3 Types of Natural Deodorants

Natural deodorants are better for you and for the environment. Find out what your options are.

| May 2013

Learn how to generate less trash and live a healthier and more sustainable life in The Zero-Waste Lifestyle (Ten Speed Press, 2012). Author Amy Korst offers hundreds of ideas for throwing away less in all aspects of your life. In this excerpt taken from chapter seven, “The Zero-Waste Bathroom,” learn what options there are for natural deodorants.

You can purchase this book from the Mother Earth Living store: The Zero-Waste Lifestyle.

Deodorant, like toothpaste, lasts for so long that it doesn’t create a ton of waste. On the other hand, a bottle of roll-on or stick of solid deodorant every three months, or four a year, adds up over a lifetime. Most plastic deodorant containers are made from several different types of plastic. Because recycling facilities cannot take the time to separate plastic A from plastic B, deodorant containers are not generally recyclable. (Even if the two types of plastic were separated, the type of plastic isn’t always identified, so recycling plants couldn’t know how to sort the materials anyway.)

The Speed Stick deodorant website addresses the issue of recyclability: “All of our antiperspirants and deodorants are packaged in polypropylene, polystyrene, or PET packaging. Since they are made of mixed materials, they are not recyclable. Currently it is necessary to use these mixed plastics since the container is exposed to extreme temperatures during the manufacturing process.” The Tom’s of Maine company does manufacture a deodorant with a case made entirely from number 5 plastic, though you need to either live in a community that accepts this plastic for recycling (most don’t) or mail the container back to the Tom’s company for recycling.

Aerosol containers, if completely empty, are often recyclable wherever you take scrap metal (but call to check, and remove plastic parts first).

3/25/2014 7:17:02 AM

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