Natural deodorants are a great solution for people who want to avoid complicated ingredients in antiperspirants as well as for those with sensitive skin. But no matter how carefully you’ve selected your natural deodorant, there’s something you should know… Any deodorant can claim to be “clean” and still contain ingredients that are not. We’ll tell you why that is, and how you can ensure you’re actually using a clean natural deodorant.
The truth about deodorant regulations
The law does not require the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to regulate ingredients in deodorants and other cosmetic products. In fact, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) reports there are more rules governing the chemicals we put on our crops today than there are on the chemicals we put on our bodies!
This is because The Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act of 1938 only gave the government the ability to regulate cosmetics considered “poisonous.” Since then, only about nine ingredients have been banned for safety reasons in the US. To give the FDA greater legal authority to regulate ingredients in deodorants and cosmetics would require Congress to change the law for the first time in 83 years.
Three years ago, an editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) called for just that. This group of medical professionals asked for greater regulation of personal care products, including deodorants, and new safety policies that would give the FDA more authority to review and recall products. Over the last 18 months, two separate personal care product safety acts have been introduced in Congress, but neither has been approved or signed into law at the time of this writing.
So, how can you be sure your natural deodorant is really clean? You’ve got to become a product sleuth, and the first clue is on the label…
1. Research your ingredients: Read product labels to ensure your natural deodorant contains no aluminum (commonly found in antiperspirant, it works to form a plug in your sweat ducts to prevent sweating), parabens, phthalates (both of which are used as artificial preservatives). You may not recognize all the ingredients on the label, and that’s okay!
The EWG Skin Deep Database is a great resource to investigate ingredients you’ve never heard of before. In the database you’ll discover where the ingredient comes from as well as its safety profile, which is based on the latest scientific research.
2. Choose ingredients that are gentle on sensitive skin: Ever tried a natural deodorant only to find you experience irritation? Underarm skin is thinner and more likely to become irritated from harsh ingredients-- even natural ones such as baking soda. Baking soda is very alkaline, and can raise the pH of the skin very quickly, causing irritation in some people. That’s why it’s important to check deodorant labels for baking soda, often labeled “sodium bicarbonate".
What’s the alternative? Look for products that rely on Dead Sea minerals and antioxidant salts that naturally control odor and reduce the bacteria that cause odor, without interrupting your body’s natural process of sweating. Another gentle, natural ingredient is tapioca starch, which helps absorb wetness on top of the skin without causing irritation. Bonus points if you find a deodorant that also contains natural skin moisturizers like coconut oils.
3. Avoid labels that say fragrance: Many natural products use synthetic fragrances that show up on deodorant labels as “parfum”, “fragrance”, or even “natural fragrances”. There are over 3,000+ ingredients that could be used to make up “fragrance”, many of which are parabens and phthalates or contain animal matter. To ensure the fragrance used in a product is transparent, look for a complete list of essential oils (rather than “parfum”, “fragrance” or “natural fragrance”) on the ingredient label. Not only will your deodorant smell better, but you’ll know what you’re putting on your body.
4. Look for brands that are cruelty-free and vegan: Even natural deodorants still use animal byproducts, such as beeswax. They also perform animal testing to ensure the safety of their products. If this is important to you, look for brands that say “cruelty-free” and “vegan” on their labels.
5. Understand the Each & Every difference: Each & Every Natural Deodorant is designed with sustainability and sensitive skin in mind. It’s made without complicated or harsh ingredients and is scented with 100% essential oils. All ingredients are sustainably sourced, including the packaging, which is made from sugar cane.
Each & Every natural deodorant meets every standard listed above, plus it’s one of a select few brands to be EWG verified. This means it’s free of the EWG’s chemicals of concern and meets their strictest standards for health from ingredient selection to manufacturing standards. Best of all, Each & Every deodorant has a smooth, creamy feel. It’s easy to apply, goes on clear and leaves no marks or stains on your clothing.
You can shop our products below. And if you give Each & Every a try for a month and it’s not what you expected, you’re covered by our money-back guarantee. Simply contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.