When it comes to deodorants, for me, it's necessary to go natural. And it's one of those things that people always ask me about. Why do I use natural ones? Are regular ones unsafe? There are plenty of people out there who buy organic produce, rub on organic lotion and drive hybrid cars but still swipe on their artificial, baby-powder scented antiperspirant. They fear that deodorants without sweat-reducing and body odor masking chemicals don't work. And no matter how natural you want to be, you still don't want to smell that natural. 

If you peruse the back of your deodorant/antiperspirant's ingredient list, chances are you'll need some sort of dictionary handy to decipher the coded words. These multi-syllable words are actually toxic chemicals that are added to prevent your sweat glands from functioning normally (which is what sweating technically is. it's normal and necessary). They're also chemical-based fragrances that coat your underarm, masking odor with artificial scents. That's enough to send me to the natural deodorants. But studies have linked these products to both Alzheimer's disease and breast cancer. And although nothing has been proven, I'd rather be safe now than sorry later on.

Here are a few of the worst offending ingredients to look for on your label. Aluminum is the most famous deodorant offender. It's thought to be a contributed to Alzheimer's disease and can be found disguised as aluminum chlorohydrate, aluminum zirconium or tetrachlorohydrex gly. Triclosan is actually classified as a pesticide by the FDA. Some people believe this chemical is stored in body fat and contains carcinogenic contaminants. Talc sounds innocent, but it's often polluted with asbestos. enough said. Parabens are preservatives that may be linked to breast cancer. And Propylene glycol-an ingredient added to your car's antifreeze-is usually added to help the product penetrate into your skin. But some believe it damages your organs after it sinks in-including your liver and kidneys. On top of that. if it's going into my car, I really don't want it going into me.

As for me, instead of wasting time reading labels, I simply use natural, organic deodorants and my current favorites come from Erbaviva. Right now I'm especially obsessed with the Jasmine Grapefruit Deodorant. The chemical and aluminum-free spray counteracts the growth of bacteria and has a light, pretty feminine scent. My husband enjoys the Erbaviva Lemon Sage Deodorant. It has a rich, bold scent and blends organic Sage, Lemon, Patchouli and Tea Tree. Weleda's spray deodorants are Saffron Rouge best sellers and the Citrus Deodorant has a wonderful fresh, unisex scent.

But my favorite thing from Weleda to use under my arms is actually a product for feet. Sure, it sounds zany, but the Weleda Foot Balm is an ideal solution when you need to deodorize post shaving or waxing. If you've ever used an alcohol-based deodorant before (and all of the ones listed above fall into that category) then you know how ridiculously painful it can be to flood your post-shave open pores with alcohol. Instead I apply a little of the Foot Balm under my arms. The calming formula blends Calendula and Myrrh into a fresh citrus base that actually prevents stinky arms and doesn't sting.

It's important to remember that these products won't completely stop you from perspiring. After all, sweating is your body's natural way to release unwanted toxins. But they'll reduce the sweat while leaving you smelling fresh and clean.