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You know those deodorant ads where the women can’t seem to resist the men? That’s right, Axe. While the commercials and advertising seem to have captured the hearts of young men everywhere, the deodorant itself may pose a risk to your health. The truth is that this deodorant is loaded with endocrine disrupting chemicals.

Endocrine disruptors

Next time you’re in the deodorant aisle at the store consider that endocrine disruptors, such as the chemicals found in Axe deodorant products, are synthetic chemicals that have hormone-like effects on the human body. They interfere with the endocrine system by either mimicking or blocking our natural hormones, disrupting their natural functions.

According to the Endocrine Society, there is evidence that endocrine disruptors, such as the ingredients found in Axe products, have effects on reproduction, can result in breast development, prostate cancer, affect your thyroid metabolism, and can lead to obesity.

But what should you be on the look out for when buying deodorant? Their list of ingredients is quite lengthy and doesn’t make any sense to the common lay person. So here’s the list of ingredients to watch out for.

Aluminum Zirconium Tetrachlorohydrex Gly

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endocrine system

This is the active ingredient in deodorant/antiperspirant. It acts to block the sweat ducts preventing you from emitting fluids from the skin. While deodorant companies say that this ingredient is safe, a few animal studies have shown kidney and renal system effects at very low doses and reproductive effects at moderate doses.

The list of effects this compound has on the body is quite lengthy, and they include skin irritation, mental decline, Alzheimer’s, and cancer. If you happen to be using the spray version of Axe deodorant, know that your exposure to toxic chemicals is enhanced by possible inhalation.

Cocamidopropyl Betaine

men putting on deodorant

A derivative of coconut oil and dimethylaminopropylamine, it is used to reduce surface tension across the skin of the applied area. This is another ingredient you wouldn’t want to rub on your skin necessarily, Cocamidopropyl Betaine is very toxic and has been shown to cause cancer in animal tests. The potential for this ingredient to be contaminated with a dangerous carcinogen called Nitrosamines is very high. This carcinogen is linked to cancer in animals and humans.

PPG-14 Butyl Ether (polypropylene glycol)

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This ingredient is used to condition the skin making it more supple and soft. But unfortunately, this compound comes from the paraben family and is linked to breast cancer. It’s also said to disturb the body’s hormonal balance and to mimic estrogen. Butyl Ethers are toluene derivatives which are a toxic petrochemical compound that has a harmful effect on the reproductive system.

This compound can cause skin irritation and is harmful to your kidney’s and liver. It is poisonous in high amounts and is used in pesticides.

PEG-8 Distearate

man putting on deodorant

This ingredient is included to clean the skin by helping water and oil dissolve into a solvent so they can be rinsed away. It also helps in water retention during storage, so products don’t dry out. There are a number of troubling compounds found in its ingredients, including, ethylene oxide and polycyclic aromatic compounds including benzene. Additionally, a number of heavy metals linked to cancer are also found in its makeup, such as lead, iron, cobalt, nickel, cadmium, and arsenic.

The compounds in this ingredient have been found to be breast cancer triggers.

BHT

This ingredient is an antioxidant and is used to preserve the product. It can induce allergic reactions in the skin and acts as a tumor promoter. The scary thing about this ingredient is that there is much evidence that it accumulates in the body over time affecting the lungs, liver, and kidneys. Additionally high levels of BHT may mimic estrogen.

Make your own deodorant

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Fortunately, all of these toxic compounds can be avoided by just making your own deodorant. It’s easy and inexpensive and here’s what you’ll need

  • 3 tablespoons Coconut Oil
  • 3 tablespoons Baking Soda
  • 2 tablespoons Shea Butter
  • 2 tablespoons Arrowroot or organic cornstarch
  • essential oils

First, melt the shea butter and coconut oil in a boiler over medium heat until just melted. Remove from heat and add baking soda and arrowroot (you can use more baking soda instead). Mix until dissolved and then add essential oils. Pour into a glass container for storage but make sure you store it somewhere cool because it will melt if warmed. It will take several hours to harden completely, but you’ve just made your own chemically free deodorant!

For information on how to do an armpit cleanse, read this!

Real farmacy. The Products that Make Men Grow Breasts, Linked to Cancers of the prostate and Liver http://www.realfarmacy.com/men-breasts-cancers/ Accessed: November 17, 2016.

Eluxe Magazine. Raising a stink about the dangers of body sprays http://eluxemagazine.com/beauty/raising-a-stink-about-body-sprays/ Accessed: November 17, 2016.

Wired. What’s inside Dove Original deodorant http://www.wired.co.uk/article/whats-inside-dove-original-deodorant

Published: June 2, 2016. Accessed: November 17, 2016.

Cosmetics info. PEG-8 Distearate http://www.cosmeticsinfo.org/ingredient/peg-8-distearate Accessed: November 17, 2016.

David Suzuki. BHA and BHT http://davidsuzuki.org/issues/health/science/toxics/chemicals-in-your-cosmetics—bha-and-bhti/ Accessed: November 17, 2016.

Wellness Mama. How to Make Natural Deodorant http://wellnessmama.com/1523/natural-deodorant/ Published: November 17, 2016. Accessed: November 17, 2016.

Youtube. Natural Homemade Deodorant (3 ingredients!) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bXofKySG4A Published: February 24, 2013.

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