Aluminum-free, Mineral Deodorant That Actually Works

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By J. E. Hinners, MD MPH stream…and will only cost you a few bucks at your local grocery store.

It’s the secret of Milk of Magnesia that I’m talking about!

Good Sense Milk of Magnesia Saline Laxative, Original, 12 Fluid Ounce
Good Sense Milk of Magnesia Saline Laxative, Original, 12 Fluid Ounce

Milk of Magnesia is simply a nickname given for this liquid suspension of magnesium hydroxide, a naturally occurring mineral that has also been successfully used for relieving indigestion and constipation.

Magnesium Hydroxide structure
Magnesium Hydroxide

Fitness enthusiast that I am, my body cannot go without some form of effective deodorant. Soap and water are not enough for me. I like to think that’s because my body’s accustomed to vitamins and has healthy sweating mechanisms 🙂

A big source of frustration for me for many years has been being able to find an aluminum-free deodorant that truly worked for me.

The only “deodorant” that had been effective for me was actually antiperspirant–which contains aluminum:





No matter how many “natural,” aluminum-free deodorants I had tried, however, none of them actually worked for me. Either I still smelled or it wasn’t a pleasant or feasible deodorant application experience for me to keep up with on a regular basis.

Here are just a handful of the aluminum-free deodorants I had tried that did NOT work for me:








To be fair, I did try one called Pit Putty that did seem to cut down on odor better than the other natural products I had tried. However, it quickly dried into messy, white clunks that were just too much of a pain to deal with, as the clunks would spill on the ground, fall off my armpits, or leave too much white residue on my clothing.

I stopped using it, and I actually ended up either spraying my underarms with scented alcohol body spray (which was nowhere near as effective) on days where I wasn’t going to be around a lot of people–or else I would actually revert back to using the effective antiperspirants that I already knew were harmful for me on days where flawless body odor was critical.

I wasn’t happy about my solution, however. I wanted an everyday deodorant that was effective without the aluminum.

What are the dangers of aluminum in your antiperspirant?

There are some mixed results on this topic, with the main questionable disease links being breast disease and Alzheimer’s, as there is a link between Alzheimer’s and aluminum deposits in the brain.

The “don’t worry about it” camp:

  1. One 2008 literature review claims that evidence does not sufficiently indicate that antiperspirant use is linked with breast cancer (keep in mind that for a deodorant to be called “antiperspirant,” it must contain aluminum).
  2. One 2001 study says that aluminum absorption from antiperspirant use is only 2.5% the aluminum absorption in the gut from eating certain foods over the same time period.
  3. One 2012 study offers reassurance that topical application of aluminum-containing antiperspirants to in-tact skin does not pose significant risk.
  4. The American Cancer Society pretty much laughs at whoever started the “myth” that applying antiperspirants immediately after shaving poses increased risk of aluminum absorption due to nicks in the skin from shaving.

The “proceed with caution” camp:

  1. The same 2012 study cited above qualifies their findings by stating that the application of aluminum-containing antiperspirants to “stripped skin” poses high transdermal aluminum uptake and should “compel antiperspirant manufacturers to proceed with the utmost caution.” The American Cancer Society may laugh, but applying antiperspirant soon after shaving could qualify as applying antiperspirant to “stripped skin,” especially if there are any residual shaving nicks.
  2. One 2013 review of aluminum and breast cancer states that the presence of aluminum in breast tissue can alter the breast’s microenvironment, triggering inflammatory responses, alterations to cell motility, cellular component oxidative damage, and iron metabolism disruption.
  3. A 2011 study found raised aluminum levels in nipple aspirate fluids and increased levels of iron homeostasis modulating proteins among breast cancer patients.
  4. Another 2013 study states that aluminum “induces proliferation stress” in human breast tissue, similar to that which is induced by cancer genes.
  5. Higher than normal aluminum concentrations have even been found in breast cyst fluid among women with cystic breast disease.

There is really not a whole lot of evidence for or against a demonstrated link between antiperspirant use and Alzheimer’s, but for me, personally, I really can’t see what good can come out of applying a heavy metal to the skin.

That brings me back to Milk of Magnesia…

I actually first learned of using Milk of Magnesia through one of my brothers about a year ago. After a bit of investigation, I decided to give it a try.

I just bought the generic Milk of Magnesia at my grocery store (a bottle probably no more than $3), but it can also be found at pharmacies and online. Look for the plain kind that only contain 100% magnesium hydroxide. A good article comparison that lists which brands do so can be found here.

How to apply it

I have read of some people simply directly pouring the solution onto their hands and applying to their underarms, however, I prefer to apply by pouring it into a smaller, mini spray bottle and then spraying it onto my underarms after shaking the bottle.

It may be a tad drippy after applying, but all you need to do is let it dry for a short bit, perhaps even using a tissue to blot the excess liquid.

If you apply a lot at once and if it gets on your arm rather than your underarm, you may see a faded white cloud where it dried. Usually I don’t experience this white mark, but if I do, I just wipe it off with water. I have never experienced it staining my clothes.

Give it a little time to work

It may take a little time for your body to adjust and perhaps to get rid of some stored up toxins if you have been using antiperspirant, but it is worth giving it a chance to see if it works for you.

I know that each person’s body chemistry is a little different, but I cannot believe how well Milk of Magnesia works for me. It doesn’t just half-work for me, it actually truly works. I do not smell my own body odor like I can when I either use other natural products or go without any deodorant at all.

I can safely say that I feel as confident relying on Milk of Magnesia as I used to rely on antiperspirant for effectiveness in keeping body odor at bay. In fact, I do not think I have had to use antiperspirant one single time as a sure backup since using Milk of Magnesia.

The bottle lasts forever, too–I still have not finished going through my original bottle I bought after a year of use.

 So if you’re looking for an aluminum-free deodorant that really works, I recommend checking out Milk of Magnesia!