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Alum deodorant

April 17, 2010

MANY OF YOU HAVE probably heard of the thai stone deodorant, also called crystal deodorant, or even rock crystal deodorant. This is sold as a cost-effective all natural deodorant.
I don’t argue, but there’s one problem. This little shiny rock has absolutely nothing to do with Thailand or rock crystals whatsoever. Actually it is a mineral called alum (INCI: potassium alum or sodium alum), which more specifically is form of aluminum.
This is probably why they don’t want to call it “alum”, because it brings your thought to the skin-damaging aluminum that the natural cosmetic companies tell you not to use. Still, I really don’t see how they can be allowed to call something rock crystal, when it has absolutely nothing to do with rock crystal (a rock crystal would probably not do anything for your antiperspiration).

THERE IS REASON to avoid using aluminum-based deodorants. Aluminum is a bactericidal and antiseptic, which means that the smell is precnted. Aluminum also prevents the moisture from coming out, as it stops the sweating. It is said that aluminum enters your body and clogs up your pores, but I have not yet come over any evidence as to how exactly the sweating is stopped – it seems it is not quite clear. Still (and maybe even more so), aluminum is not a healthy alternative when it comes to deodorants.
And as I said, alum is a form of aluminum. Does this mean it is also bad for you? The answer is no, and there are many reasons for this. First of all, alum is milder than aluminum, and so is not as effective, but also not as harmful. Also, the alum molecules apparently are bigger than the aluminum molecules, and do not enter our body in the same way.

A WHILE BACK, I had an alum deodorant, but as such it didn’t work very well for me. So, instead I ground it up and now I use it as a powder in deodorant mixtures, where I find it works really well. You can try just adding a little bit of water or aloe juice to alum powder. (It is going to foam like crazy. I don’t know why it does it, but it’s a lot of fun! :D) You can then use it as such, or add some other ingredients. I made a deodorant where I (after the foam had settled) added:

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • Cornstarch
  • Baking soda

Then I stirred in coconut fat until I had a consistency that I liked. I didn’t add any essential oils, because last time I did they irritated my skin too much, but some essential oils that have deodorizing qualities are: cypress, grapefruit, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, patchouli and rosewood. Or just add any e.o.s that you think smell nice.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. July 2, 2010 18:41

    The information you provided is definitely important to me and very much appreciated. After your post I did some research and find mine Healthy Deodorant: Lavanilla Lavender. It almost like home made: no harsh chemicals it all- only organic ingredients.
    Thanks!

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