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Picking Out a Deodorant: the Best for Your Body

Sweating is essential to good health – it helps you keep cool when you’re working hard or feeling stressed, so your body doesn’t overheat. However, the odor and wetness that come with sweating aren’t so essential. In fact, by choosing the right deodorant, you can prevent these issues altogether. ... Read More

Picking Out a Deodorant: the Best for Your Body

Sweating is essential to good health – it helps you keep cool when you’re working hard or feeling stressed, so your body doesn’t overheat. However, the odor and wetness that come with sweating aren’t so essential. In fact, by choosing the right deodorant, you can prevent these issues altogether.

How do you know which deodorant you should use? Some products promise to keep you dry, while others promote a clean scent. You can find formulas that go on clear, brands that are made specifically for men or women, and many products that guarantee all-day freshness. As overwhelming as the drugstore selection may be, you simply have to answer one question: “How often do I sweat?” The answer determines whether you’ll need a deodorant, antiperspirant or a combination of the two, and can help you find the best option for your lifestyle.

Deodorant alone neutralizes the bacteria in your sweat through a combination of fragrance, alcohol and triclosan. Those who sweat heavily often find themselves having to reapply deodorant multiple times during the day for it to be fully effective.

Antiperspirant, by contrast, blocks your body’s sweat glands with a formula of aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium tetrachlorohydrex. These aluminum salts ensure your body temporarily stays dry.

Even among the antiperspirants sold in stores, the percentage of active ingredients varies as well. Drugstores typically carry a 10-percent aluminum chloride formulation, while prescription-strength products go as high as 20 percent. You’ll discover, by trial and error, which suits your needs better.

Along with these factors, manufacturers create a range of applicators, which may affect your skin and whether they’ll stick to your clothes:

  • Gel – This option is said to leave fewer white marks on your armpits, but is known for sticking to your clothing. As a tip, apply this deodorant and then wait a bit before dressing.
  • Spray – Men’s deodorants tend to have this formula, as it’s ideal for handling thick arm hair. However, sprays contain a greater percentage of alcohol, which can irritate the skin.
  • Sticks – The ingredient dimethicone soothes the skin, which is ideal if you shave your armpits. As a downside, the formula goes on white, which can lead to streaks and clumping.
  • Roll-On – Considered the first commercially-available deodorant, roll-on products use a ball to apply liquid to the skin, which can offer a more controlled application. Like gel options, this type of product can often take a while to dry, and may stick to or stain clothing.
  • Creams – More of a high-end, specialty item, cream deodorants have seen their popularity grow, as the formula tends to be better for sensitive skin. Manufacturers typically add a hydrator in addition to aluminum.

Not every deodorant will work, however. Redness, an itchy sensation or a burning feeling often means the formula is too strong or contains an irritant. It’s advised that, when this occurs, you wash the area with soap and water before trying a gentler product.

Even when you’ve found the right deodorant, effectiveness may wane. Experts claim that your body’s bacteria develop immunity to the formula, so, to ensure you have sufficient protection, it’s ideal to switch deodorants occasionally.