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I just found something interesting with regard to “maximum strength” ingredients in antiperspirants.
Yes, much like my recent experiment with dry skin body lotions and body washes, I decided to research deodorants and anti-perspirants. I was eager to explore some of the newer formulations, in hopes of finding one I really liked… finally.
For the most part, I’ve been a loyal Secret Invisible Solid user (or whatever their “best” formulation was before that one came out).
However, I’ll try any new deodorant that looks promising once it hits the store shelves — hoping that it will one-up the Secret. (Secret is very good, but not great, in my opinion. Especially not for someone with Hyperhidrosis.)
Trust me, a great deodorant or antiperspirant is imperative to enjoying your day-to-day life. Take it from a girl who oh-so-obviously sweated through the armpits of her brand new business suit during a job interview one time! (But I still got the job.)
Upon closer inspection of the labels on anti-perspirants on store shelves, I found that the ones I was most interested in have very high amounts of Aluminum Zirconium (or technically, Aluminum Zirconium Trichlorohydrex Gly).
Here’s the most surprising thing… (It’s not what you’re probably thinking… no, it’s not about aluminum toxicity.)
How Strong Are Clinical Strength Deodorants?
The “regular” Secret (Invisible Solid) contained 19% of Aluminum Zirconium Trichlorohydrex Gly, whereas the “clinical strength” Secret (and other brands like Dove Clinical Protection, for that matter) contain 20% — which is the maximum amount available in an over-the-counter antiperspirant.
Yet the “regular” formulations were half the price (or more!) of the “clinical strength” formulations!
But, if you ask me, that huge price difference for relatively little difference in the active ingredient simply comes down to one thing: pure marketing.
I’m no expert, but I’m guessing there can’t be that much of a difference between the 19% “regular” Secret and the 20% “clinical strength” Secret. Not to warrant that much of a price hike, right?
Here are the amounts of Aluminum Zirconium Trichlorohydrex Gly in some popular anti-perspirants on the store shelf yesterday:
- Secret Clinical Strength – 20% (I tried it as a free trial size recently, and I didn’t notice any difference between this one and “regular” Secret)
- Secret Invisible Solid – 19% (my old standby favorite; the one I always go back to)
- Dove Invisible Solid – 18.5% (ahem, this one is NOT “invisible”, but that’s beside the point)
- Degree Invisible Solid – 17.6% (on the other hand, this one is highly “invisible”)
- Right Guard Sport Clear Gel – 8.6% (I think their products stop body odor best)
- Dove Ultimate Clear – 14.8% (an older formulation that I just happened to still have in my bathroom cabinet)
Certain Dri Antiperspirant
I can’t help it, I sweat a lot. It’s called Hyperhidrosis.
So yeah, I’ve tried almost every type of deodorant and anti-perspirant that’s ever come out — including Certain Dri.
Certain Dri is a bit different. It contains 12% Aluminum Chloride — which is the same active ingredient in prescription-strength antiperspirants. The only difference is prescription antiperspirants contain 20-25% aluminum chloride in an alcohol solution, which may cause stinging and drying of the skin.
I started using Certain Dri many many years ago when it first debuted on QVC (back when QVC used to be the first place to get “new” products). I liked it so much, I stocked up way back then. And, to this day, I still have a couple of never-opened boxes of Certain Dri. Yeah, I know. Time to toss ’em, because anti-perspirant doesn’t have that good of a shelf life.
Interesting Side Note: Two of the Dove Advanced Clear Invisible bottles I found in my cabinet today have an expiration date of 2151!!! No kidding. And the Secret Invisible Solid I purchased yesterday has an expiration date of 2050. I guess the shelf life varies with deodorants and antiperspirants. (The more Aluminum Zirconium, the shorter the shelf life?)
The fact of the matter is I’ve always liked how the Certain Dri does an amazing job of lessening how much I actually sweat. The only downside: it does nothing to stop odor. So I stopped using it.
Today, they sell an additional product specifically for odors: Certain Dri Underarm Refresher. Or, you could just use your own deodorant (or a low-dose anti-perspirant) to ward off any perspiration odor.
Certain Dri vs. Secret Antiperspirant
Certain Dri works best when you use it for several nights in a row.
It effectively closes off your pores, making sweating less likely.
From the package instructions inside the Certain Dri box:
A: A true anti-perspirant should shrink and close off underarm pores to inhibit the flow of perspiration. The more effective the formulation, the more effective and longer lasting will be the antiperspirant relief.
A: Yes. Both underarms represent an area of only about 6 to 8 square inches. Nature simply and safely redistributes the perspiration around to the other 2,700+/- square inches of the body’s skin surface.
Anyone got any thoughts on this topic?
By the way, I’ve considered the aluminum levels in anti-perspirants, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do to stay dry and fresh-smelling. So products like Tom’s of Maine deodorant are out — they’re completely ineffective on someone like me. (But… they do offer a 100% happiness guarantee or your money back, if you’d like to try it.)
Geesh… I cannot believe some of the things I talk about on this website and the deep, dark inner secrets I divulge about myself! Hopefully someone can benefit from this information.
A Word About Women Using Men’s Deodorants
Eventually, I made the switch from my all-time favorite Secret deodorant to
How Good Are “Natural” Deodorants?
After going the clinical-strength antiperspirant route for years… I finally decided that it was time to get serious about trying a bunch of the “natural” deodorant brands.
I thought that maybe my pH… or my diet… or my hormonal levels… or something else made it difficult to find a brand of deodorant that would last for more than a few months at a time.
The natural deodorant brands I’ve tried:
- Armpit Armor (stick, original scent)
- Crystal (mineral deodorant stick)
- Dove (stick, coconut & jasmine)
- Lume (stick, lavender & sage)
- Native (stick, coconut & vanilla)
- PiperWai (jar, charcoal)
- Primal Pit Paste (jar, lavender)
- Schmidt’s (jar, lavender & sage)
- Schmidt’s (stick, charcoal & magnesium and rose & vanilla)
- Secret (stick, coconut)
- Sweat Block (wipes)
- Tom’s of Maine (stick, lavender)
Seriously, I have tried them all!
It’s so frustrating when you smell great at the start of the day, and then by the end of the day… you stink!
TIP: I found that any time a “natural’ deodorant didn’t work for me, I could spray some of this Weleda rose deodorant spray under my arms and it “helped” the natural deodorants work better. I don’t especially like the scent of roses on my body, but I definitely didn’t stink as much. (And the rose scent isn’t too overpowering.)
So… after trying just about every aluminum-free deodorant on the planet, I finally discovered Each and Every deodorant. It’s a relatively new natural deodorant brand that debuted in 2017.
If you, too, have tried far too many “natural” deodorants, you might be interested in this…
Each & Every has a sampler kit — you get to pick any 4 natural deodorant scents. (I chose Cannabis & Green Tea, Coconut & Lime, Sandalwood & Black Pepper, Lavender & Lemon.)
It’s FREE shipping. And the reviews are amazing.
As for me, it’s working better than any of the other natural deodorants I’ve tried. My #1 favorite scent is the Coconut & Lime! Seriously, I smell good all day… and night… and into the next day with this natural deodorant. Trust me, that has never happened for me with any other natural deodorant brand.
Here’s a $5 off coupon if you want to try it.
I also learned a few good tips from reading their article about switching to an aluminum-free deodorant. Each & Every says it can take anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks for it to adjust to your body. (They call “detoxing your armpits”.) And I was fully prepared to stick it out that long before noticing that it’s working. But for me, it started working almost right away. No more stink for a full 24+ hours after applying! I’m so happy.
I am now using Each & Every deodorant each night after my shower. And sometimes again in the morning — if I’m going to have a busy day.
This stuff WORKS. And the scent truly lasts (…so be sure to find one you like!)
The secret to why Each & Every works, in my opinion, is the essential oils. What makes E&E different is their unique blends of essential oils to prevent odor.
They have the perfect combination to keep you smelling clean and fresh all throughout the day — without smelling like you’ve doused yourself in essential oils or sat in front of a diffuser all day! (If you’re interested… here are my all-time favorite diffusers.)
For my 10-hour 6-days-a-week work-at-home job + running errands + playing with my dogs + cleaning house… Each & Every has met my needs better than any other natural deodorant I’ve tried. I do not stink at the end of each day. Period. And I’m fine (most days) if I happen to skip applying it in the morning too!
However, on days when I’m going to sweat heavily (like when I’m working out), the Each & Every deodorant last as long as I’d like it to. (I often notice the stink creeping back in by the end of the workout.)
So now, I go the extra mile and double-up on those days. Here’s what I do:
- I start with a spray-on deodorant/antiperspirant. (I’m still searching for my favorite spray deodorant — but for now I’m really liking Dove Ultraclear Black+White Dry Spray.)
- After that’s dry, I apply a thick coverage of Each & Every Natural Deodorant over that — because I absolutely LOVE their scents! They’re fairly strong, and really long-lasting.
So far so good. I will post more updates here as time goes on.
My favorite Each & Every scents are (in this order):
- Coconut & Lime (LOVE it! So beachy and fresh.)
- Lavender & Lemon (Love it. A soft, clean scent that’s almost overpowering, but not! Very similar to a traditional Lavender essential oil scent, yet softer and cleaner.)
- Sandalwood & Black Pepper (Like it! Clean and different. I think guys would like this one too.)
- Cannabis & Green Tea (Don’t care for it much because there’s hardly any scent — which might be good for some people.)
I like to help people find clever ways to do things that will save time & money — so I write about "outside the box" Beauty Tips and Beauty Hacks that most people wouldn't think of. With beauty products (like hair care, skincare, and makeup) and personal care items (like teeth issues, body odor, undergarments, and <em>other</em> topics that very few people enjoy talking about)… I share my own honest firsthand experiences that I think others would appreciate hearing about and find helpful. Especially for topics that are usually very "private" and most people don't like to talk about publicly! When I'm not trying new beauty products and organizing all my "stuff", you'll find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites).