Deodorants and antiperspirants are markedly different in composition and use. Anyone who grapples body odour and sweat must learn to identify the difference to pick the right product.
The Key Difference
As the name suggests, a deodorant offers protection against body odour whereas an antiperspirant helps reduce sweat generation, and in effect, also helps fight body odour. So, a deodorant can primarily help you feel fresh and antiperspirant can help avoid wetness and sweat patches.
The composition of the two products is an easy differentiator between deodorants and antiperspirants. One underlying difference is that deodorants comprise anti-bacterial agents such as alcohol, baking soda, activated charcoal and coconut oil to fight the build-up of odour-causing bacteria and fragrances to mask the odour.
Whereas antiperspirants contain aluminium that helps in controlling sweat. Apart from aluminium and its derivatives, antiperspirants may also contain natural ingredients such as mineral salts, witch hazel, baking soda, hops, and talc, all of which contribute in enhancing the sweat control properties of this product.
Deodorants are typically meant to be used in the armpits. However, it is not uncommon for people to apply these on other body parts such as inner thighs, neck, and even underneath the breast. Since deodorants aren’t meant to be used in these areas, it can lead to irritation and itchiness. If you need to control body odour in parts other than the armpits, baby powder is a safer option.
Antiperspirants, on the other hand, can be applied to just about any area of the body with excessive sweating issues. This includes underarms, feet, hands, chest and back. When it comes to antiperspirants, it is not ‘where to use’ but ‘when to use’ that counts.
Unlike deodorants, antiperspirant needs time to kick in. This means applying a layer of antiperspirant after a shower isn’t going to work. The best practice is to apply it before going to bed at night. Decreased activity of sweat glands during sleep gives antiperspirants the perfect environment to work their magic.
Deodorants versus Antiperspirant: Which is Right for You?
The choice is simple – if you are looking to mask body odour alone, deodorants such as Engage Blush, Nike Casual and Shakira Rock for women, and Azzaro Wanted, Ulric De Varens and Scuderia Ferrari Red for men are some top-of-the-line choices.
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Those who need to keep perspiration levels under check lean in favour of antiperspirants such as Nivea Pearl And Beauty Antiperspirant, Dove Go Fresh Cucumber & Green Tea, Brut Ocean Roll on for men and Nivea Fresh Petal Deodorizer for women.
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If you struggle with both these issue, you can use deodorants as well as antiperspirants, dividing their application between day and night time.