Aluminum in Deodorants | Nairian
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Aluminum in Deodorants
20 February, 2019 / by Maya Adivi, cosmetologist

 

With the release of the new, all-natural, and aluminum-free deodorants from Nairian, we thought it was important to talk about exactly why we’re staying away from aluminum, one of the most common deodorant ingredients around.

Aluminum usually shows up in antiperspirant deodorants, which are much more intense than simple deodorants. The form of aluminum normally used is aluminium chlorohydrate, which works as an antiperspirant by blocking the sweat glands and preventing our skin from sweating altogether.

Sweating is one of the ways in which our bodies self-clean, so this is what Anahit Markosian, Nairian’s co-founder and head of R&D, had to say: “We will not produce antiperspirants because we do not believe that it is wise or healthy to interfere with the body's natural cleansing mechanism.” Aluminum-free deodorants, on the other hand, don’t prevent any of our natural bodily functions. Their purpose is simply to neutralize the odor that is often caused by sweating. Read on to learn what the main issues with aluminum are, and why to avoid aluminum-based deodorants in your personal care!

The Troubles with Aluminum

The main concern with aluminum in deodorants is the diseases it has been linked to, like cancer and Alzheimer’s. Some sources suggest that antiperspirants are carcinogenic because they prevent the body from releasing toxins through the sweat glands. The aluminum used in antiperspirants has been found in breast cancer tissue, as it is likely that it can penetrate through the skin when there are small nicks caused by shaving. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the aluminum itself is the cause, of course, as research hasn’t been comprehensive or consistent.

This is what the National Cancer Institute, the U.S. government’s principal agency for cancer research, has to say: "Because studies of antiperspirants and deodorants and breast cancer have provided conflicting results, additional research would be needed to determine whether a relationship exist."

There also links between aluminum and Alzheimer’s, though once again, research is not definitive yet. Some studies have looked at the correlation between aluminum levels in drinking water and the rates of Alzheimer’s, but no studies have looked at antiperspirant use. Once again, we can assume that the potential risk of Alzheimer’s would be exacerbated if antiperspirants are applied to recently shaved skin.

Anahit doesn’t play games: “Because we shouldn't risk our health and put it into the dependency of future research, our main strategy in such cases is better safe than sorry.” At Nairian, we don’t like to take any risks with the health of our customers, so we’re staying away from aluminum.

Aluminum Isn’t the Only Ingredient to Worry About

Commercial antiperspirants and deodorants can contain lots of other chemicals that are best avoided. From synthetic fragrances to preservatives, there are all kinds of ingredients that can have a negative impact on both our health and the environment.

When it comes to synthetic fragrances in particular, the big concern is their impact on the hormone system and the way in which they can throw our body off balance. With synthetic preservatives, especially formaldehyde donors and parabens, the fear is that they could be carcinogenic.

Using a deodorant that contain these ingredients can be of particular concern, because of where it is normally applied. According to Anahit, “common sense tells us that it is better not to use any harsh chemicals so close to the breasts and right above the cluster of the important lymph nodes.” To learn more about the ingredients we avoid formulating with at Nairian read our post on banned ingredients.

What to do instead?

Surprisingly, the healthy alternative to commercial antiperspirants and deodorants is quite simple. Anahit’s advice is clear, “you don't need complex and possibly harmful chemistry to get rid of the unpleasant smell under your armpits. In reality, all you need are natural odour-killing substances. In our case, alcohol and antibacterial essential oils. Protection without side effects.”

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