I Detoxed My Armpits (And You Should Too)

Early one morning this summer, as I hopped out of the shower, I suddenly realized something very odd. I didn’t smell fresh. I had just shampooed, shaved, and scrubbed my whole body, but I still didn’t smell clean.

I had noticed that no matter how much deodorant I put on, I just always smelt a little bit sweaty. I am a pretty active person, so it was quite alarming to me that my deodorant just seemed to stop working.

What I should clarify is that I wasn’t just using deodorant. I was using antiperspirant-deodorant. I have been since I came home from a classmate’s bowling birthday party when I was a kid and my mom told me I smelt horrible (by the way, all of my Grade 2 friends thought I was really cool for wearing deodorant).

After researching it a bit more, I learned that using antiperspirant can actually cause a bacterial imbalance in the armpit, and make you smell worse. I decided that it was time to make the switch to natural deodorant into order to detox my body and hopefully once again feel fresh.

Why Detox

Pretty much every brand of drugstore deodorant for women is also antiperspirant. What this means is that it is intended to stop your body from sweating. They contain aluminum salts that basically clog your pores to reduce how much sweat the body is releasing. Antiperspirant can cause an increase of actinobacteria, which is what is responsible for foul-smelling odor.

There are several reasons why aluminum is bad for you. The first is that it has been linked to breast cancer and diseases of the mind, like Alzheimer’s. The second issue is that sweating is actually good for you. It helps to get out all of the toxins from your body.

Aluminum-free deodorant also won’t turn your favourite white T-shirt yellow. So that in itself is a win.

Kaia Naturals the takesumi detox ($21)

Made without: Baking soda, parabens, propylene-glycol and aluminum

This bamboo charcoal deodorant has natural fermentation technology that helps to fight odor-causing bacteria (aka you can switch to natural deodorant and still smell cute). It is 99% natural and vegan. The activated charcoal within the deodorant helps to draw toxins and bacteria out of your body. The stick itself is a black colour, but it goes on clear and won’t stain your clothing. It comes in three scents: juicy bamboo, cold pressed rose and lime mint.

Stages of Detox

It takes five weeks for your body to fully adjust to switching from antiperspirant-deodorant to natural deodorant. It is important to be aware of all of the stages so that you what to expect during the detox.

(ONE) The Switch

The switch went like a breeze. I got the Lime Mint Takesumi Detox and found that the mint even made the product feel cool upon application. I applied it twice a day, which for me is normal.

(TWO) A Little Smelly

As I continued using the product, I felt like I needed to apply it more frequently. I was applying it first thing in the morning, when I got to work, after my walk home and before I went to bed. During this stage, the odor that comes out of your body is all of the built up bacteria in your armpits starting to be released.

(THREE) A Lot Sweaty

Suddenly, my body started to produce so. much. sweat. My armpits were soaked after my 20-minute walk to work. Even just sitting at my desk, I was sweating. While this wasn’t the most fun part of the detox, I knew that I needed it because it meant all of the toxins were coming out of my body.

(FOUR) Everything is Fresh Again

At the end of the detox, when your body has fully adjusted, the sweat and odor subsides. Although my armpits do get sweatier before, it doesn’t smell as bad when I do sweat. I finally feel fresh again when I get out of the shower.

Final Thoughts

I am really happy that I made this switch. I am trying to become more conscious of what I am putting in my body, and clearly using antiperspirant was not helping me. Although stage two and three of the detox was not the most fun thing in the world, as long as you carry the deodorant with you in your purse you will be fine.

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