In this explainer video for DNews (Discovery's YouTube arm), hosts Jackie Koppell and Trace Dominguez break down the science of sweat, body odor, and deodorant. If you have any super-organic friends, they've probably lectured you about how evil deodorant is, hopefully from a safe distance. But are these unscented naysayers like Matthew McConaughey right? Well, they're right that our underarm products do more than just cover up smells: they plug up sweat glands and mess with the bacteria that feed on that sweat (making smelly byproducts). Sometimes they even help make superbacteria (maybe)!
Organic deodorants do much less of this, and it's not yet clear whether deodorants' impact on your microbiome is a big deal. We still have a lot more to study, but if you're a big believer in the current trend of keeping your body's bacteria population healthy, you might want to skip the Old Spice.