7.31.2013

Natural Health Hack #2: Simple, Safe Deodorant

One of the most important changes you can make to your personal care routine is replacing your underarm antiperspirant with an all-natural, fragrance-free deodorant.  

Why should we eliminate the use of antiperspirant?  Because the body needs to sweat.  Sweat carries toxins and waste products from the inside to the outside of the body.  Additionally, sweating is the body's way of regulating internal temperature.  If we prevent the body from sweating by plugging the pores with chemical crap, which is how most antiperspirants work, we are not only causing a build-up of waste at an area dense with lymph nodes that will absorb and redistribute these harmful wastes, but also forcing the body to operate at a higher-than-ideal temperature.

So, how do we quit the antiperspirant habit without smelling like a street corner bum?

  • Step 1: Toss your antiperspirant in the trash and get comfortable with your sweat.
  • Step 2: Buy a stick of Crystal.
natural health
Don't worry, boys.  They come in manly colors, too.
Sure, there are lots of natural deodorant products out there, but don't waste your time.  Crystal is the simplest, the cheapest, and the only one that works. 

How does it work?  This natural deodorant is made from mineral salts.  When applied to clean skin, these salts create an environment that is inhospitable to the bacteria that feed on our sweat and cause the distinctive aroma we call "B.O."  The salts are completely biodegradable.  (The roll-on version contains cellulose for consistency, but I don't recommend the roll-on.  I found it didn't work as well.  I've never tried the spray.  Just get the stick.)  

Widely available at drug and health food stores, one stick costs between 5 and 7 dollars.  It's odorless, it's invisible, and it lasts forever.  One application applied immediately after your shower will last for 24 hours.  I've had my current stick for more than two years, and there's still plenty left.

When you first switch to a mineral salt deodorant, you might find that you seem to sweat profusely.  This is just a phase.  After the body has adjusted to its new, more efficient regulatory function, you will sweat less and, provided you eat a simple, whole food diet and do some sort of exercise each day (Ashtanga yoga, for example), you will sweat clean.  You will also feel better, knowing that you've made a simple, lasting effort to improve your health, save money, and reduce your environmental impact.

Links to Purchase

HINT:  The formulas are the same, but the men's stick is usually cheaper.

Readers:  Have you tried the Crystal?  Is there a natural alternative you like better?  Let me know in the comments!

13 comments:

  1. I started using a crystal (different brand) deodorant about a month ago and was a believer after the first day! I have not stunk since!! Not sure why I didn't try it sooner.

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    1. Which brand, Dottie? I haven't come across another "salt rock" type product.

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  2. Strangely the crystal seems to work for most, but not all people. Like me. And I so wanted it to work too! But baking soda does. I make a mix of baking soda and a natural powder (more powder than soda by a lot) and just gently daub it on. No more B.O. Just in case anyone reading is one of the unlucky few for whom the salt cure doesn't work.

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  3. I tried the crystal stick & loved it, but after several years it caused my underarms to break out in a rash. Not sure why. I switched to the crystal stone, which is exactly what it sounds like. Comes in a little cloth pouch. I wet it with warm water before applying. NO adverse reactions for @8 years now. Keeps me smelling great. :-) And I've never been fussy about sweating -- do it every day! -- so that part was easy.

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  4. I also use baking soda, I don't even mix it with anything, just wet my finger, dip it in the box, spread the powder on my armpits. If I wanted to be all fancy I could add a little rose oil or something, but for the sake of efficiency in the morning I usually don't.

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    1. Interesting. I've not tried baking soda but, based on all the comments, it seems to be the best alternative to salt sticks.

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  5. Thanks for posting about this, Megan! Do you know if the crystal stick is "sticky"? That's the problem I had with the other natural deodorants - I stayed sticky all day long.

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    1. The Crystal is not at all sticky. It looks and feels like a stone. You just wet the tip and roll it over the skin. It feels like there's nothing there at all, which was something I had to get used to when I first made the switch.

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  6. I had to write a follow-up comment... I went out a bought a Crystal stick and I've been using it for 4 days now. OMG, Megan! This is LIFE-CHANGING! I was hoping for something that worked marginally well, but this is even better than my old deodorant/antiperspirant! I put it through the test by doing a really sweaty class last night and then another this morning with only one application of the stick before each. No smell! No BO. I cannot believe it. I'm sold. Thank you for suggesting this.

    Now, since you're so good at this, I've been trying to switch to a natural toothpaste as well. I like Tom's brand, but I'm confused by the Fluoride/No-Fluoride category. Any thoughts? I know my dentist is probably pro-fluoride, but I wonder what you recommend, including other brands?

    Thanks for all your help!

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    1. Hooray! I'm so happy the Crystal is working for you. As for the toothpaste question, that is an excellent topic and I do have an opinion. Natural oral hygiene, coming right up!

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  7. Hey Megan,

    I've tried Crystal before but it doesn't seem to work for me as well as it has for you. I'm curious if you've tried Lavilin? I really, really like it!

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    1. Hi, Anon. I have not tried Lavilin, but I just checked it out online. I would hesitate to try it for two reasons: 1) it has way too many ingredients, and 2) one of those ingredients is "fragrance." Now, it's possible that the fragrance is made exclusively from essential oils or something, but it doesn't say that on the bottle.

      The important thing to remember when using Crystal is that it must be applied to CLEAN skin. The first thing I do when I get out of the shower is roll on my Crystal. Or, if I need a second application, I take the time to wash my underarms well with soap before applying. I will say this, though: there have been occasions when I'm under especially high stress or just before/during my period when the Crystal didn't work as well.

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