 or $4 each, and lasting a month or two. These jars were around $9 each, but you use such a little amount that it seems as though it will last at least a few months! I've been using it for about a month now, and have barely put a dent in my jar.
My order came in less than a week and I began using the product. Even though it's not an antiperspirant, I am actually not sweating 'as much' as normally do. I still sweat, but it's not like I'm leaving marks on my clothes or anything. The scents of the product are amazing, and as someone who stinks when I sweat, this is huge for me. The lemongrass thyme is my favorite. It's so fresh and light - but I find myself catching whifs of it throughout the day. If lemongrass thyme is all I smell, I'd say that's a good thing! Primal Pit Paste is, by far, the best brand of natural deodorant I've used.
And I actually don't mind using my hands in the morning. Unlike storebought deodorant with addititives, this product doesn't leave a gross film on your skin. It easily washes off with a little soap and water, and (*bonus*) shaving my underarms is so much more smooth and easy. This product is nourishing my skin, and I find that I have less razor bumps and knicks.
Regardless of the studies out there, I'm a huge advocate of using products that have ingredients you can recognize and pronounce. Anytime I can replace an old, toxic product with a new, natural one - I'm in! I'll let you decide if toxic free deodorant is a better choice for you. They have a product for every member of the family: kids, women, men and really active folks ("strong" version of the same products) - so you can get all of your shopping done in one trip.
If you're curious, I'd encourage you to check it out for yourself. If you do, let me know what you think!
Have a healthy day!