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Les différents types de déodorant

The Different Types of Deodorant.

Deodorants are part of our daily hygiene routine. They don't block underarm sweat production (they're not antiperspirants), but they do combat perspiration odors. It's important to know the different types of deodorant, so you can choose the one that's right for you. Whether in roll-on, spray, cream/gel or stick form, deodorants come in a variety of forms, which you'll find in this article.

What form does a deodorant take?

Deodorants come in many forms. Find out how they differ from one another:

  • Sprays:

    This form of deodorant is prized for its practicality. Sprays are easy to apply and carry around. In this form, deodorant is more often an antiperspirant. It takes the form of a fluid liquid that blocks perspiration and appears as a dry powder when applied under the arms. Antiperspirant sprays are also appreciated for the refreshing sensation they provide on application. Today, they are available in mini format, so you can slip them into your handbag or similar.

    However, antiperspirants in spray format often contain alcohol to speed up drying time on the skin. To avoid irritation, be careful not to choose a deodorant with alcohol derivatives.

  • Roll-on deodorants:

    Equally practical and ergonomic, roll-ons provide a certain amount of underarm moisture that fights the formation of odor-causing bacteria. However, this moisture is temporary, and dries quickly.

  • Stick deodorants:

    Also known as stick deodorants, the stick is the solid format of the deodorant/antiperspirant. It often contains nourishing ingredients like butters and offers a pleasant, rich texture.

  • Creams:

    New to the market, deodorant creams are recommended for sensitive skin, as they often contain ingredients to moisturize and nourish the skin. They are also generally alcohol-free.

Classic or organic/natural deodorant: which to choose?

Recently, classic antiperspirants and deodorants have been the subject of controversy because of certain ingredients:

  • Aluminum salts:

    Aluminum salts are present in many antiperspirants to combat perspiration. They can be found on I.N.C.I. lists under the following names: Aluminium Chloryde, Aluminium Chlorohydrate, Aluminium Chlorydrex, Aluminium Sesquichlorydrate, Aluminium Zirconium. When applied to the skin, aluminum salts precipitate and associate with dead skin, forming plugs that obstruct the sweat glands and thus block perspiration. Aluminum salts are bactericides. They eliminate the bacteria present en masse in the armpits and responsible for unpleasant odors.

    Several studies have correlated the presence of aluminum salts in breast cells with the development of malignant tumors, and hence breast cancer. Even if the CSSC (European Scientific Committee on Consumer Safety) issued a report in 2019 attesting to the very low cutaneous absorption (of the order of 0.00052%) of aluminum salts, even on shaved or depilated skin, as a precautionary principle, it remains preferable to exclude them from your daily hygiene products.

  • Parabens:

    Some deodorants contain parabens for their antimicrobial properties. However, these compounds are recognized endocrine disruptors (= they upset the hormonal balance). So avoid choosing a deodorant containing, for example, Butylparaben or Propylparaben on its INCI list. 

  • Triclosan:

  • This ingredient acts as an antimicrobial agent, preservative and deodorant. Nevertheless, it is a suspected endocrine disruptor and carcinogen, as well as a potential skin and eye irritant. Its concentration is now regulated in deodorants (other than in spray form): it must not exceed 0.3%.

  • Talc :

    This mineral powder is renowned for its ability to absorb moisture and excess perspiration. However, talc is now widely controversial. In 2012, ANSES (French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health and Safety) concluded that it was not possible to exclude the presence of asbestos fibers in certain talc deposits. In addition, studies have demonstrated adverse effects on the respiratory system following talc inhalation.

  • Alcohol:

    Ethanol is often added to conventional deodorants for its antiseptic properties and to reduce drying time. Nevertheless, this compound has a strong drying power and can cause irritation, redness and tingling of the underarms.

All the compounds listed above are generally excluded from organic and natural deodorant formulas. The latter contain gentler, skin- and environment-friendly alternatives such as the following ingredients:

  • Baking soda.

    An alternative solution to aluminum salts, sodium bicarbonate has naturally absorbent, anti-odor and anti-inflammatory properties to soothe aggressed skin.

  • Clays:

    Thanks to their microporous structures, certain clays such as diatom powder and white clay are drying agents that can absorb their weight in moisture. Their antibacterial action also acts on bacteria present on the skin, thus limiting the appearance of unpleasant odors.

  • Certain essential oils:

    The benchmark essential oil for underarm perspiration is palmarosa. However, others have also proved their worth, such as clary sage or lavender.

  • Triethyl citrate:

    This organically approved compound is produced by esterifying citric acid with ethanol. Because of its ability to inhibit the enzymatic breakdown of sweat components, it effectively combats body odor. It also has antibacterial properties.

What about alum stone? Alum stone is not as natural as its name suggests. It can even be a 100% synthetic stone made from Ammonium Alum or synthetic Ammonium Sulfate, a by-product of the nylon chemical industry. In all cases, whether natural or synthetic, alum stone contains aluminum salts.


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