Six Dangerous Products Men Use Daily—And What To Use Instead

Ladies (and gents), you asked and we answered. We’ve gotten a lot of emails from women wanting to help switch their men to cleaner products.

So in this week’s GOOD post, Siobhan has not only broken down what’s in these potions—she’s offering up actual product recommendations. Lucky dogs.

Here’s a preview:

Gentlemen, listen up. Whether you think you do or not, most of you use an average of six personal care products a day, which sounds like a lot until you get out your fingers and count: Deodorant, shampoo, cologne, and shaving cream all count—and so does the moisturizer you steal from your girlfriend. With each of these products containing anywhere from 10 to 40 unique ingredients, it’s worth your while to think about what it is you’re actually using every day, and whether those products are even doing your looks any favors—especially when some of it is so toxic it’s getting fines for air pollution in the state of California.

When, in February, Axe Body Spray’s parent company was fined $1.3 million for air pollution, it sounded like an Onionesque joke. Except that it wasn’t, because in California, progressive environmental laws limit the amount of certain chemicals used in consumer products. According to the California Air Resources Board, the fragrance was in violation of the volatile organic compound limits for aerosol deodorant.

So here’s a primer on the stuff in your everyday products, plus what brands and products to buy instead. If you don’t want to do it for the planet, or yourself, do it for your sperm. (Click through for an explanation.)

Product SLIDESHOW here.

8 Responses to “Six Dangerous Products Men Use Daily—And What To Use Instead”
  1. Leslie says:

    Not all aluminum compounds are dangerous–the Soapwalla deodorant contains one in the form of aluminum silicate (aka, kaolin). Worth noting that there’s a wide range of toxicity.

    Interestingly, kaolin is often contaminated with radioactive particles (albeit in amounts too tiny to be of concern)!

  2. Siobhan and Alexandra: thanks so much for including Soapwalla’s deodorant cream in your story!

    Leslie: Thank you for your concern re: kaolin clay. I source my kaolin clay from Mountain Rose Herbs, which is known for its impeccable standards in procuring and handling only the highest quality and onrgaically grown ingredients.

    I specifically use kaolin clay in my deodorant cream because it does not dry out skin, yet its high levels of calcium, silica, zinc and magnesium, are beneficial for oily skin and work to heal existing blemishes and inflammations, while preventing new ones from forming.

    To read more about kaolin clay, including its health benefits, please go to:

    Please feel free to email me if you have additional questions or concerns.

    Rachel Winard, Soapwalla Chef

  3. Leslie says:

    Hi Rachel,

    Thanks for your response–really nice to see a cosmetics maker who is so engaged. Don’t take my comment about the radioactivity as a criticism, as any contaminants (which occur naturally and not as the result of processing) in kaolin are exceedingly small and therefore highly unlikely to exceed the risks of even the background radiation we’re exposed to everyday.

    I am curious about the information in the link you posted, which gives the chemical breakdown of kaolin as:

    Typical Mineral Content
    Total Kaolinite- 97%
    Silicon Oxide- 46%
    Aluminum Oxide- 37%
    Iron Oxide- 0.79%
    Titanium Oxide- 0.37%

    Now, first of all, that doesn’t all add up to 100%, which makes me wonder if some of those numbers are missing decimal points. I’m guessing that the silicon, aluminum, iron, and titanium oxides are listed as the constituents of the kaolinite, but even still the numbers don’t add up. Although kaolin itself is pretty harmless (especially topically), I do wonder if other components have been left out of this list. Any insight?

    Thanks again for your response, and it looks like you have put a great deal of work into developing healthy products.

  4. Leslie,
    I noticed the ingredient totals as well, and emailed Mountain Rose Herbs about the discrepancy. I imagine, as you, that the silicon, aluminum, iron, and titanium oxides are fractions of a percentage, and that the remaing 1+% is a material not listed, but I am checking for confirmation. I will let you know once I hear from the producer.
    Thanks again,
    Rachel Winard, Soapwalla Chef

  5. Hi Leslie,
    Mountain Rose Herbs is contacting the direct supplier to see about finding out the exact percentage of each mineral. I will let you know what they find as soon as they are able to contact me.
    Thanks for being patient!
    Rachel, Soapwalla Chef

  6. Leslie says:

    Thanks for checking, Rachel! I really appreciate your following up on this.

  7. Jen says:

    thank you so much for sharing!! I’ve converted all my stuff over, and now I can do the same for him!

  8. Karen says:

    This is really interesting because if kaolin contains 37% aluminum oxide and it is being used in a natural deodorant, how is this any less dangerous than the aluminun that is found in most deodorants?

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