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What is the deal with whole body deodorant?

Why is whole body deodorant a thing?
Why is whole body deodorant a thing? 03:03

MINNEAPOLIS — You've probably seen all of the commercials lately for the latest personal hygiene trend: Whole body deodorant. So, what is it? And do we actually need it? Good Question.

Since the start of 2024 alone, major companies like Secret, Dove, Old Spice and Native have all launched whole body deodorant products, promising fresh pits, privates, feet and more.

Dr. Jamie Davis is the medical director and CEO of Uptown Dermatology.

"How can a company expand their market? Well, you start making people self-conscious about things that may or may not exist," David said.

Most of these products are deodorants, not antiperspirants, meaning they don't stop sweat — they mask odor.

"The nice thing about these full body deodorants is that they, because of the lack of aluminum salts which can be irritating, they tend to be to more gentle," Davis said.

When asked if we actually need to use full-body deodorant, Davis said it depends on the individual.

"I think that's pretty pervasive in cosmetic product marketing. Are you feeling bad about yourself? Maybe it's your body odor," David said. "It's a little shame game and I don't love that part about it."

Davis says while it may be a new flashy tool in the odor-eliminating toolbox, it's not the only one.

"Soap is the original body deodorant, really," Davis said. "What I want people to remember though is, don't confuse or overwhelm or clutter yourself with all these products that are being marketed to you if you really don't have an understanding of them and a need for them."

Whole body deodorant costs a little more than the regular at around $10. Lume launched what's said to be the first kind over five years ago.

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