It’s something you reach for every grocery trip. You’re constantly repurchasing it and sometimes testing out different variations of it. There are certain keywords you look for on the packaging. You look to see the longevity, the formula and even often look at the scent. What you don’t pay attention to is whether it’s a deodorant or antiperspirant and there is definitely a difference between deodorant and antiperspirant.
We generalize this entire body-care category as ‘deodorants’ when the truth is there’s a difference between deodorants and antiperspirants. We use the two interchangeably, not paying much attention to what our body needs and which of the two is likely to meet those needs. You could have been using the wrong one all this time, and that may be why you feel like nothing is working for you!
The Difference Between Deodorant and Antiperspirant
To put it simply; deodorants stop the smell and antiperspirants stop the sweat. Just take a second to think about the words themselves, break them down. A deodorant is naturally going to de-oderize you. While anantiperspirantt is anti perspiration. It really is as simple as that.
The sole purpose of a deodorant is to prevent your body from smelling. You apply a deodorant to avoid some serious body odor but not to avoid sweating. Once you apply a deodorant, if you take part in any activity you will sweat. But what a deodorant is going to do is help avoid any odorous smell that sweat can have.
Deodorant works to target the bacteria produced on your armpit. They contain a chemical that works to make your armpits too acidic for this bacteria to be supported. Without this bacteria, your sweat doesn’t smell and you don’t have to worry about it getting offensive!
Deodorants are ideal for those of you that don’t lead a super active lifestyle and just need something to keep your BO in check. They can also be great for you if you aren’t really a heavy sweater, but just want to ensure that when you do- it smells fine and does not radiate across the entire office!
If you’re looking for something that’s going to nip your sweat in the bud though, antiperspirant comes through for you.
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While we generally refer to this entire category as “deodorants” it is actually antiperspirant that most people need. Deodorants may help to avoid your sweat from causing any smell, antiperspirants are here to avoid any sweat being produced in the first place.
Antiperspirant generally have the same ingredients found in deodorants. These ingredients work to kill the same aforementioned bacteria just to be safe. But what an antiperspirant really does is work to plug your sweat glands.
They contain ingredients such as aluminium and zicronium that close off your sweat glands. This way, you never actually produce any sweat.
The Problem with Antiperspirant
Looking at the facts, it may seem obvious that antiperspirant is the best option out there. Why worry about managing how your sweat smells with deodorants when you can just not sweat at all?
Well, the truth is that the elimination of sweat comes with its own drawbacks. One of the most common issues with antiperspirants is their connection to breast cancer. Some studies have found that the two are linked. The aluminium in antiperspirants can cause an uncontrolled growth of cells. This growth is cells can put you at serious risk of breast cancer.
Another common dilemma with antiperspirant is just how unnatural it is. People believe that while body odor sucks, your body needs to sweat to function. Closing off these sweat glands is an unnatural dangerous way to treat your body. Many believe you should allow it to function naturally and not try to tamper with it.
The decision ultimately comes back to you. As long as you can fully understand the purpose and the way a deodorant and antiperspirant work, you’re well informed enough to figure out which is likely to work best for you.