INCI of cosmetics, you know what you are applying on skin Part 6, the aluminum salts in deodorants
Let's find out what the aluminum salts, used in most deodorants, are, how to recognize them from INCI and what effects they could have on our health.
The INCI is the label that appears, by law, on all packaging of cosmetics and indicates the ingredients used in a particular product. It is very important to learn to recognize, if not all substances, at least some particular classes that could cause irritation, dry skin, acne or even wrinkles and, as for hair, dandruff, seborrhea and oily hair. Yes, because many used substances are synthetic, derive from petroleum and are often poorly tolerated by the skin, it is therefore important to recognize them and, if possible, avoid them. Today we are talking about a substance present in most deodorant products, which we often use even every day, aluminum salts.
The aluminum salts are used as antiperspirant substances of deodorants, in fact they block sweat glands and limit bacterial proliferation and consequent bad smell. However, despite their undoubted effectiveness, aluminum salts are very controversial substances and even today there is no clarity about their possible effects. In particular, it is believed that aluminum salts are able to penetrate the body, in addition to this, according to recent studies, aluminum salts would be able to alter the nervous and endocrine systems. In particular, the possibility that aluminum salts may modify estrogen receptors in breast tissue and thus increase the risk of breast cancer has been long debated (Darbre et al, J Inorg Biochem, 2005 and also Mandriota et al, International Journal of Cancer, 2016). Other studies have instead observed that only a small amount of aluminum actually reaches the mammary gland and that the amount of aluminum that comes from food is significantly higher, in addition there are also studies that have shown no connection between use of antiperspirant deodorants and diseases such as breast cancer (Mirick et al, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 2002). The problem therefore remains open and, based on this information, it is up to the consumer to decide what to do. In the INCI aluminum salts appear under the name aluminum. It is possible to find deodorants without aluminum salts on the market, but they have a disadvantage, they don’t last long. In addition to this, even in this case, it is good to pay attention and read the INCI, in fact, to compensate for the lack of aluminum salts, often in the formula some alcohol is added that could irritate the most sensitive skin.