Women smelling armpit

How to Detox Your Armpits

If you’re reading this, it means that you’re either thinking of making the switch to all-natural deodorant, or you’ve already made the switch and you’re confused why you’re a little stinky. Either way, we’re here to answer your questions.

Why Detox Your Armpits?

One of the things they don’t tell you about conventional deodorants is that the ingredients they contain interfere with your body’s natural process to remove bacteria. In fact, the longer you use products that contain these ingredients, the more likely your body is to become dependent on those chemicals to keep stink at bay. 

Common deodorant ingredients

  • Aluminum: Some studies have shown a connection between aluminum to cancer and Alzheimer’s Disease.
  • Parabens: Disrupts natural hormones and are frequently found in biopsied tissue with breast cancer.
  • Formaldehyde: Known carcinogen that kills germs, but also can kill healthy cells
  • Phthalates: Natural hormone disruptors that can create an imbalance in your system.
  • Propylene glycol: Otherwise known as antifreeze. Carries a slight risk of being toxic for your immune system.

Each of these ingredients can find their way into your bloodstream. Have you ever noticed that the skin on your armpits feels different than say, the skin on your arms? That thin skin in your armpits is especially susceptible to chemicals seeping through the pores and affecting your lymph nodes. By the way, your lymph nodes play a major role in your immune system. The lymph nodes’ job is to help get rid of toxins, cancer cells, viruses, bacteria, and more. If you’ve ever felt a little lump in your armpit, that is your lymph nodes trying to get rid of something nasty that crept into your pits. Basically, applying conventional deodorant is kind of like putting carcinogenic chemicals and harmful toxins right on top of your lymph nodes! 

The In-between Stink

There’s something you should absolutely know before buying all-natural deodorant. It probably won’t work super well to begin with. After years of using deodorants with ingredients that throw your systems out of wack, your body has forgotten how to manage bacteria (and by extension, odor) on its own. Switching to all-natural deodorant is a process. Think of it like going back to school and natural deodorant is the teacher. As your body gets used to not having those nasty chemicals around, it will naturally correct the bacterial imbalance in your armpits, and your sweat won’t smell nearly as bad!

Also, just another bit of inspiration, studies have shown that conventional deodorant messes with the natural microbiome of your underarms, causing bacteria to overproduce and make you smell even worse when your body stops depending on chemicals to control odor. This is why sticking it out through the detox period is so imperative! 

How to Detox Your Armpits

The first step in a thorough detox in buying an all-natural deodorant. Which is probably why you’re here. But be warned! The first few days after you stop using your old deodorant, your sweat could be extra smelly. Reason being your body is still reliant on the deodorant to balance bacteria levels. It might be a wise idea to work out from home for a few days when making the switch to all-natural deodorant if you’re feeling a little self- conscious about it 

4 tips for getting through the detox period

1. Drink Plenty of Water: Water helps your body remove everyday toxins in an efficient, natural way. Drink filtered water for the greatest benefits!
2. Mind What You Eat: Believe it or not, certain foods will change the way that your body odor smells! You can actively avoid smelling worse than you need to. The safest route is to go vegetarian for a few days, which will maintain a neutral body odor. As you might expect, beware of garlic and onions!
3. Dry Off Carefully After a Shower: Think back to high school science. Bacteria love warm, moist environments! Which basically describes your armpit after coming out of the shower. Make sure you dry your armpits well, and when you’re on the go, wipe off excess sweat in your pits with a paper towel.
4. Get Moving and Sweat: From an early age, we’re taught that smelling bad is gross, and therefore sweating is gross. However, trying to prevent sweating from happening altogether isn’t healthy or natural. Antiperspirants may prevent sweating, but they clog pores and block sweat glands with aluminum in the process. In other words, you sweat inside the body instead of outside! This means that a nasty combination of bacteria and chemicals stay deep in your tissues, rather than making their way out, like nature intended. A little exercise to break a sweat, and maybe a little time in the sauna, can help speed up the detoxification process as your body relearns how to control bacteria naturally.

Let's Recap 

  • Remember that detoxing is a process
  • A little sweat is good for you. If you’re not sweating, you’re not efficiently removing toxins from your body.
  • If you shave your armpits, shave at night and apply deodorant in the morning to avoid irritation (typically caused by slight exfoliation and reaction to baking soda) 

Bonus! DIY Armpit Detox Mask Recipe

The key ingredient in this toxin removing mask is bentonite clay. What makes this special ingredient so cool is the fact that it’s made of aged volcanic ash. Its unique composition literally absorbs toxins. Don’t ask us how – it just does. Apple cider vinegar, otherwise known as ACV, is a very productive component of the mask. ACV contains tons of enzymes, protein, and probiotic bacteria that give ACV anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. As a team, ACV and bentonite clay kill bacteria while also removing impurities from your pores!

Bentonite Clay Mask Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 T healing bentonite clay
  • 1 t apple cider vinegar
  • 1-2 t water

Instructions

  1. Mix all of the ingredients in a small, non-metal bowl. Use a non-metal spoon.
  2. Stir until the mixture is nice and creamy.
  3. Apply an even layer to clean armpits and let dry for 5-20 minutes. You may experience some redness from an increase of blood flow to the area, but that should quickly go away. If you feel a burning sensation, wash off the mask. 
  4. Take a shower and rinse off the mixture, or use a damp, warm cloth.
  5. Repeat daily until you see results!

Keep using this mask every day until you see an improvement in your scent. Aim for a week for the best results.

 

Going "natural" doesn't have to be a smelly ordeal, and take it from us, it's a worthwhile step toward a healthier you. For our poor armpits, which rarely see the light of day, a little attention will make a lasting difference.