Why It Might Be Time To Switch To A Natural Deodorant
Sleek, sustainable and smelling like a luxury fragrance - what's not to like?
It's not hard to remember a time when 'green' products were considered a load of hippie nonsense. Especially when it came to natural deodorants. Dodgy textures, weak scents and odd applicators; the grooming equivalent of rubbing a crystal under your arms to ward off bad smells. Fortunately, the industry has moved on since then, and the category is now home to a host of skin and planet-friendly brands giving even the strongest sweat deflectors a run for their money. Among them, Akt – a new-to-BEAST. brand founded by West End performers Ed Currie and Andy Coxon. With first-hand experience of perpetual perspiration – spending eight shows a week under hot lights – the pair decided to reinvent the category with natural deodorants that are sleek, sustainable and smell like a luxury fragrance. "For too long, guys have put up with ineffective antiperspirants that don't really last '72 hours', stain our shirts and smell like teenage boys. We deserve something better," says Coxon. We're inclined to agree. So if you're ready to make the switch, get your mitts (and your pits) on one of these.
Natural Deodorants For Men: What You Need To Know
What Is Natural Deodorant?
Natural deodorant is any deodorant that does not contain synthetic ingredients, such as parabens, aluminium or perfume. In general, all deodorants and antiperspirants are safe to use (especially those we test drive here at BEAST.) However, those with sensitive skin or allergies can find that they disrupt the skin and sweat glands once absorbed into the body. "Despite what people think, natural deodorants aren't like petroleum jelly - they're not slimy or sticky, and they certainly don't create a film over the skin," says Coxon.
How Does Natural Deodorant Work?
Instead of plugging the sweat glands with aluminium salts or neutralising smells with alcohol, natural deodorants use essential oils and extracts including eucalyptus and tea tree to absorb sweat, leave behind a light scent and also nourish the skin. They come in a range of formats including roll-ons, aerosol-free sprays and balms.
Does Natural Deodorant Expire?
Like all grooming products, natural deodorants have an expiration date. Free from unnatural chemicals, this is usually between two and six months from the first use, which, given that daily application is advised, should be plenty of time. If you're worried about the impact of packaging on the environment, opt for tubes and applicators made from recyclable materials such as aluminium or sugar cane.
Does Natural Deodorant Clog Pores?
Natural deodorants use biocompatible ingredients that are easily absorbed into the skin and metabolised by the body, meaning there's no risk of clogged pores. Which is good news, seeing as sweat is the body's natural temperature control mechanism, and also helps remove toxins. "Using a deodorant with aluminium chlorohydrate in is like taking a pill to stop you peeing. No one would do that," says Coxon.
Three Of The Best Natural Deodorants From Akt
SC.01 Ext. Orange Grove
With notes of neroli, petitgrain and mandarin, the aptly named SC.01 Orange Grove scent is so refreshingly sweet, you could easily mistake a stuffy commute for an afternoon sunbathing in Sicily. Like all Akt deodorants, the moisturising formula can be used anywhere you need effective protection, including your feet, chest and even your forehead, so it's ideal for throwing in your gym bag, allowing you to skip the fragrance and save on space.
SC.02 Ext. After Thunder
Stronger in sensibility, SC.02 After Thunder is woody and dark - a crisp, dry scent with green accords. As well as giving the deodorant a uniquely fresh and invigorating kick, the addition of eucalyptus also works to simultaneously stave off bacteria and banish bad odour. Consider this one an essential for men who like to go from desk to dance floor without changing. Or even desk to departure lounge, seeing as Akt's deodorants are all sized to fly.
SC.03 Ext. The Onsen
For the moody, broody, frighteningly pensive thinker (or just those who don't want their deodorant to smell like, well, deodorant), make SC. 03 The Onsen your eau of choice. Inspired by Japanese hot springs, the scent is almost a cologne in nature, with deep, warm notes that speak to more of an aesthete than an athlete. It feels a shame to just use it on your pits, so dab a bit on your pulse points and, thanks to a blend of active botanicals and the brand's Deo-Barrier Complex, enjoy the full effect for hours to come.