Emma and I have become what we call “closet hippies.” It just means that we are slowly becoming more aware of what we are putting on and in our bodies and that we are trying to treat ourselves better without screaming it to the whole world. We have switched to several natural products and it has been a pretty crazy transition. The hardest transition for me has been deodorant.
My underarms are extremely sensitive. The first time I noticed this was in 2013 in Okinawa, Japan. I put deodorant on and went roughly five minutes before I put a shirt on. The sensitivity started and since I had never experienced it before, I didn’t know the cause. I put on a shirt and walked to the store. On the way back from the store the sensitivity got so bad that I had to walk with my arms outstretched so that my underarms couldn’t touch. It was a bizarre experience. Me being the “boy” that I am decided not to worry about it and just keep on pushing on. I started having to put a shirt on immediately after application or else the extreme sensitivity would return.
It wasn’t until I got with Emma that I got some help. This help was her discovering that Old Spice was known to cause sensitivity and bleeding of the underarms. It was time for me to move on. The first deodorant I tried after switching was Dove Men + Care. I had always enjoyed using Dove’s Men + Care Soap, so I figured switching to the deodorant would be an easy fix. The first thing I noticed with Dove was the easier application. It was smoother than the Old Spice. The second thing I noticed was that it lasted longer. I would go 12-16 hours with it on and not notice any nasty smells. Sadly, it did nothing to reduce my underarm sensitivity.
Emma decided that since I would have to switch deodorants again, why not try something natural? This is really when it all started. The first deodorant I tried was Arm and Hammer Essentials. While it’s not the most natural deodorant out there, it didn’t contain aluminum and that was a positive for us. It did not keep us from sweating very much but it did keep us from smelling bad. I don’t have a lot of negatives about this brand and this is my go to in a pinch. We decided to keep trying to find something more natural.
Our next test was Crystal® Body Deodorant Stick. My immediate reaction was that it was unlike any deodorant I had ever seen. Crystal is made from natural mineral salt; it’s a rock. To apply, you have to wet the rock and apply. The next thing I realized was that this deodorant did nothing to help prevent sweating. While it did a fair job of preventing smells, it was hard to keep using. Using it after the gym was almost pointless as you would just not stop sweating and the smell would eventually make its way through. The real positive experience that I can share about using Crystal is that my underarms did get a little better while using it. A couple months into using it I accidentally dropped it and it shattered. That was the end of that era.
The next deodorant I tried was Tom’s of Maine. Tom’s of Maine deodorant smells great for about an hour or so. After an hour, it’s time to reapply or pick something else. After my underarms returned to their sensitive state we decided to move on.
Every Man Jack was next in line on the deodorant coaster. Other than the Arm and Hammer Essentials Deodorant, this is my favorite. It did a great job of masking my smell while not damaging my underarms any more than they already were. Sadly, it also didn’t improve them at all. This was my hopeful favorite after several failures. After finishing the stick of deodorant I decided to try another brand.
This time I decided to go with Schmidt’s Natural Deodorant that I found in Costco. This was a big commitment because it came in a three pack. The first thing I noticed was the strong smell. I had the lemon scented deodorant and it smelled exactly like I had put a freshly cut lemon in my underarms. The smell goes away after about two hours. It does do well of masking the smell for a few more hours. The biggest concern I have for using this deodorant is the pit stains it causes. The stains are so bad that they have turned my light grey shirts completely black in the underarms. It’s very strange and definitely something I have not gotten used to. It also crumbles when putting it on. I feel as though I need to comb out my underarm hair to get the different pieces out. Obviously, I don’t, but it is strange. I’m going to stick with this deodorant into the fall and winter to see how it continues to work. I’ll have to wear undershirts more to prevent my pit stains from showing, but that’s okay with me for now.
As of now I still do not have a favorite, steady deodorant. I’m going to continue my search until I find the one that I love. Have you experimented with any natural deodorants? If so, what is your favorite and why? If you have not, I recommend giving it a try. It’s a fun adventure and I feel like I’m treating my body just a little bit better.