It’s unfortunate, but many products we use every day are not great for our bodies nor our environment. Deodorants often contain many bad ingredients; antibacterials, diethanolamine (DEA), formaldehyde, petroleum distillates, fragrance and parabens. Stick deodorant applies them to your skin, while aerosol sprays puts them into the air as well.
Obviously, deodorant for most people is something they would rather not live without, but that does not mean there aren’t options available to have less of an impact on the environment.
Focus on packaging that can be easily be recycled, avoid the smaller sized deodorant that you will have to replace more often with a larger one. Also, read deodorant labels carefully. Despite many companies making an effort to provide hypoallergenic and natural products, it seems that what you see and what you get could be two entirely different things. “Natural” and “Hypoallergenic” are two catch-phrases that are unregulated by the FDA, which means there doesn’t have to be any credibility to these claims.
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Besides the impact that deodorant processing and packaging has on the environment, deodorant itself can impact the environment and our health. Deodorants contain chemicals like triclosan, which is one of the most commonly found chemicals in US waterways. Manufacturing these chemicals also has a negative impact on the environment. The vast majority of deodorants, even some natural ones, contain aluminum, which can be harmful to your body.
While most aerosol products no longer use CFCs and have a supposedly lessened effect on the environment, aerosol deodarants can also be harmful to the environment. Aerosol chemicals (propane, methyl, etc) are often bad for the lungs and can be dangerous if leaked into water systems. Additionally, the amount of waste produced by endless use of deodorant poses a problem.
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