It was once sage advice to stay upwind of an Englishman. These days this is no longer true and there is a healthy market in anti-perspirants. Too healthy, in fact. It seems every time I need one, I have great trouble finding a stick of deodorant.

I don’t like anti-perspirant. It tends to make me break out under my arms. It makes me feel clumpy in the pits. It is invariably made with aluminium (a/k/a aluminum). With the frequency of Alzheimer’s and related conditions in my family, I have an aversion coating myself in atomic number 13.

So I found myself at the 24-hour Tesco in the wee hours scanning the selection of products. Anti-perspirant products. Doesn’t anyone else ever want just plain deodorant? It was only with the help of a shelf-stacker that I found a product suspiciously surrounded by anti-perspirants that appeared to be marketed toward women. It contains some sort of Japanese formula and is clearly labelled “No Aluminium”.

The scent of this product is not the same as Mennen or Old Spice. I was worried a bit this morning when I put it on that I might exude a bit of femininity. And I remember an old commercial that advertised “Sure” as “strong enough for a man, but pH balanced for a woman”, so would this deodorant that was shelved with the feminine range work for me? What is the pH difference between men and women?

Despite my self-consciousness, the Japanese herbs and spices seem to have worked in a subtle fashion.


7 Responses to Unscented

  1. Deb says:

    OH, this is funny! I can just imagine some of your awkward responses to “What is that smell?”

  2. Michael says:

    In case you find that your new deodorant is attracting the wrong type of crowd, we’ve been happy with an unscented “Liquid Deodorant Crystal Spray Mist” available at this link. We get it at a nearby health food store (nothing like Broad Ripple’s “The Good Earth”, but it does the trick), and it has “no harmful aluminums” (I live near the center of North America and use American spellings unapologetically & in relative safety).

  3. Philippa Alan says:

    I’m with you on this one Dave. Alzheimer’s is in the family, thus rarely use anti-perspirant. I haven’t found a deodarent that I like so I just use alcohol or nothing. No one has said anything to me, so it must be okay. I’ll have to check out the link Michael posted above.

  4. the Grit says:

    Hi Dave,

    Try Speed Stick. It’s relatively inexpensive and, according to the label, contains no AL. If it can keep me from fermenting after a lengthy bought of cutting, splitting, and stacking firewood, it should suffice for city life. It’s made by Mennen, and has it’s own web site. I’m sure you can order it via the net, if it’s not available locally.

    the Grit

  5. Dave says:

    Can’t seem to get Mennen Speed Stick at Tesco. That’s what I was using, though I can’t remember where I got it – might have been at a Sainsbury’s on the way to France. I used to use Old Spice, but you can’t get that deodorant anywhere here – other Old Spice products, but not deodorant.

    The stuff I bought with the Japanese spa minerals seems to be working so far and it doesn’t seem to be too feminine other that in the packaging.

  6. inel says:

    You are right! It is tough buying deo without the anti-p in Britain. However, Boots the Chemist have the answer: you can get Old Spice deodorant in two flavours as shown here.

    I had a similar problem Stateside last week … but I didn’t particularly want to smell like Old Spice!

  7. Dave says:

    Thanks for that! I never check in Boots – I just go to the supermarket.

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