Deodorants Vs. Antiperspirants: What's The Difference?

To maintain a happy and healthy internal balance, the human body needs to rid itself of built-up impurities that can be absorbed through the skin, as well as through our diets, over time.

These impurities can be a variety of things—ranging from alcohol, cholesterol, heavy metals and sometimes even pesticides. So how can the human body rid itself of these toxins? It secretes them from our pores through the release of sweat.

Sweating is necessary. Sweating is healthy. But let’s face it, sweating can be… unappealing.

It’s wet, it’s sticky and worst of all, it smells bad, so people tend to use products that attempt to mask or eliminate the odor that comes along with secreted sweat. To save from potential sweat-related embarrassment, there are two primary products most people choose from to protect against sweat-odor.

Those two products are deodorants and antiperspirants.

So, what’s the difference?

Perhaps the main difference between the two is the functional application with which they attempt to fight against sweat-odor.

Basically, the reason that sweat smells is that once sweat leaves the body through sweat glands, normal skin bacteria breaks down the liquid sweat. Body odor mainly originates from the apocrine glands in the armpits, which release a thick and oily sweat that is rich in proteins and lipids that bacteria on the skin feeds upon.

Deodorants do exactly what their name implies: “De”-meaning rid, and “odorize”- meaning smell.

So, deodorants look to rid the smell of sweat-odor by eliminating or masking the smell. Many deodorants do this by being alcohol based, as alcohol kills bacteria. And deodorants also have active ingredients that act as a perfume, to not only kill the bacteria that cause odor, but also to mask the odor itself.

As far as antiperspirants go, their function is also distinguishable by the name of the product.

“Anti”- meaning against, and “perspirant”-meaning sweat.

Antiperspirants fight against sweat by attempting to stop or significantly reduce perspiration and therefore, reduce the moist climate in which the bacteria thrive.

In order to accomplish this, most antiperspirants contain aluminum. Aluminium-based complexes react with electrolytes in the sweat to form a kind of “gel plug” in the duct of the sweat gland, which prevent the gland from excreting liquid.

The only problem with aluminum-based complexes is that they can have harmful effects on your skin. The entire concept of blocking your sweat glands so that sweat cannot escape is problematic, considering one of the main reasons we sweat in the first place is as an outlet for our bodies to excrete toxins that the body doesn’t want or need.

Claims over the past 10 years that detail how antiperspirants can cause breast cancer, or Alzheimer’s disease due to their aluminum content are ultimately unfounded, but there are still many other potential harmful effects of using antiperspirants over long periods of time.

All-in-all, the primary difference between deodorants and antiperspirants is the way in which they seek to fight sweat-odor.

Deodorants do it by killing the smell of sweat and masking it with more pleasant scents, while antiperspirants cut off the ability of the glands to excrete sweat entirely, through chemical reactions between aluminum complexes and our sweat glands.

For the more health conscious individual, deodorants probably pose less risks when it comes to long-term health of the bodies sweat glands.

There are hundreds, if not thousands of deodorants on the market, but some deodorant companies have chosen to follow a model that uses ingredients that are not only effective at fighting sweat-odor, but also prevalent in the natural world in order to reduce the risk of harming or irritating the sweat glands or skin.

Lavilin deodorant is a solid example of this model. Our natural deodorants accomplish their intended function with natural herbs and essential oils, and have big-time benefits when considering the long-term health of sweat glands and skin.

If you're interested in giving our Underarm Deodorant Cream a try, we're mailing out free samples for a limited time. Just clink the link above to get started!