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Antiperspirant vs Deodorant

Antiperspirant Vs Deodorant

Key Highlight

(Learn the basic key differences between the two)

Antiperspirant functions in a way that blocks your sweat glands and reduces the amount you perspiration when you sweat. Go for them if you sweat excessively and especially want to reduce sweating in the underarms.

Deodorant is designed to mask the odour that develops as a result of sweating. Go for them if you don’t sweat as much and are only looking for a quick solution to smelling better and limiting the odour.

What Are Antiperspirants, And How Do They Work? 

Antiperspirants are specialised formulations that are designed to control the amount of sweat that you experience after doing some physical activity or due to exposure to hot and humid environments.

They are formulated with aluminium chloride and other aluminium compounds. But before anything more on this, do you know what’s the logic and mechanism of sweating?

When you do a physical activity or are present in a hot and humid environment, your body heats up.

Too much of this heat would cause your internal organs to malfunction, so as a defence mechanism your body pushes out water in the form of sweat in order to and to cool it down through evaporation. This process is called perspiration. 

But interestingly, the sweat doesn’t have any smell of its own. It turns into a nasty smell only when the bacteria sitting on our skin comes in contact with it, and stays in contact for a long time.

That’s why your arms don’t smell bad, but your armpits do. Because the sweat quickly evaporates from your arms but stays pressed between the skin in your armpits and gets that extra time needed for the bacteria.

Hence, you need an anti-perspirant to control the sweating in those areas. 

Application tip: Apply antiperspirant before going to bed to block excessive sweating while you sleep.

What Are Deodorants For Men, And How Do They Work?

Deodorants, on the other hand, do not stop the sweating. They are designed to control or in simple terms mask the odour when you sweat.

We’ve already explained above how sweat doesn’t have an odour of its own, it’s just the bacteria acting up, causing the bad smell to knock on the door.

So, when you spray or rub a deodorant, it literally de-odour-ises your body, masking the foul smell behind and mask it with a pleasant one.

Most deodorants are alcohol-based, and they create a more acidic environment on your skin, which in turn decreases the odour. Many of them contain olfactive notes similar to a standard perfume and add fragrance.

But due to their diluted composition, they stays for a lesser duration than a perfume and need to be reapplied after regular intervals.

Application Tip: Apply the deodorant in the morning after shower on clean, dry skin. A good deodorant should last an entire day.

Which One Should You Choose?

Both deodorants and antiperspirants have very singularly distinctive functions. So, go for antiperspirants if you have a problem of excessive sweating.

But if you’re only looking for odour management and just want to feel & smell fresh all day long, get a deodorant.

While both of them are considered to be fairly safe, antiperspirants can come with certain health risks for people with kidney issues.

Since antiperspirants block the sweat glands, people with a kidney function of less than 30% may have difficulty clearing the aluminium in antiperspirants out of their bodies efficiently. 

Are There Any Risks Involved

It's not the product, it's the ingredients. 

The best way out is to read the labels and understand if you might be allergic to anything mentioned there. 

Sharing with you some of the possible risks below:

Skin Irritation: If you have sensitive skin, there is a high chance that your skin might not like either of them. The possible visible effects are redness, itching, or a rash when using deodorants or antiperspirants. Do a patch test before us and if you experience anything like this, stop right there and don’t continue with them. For people with normal skin they’re fairly safe.

Allergic Reactions: Many deodorants for men and antiperspirants have added fragrances in them along with preservatives, and other chemicals, all of which pose a risk of allergic reactions. You can easily find fragrance-free options if you already have a skin condition.

Aluminium Content from Antiperspirants: There has been some concern about the potential long-term health effects of aluminium content, which includes breast cancer and Alzheimer's disease. However, the data to support this is very limited and there is no evidence to back the relationship between aluminium in antiperspirants and these health conditions.

Staining: Antiperspirants pose a higher chance of stains on your clothes due to the presence of aluminium content. Apply them judiciously, so that you don’t have to worry about getting the stains off. 

Compensatory Sweating from Antiperspirants: Since antiperspirants function by temporarily clogging the sweat glands, the aftermath of this may be increased sweating in other parts of the body. 

Disruption of the Skin Microbiome: Both deodorants and antiperspirants can disrupt the natural order of bacteria on your skin. This disruption may have big implications for the health of your skin and your overall skin odour control situation.

Deo vs Antiperspirants


When walking through the deodorant vs. antiperspirant debate, it's essential to tailor your choice to your specific needs and body type. While both products are considered safe, it's important to be mindful of potential risks such as skin irritation and allergies. Additionally, when you transition from antiperspirants to Deodorants for Men, you might experience temporary increase in sweating, which will get to the normal state in a few days. So the tip here is to be well-informed about these products and consider how your skin might react to them, so you can make the right choice for your hygiene.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Are there any natural or aluminium-free alternatives to antiperspirants?

A. Technically, there is nothing called a natural antiperspirant. But some say arrowroot powder and baking soda have a similar effect as an antiperspirant. However, we have not tried this and can’t recommend it to people looking for alternatives. Having said that, there are antiperspirants that come without aluminium compounds that you can check out. 

Q. What is Antiperspirant Withdrawal?

A. Antiperspirant withdrawal is an excessive sweating condition when you switch from antiperspirants to deodorants. This situation is temporary, and it usually lasts from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the body that adjusts to the new shift.
Q. Can I use deodorant and antiperspirant together?

A. Yes, you can find many products in the market that are a combination of deodorant and antiperspirants. They help you fight two problems with one product. They provide both odour control and sweat reduction. It's like getting the best of both worlds and that too with just one product. 

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