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*Picture shown above belong to me*
Since I was a teenager, Ive always struggled with smelly armpits with the five oclock shadow. Ive used every deodorant the drugstores had to offer. I finally came across Degree Clinical Strength. This deodorant worked wonders for me!! It got rid of the smell and it kept me dry. However, at almost $8 per stick, I was kind of hesitant about continuing to use this product. I also noticed that my armpits were getting DARKER, and my pores were always clogged. I did more research, and although it is not proven, the supposed link between deodorant and breast cancer is rumored. Another point that drove me away from deodorant is this: Armpit sweat glands are there to EXCRETE your sweat. The use of deodorant plugs your glands, preventing the sweat from exiting your bodykinda defeats the whole purpose of your body getting rid of the waste, right?
I was thinking one day (back in 2010), there has got to be a more natural way of fighting B.O. naturally without compromising my skin or my health. I was totally determined to find a solution, especially with summer approaching.
I asked my mom for some advice. I remember her telling me that when she was younger, she too had dark armpits. Now as an adult, she has odorless snow white pits and she never uses deodorant!! She explained to me that she followed an old Philippine remedy. First, exfoliate your pits everyday in the shower with a washcloth. Second, take a calimansi (Philippine hybrid of a lemon and lime) halve and rub on your pits and air dry. Ummm, ouch?? I did try this for one week, and I was hurting. My pits stung like a mother!!!
I went through a phase where I used baking soda, but it got to a point where I had to re-apply every so often, which was quite inconvenient. I remember going to Sea World one time with a ziplock full of baking soda, and as I was in line going through security check, I realized I would have to 86 the goods. Didnt want to suggest that I was a crack head.
I finally went to my mom and asked for more solutions, and she advised me to use tawas or alum. From what I understand, alum is a salt compound. It comes in powder or solid rock form. I bought my alum from a local Filipino market. Im pretty sure theyre available in drugstores too, but in different packaging.
All you do is make sure your pits are clean and slightly damp. Take your rock (or as my fiance calls it, kryptonite..LOL), and rub gently against your pits. Then let it air dry. Be cautious though, the first time you use it, the rock may feel rough but it will smooth out after a couple of uses.
If using the powder form, dampen a few fingers, dip it into the powder, and rub against your damp pits.
Theres no fragrance to the alum, so you wont have any smell. No smell is better than having any smell, right?
In addition to using the alum rock, I continued to exfoliate and tweeze/epilate my pits. I believe that this combination helped smoothen and LIGHTEN my skin. My pits are still slightly pigmented, but its still a significant change from when I was using deodorant. I also noticed that my pores no longer get clogged and my hair grows out finely.
Did I mention that a bag of alum rocks are less than $2? Each rock can last you up to 9-10 months.