Consumer News

CATrends: ‘Anti Stain’ and ‘Anti Mark’ Antiperspirants

Class-action lawsuits allege antiperspirants' marketing claims don't stick.

Consumer News

CATrends: ‘Anti Stain’ and ‘Anti Mark’ Antiperspirants

This article highlights a trend in class-action litigation as identified by our Class-Action Tracker. Thus the name of this feature, CATrends.

A recent trend in class-action litigation alleges that certain aluminum-containing antiperspirants marketed as “anti stain” and/or “anti mark” miss the mark. That’s because, despite claims to the contrary, the brands named in the lawsuits leave yellow stains and/or white marks on clothing, according to plaintiffs.

The reason why, the suits say, is a version of the active ingredient that all of the antiperspirants share: aluminum (which, by the way, is the same ingredient that temporarily clogs pores and keeps sweat from escaping, according to some experts).

It has long been recognized, and is well-accepted, that “yellow stains” and “white marks” on clothing is caused, at least indirectly, by aluminum in antiperspirants (as to yellow stains, they are caused generally upon aluminum being mixed with a user’s perspiration).

So states one of several lawsuits against Unilever, whose Degree, Dove and Axe antiperspirant brands are currently entangled in class-action litigation. Colgate-Palmolive’s Speed Stick rounds out the list.

The complaint against Colgate-Palmolive asserts that Speed Stick Stain Guard is “nothing more than a slightly diluted version of regular Speed Stick-branded antiperspirant containing essentially the same ingredients with nothing added to fight white marks or yellow staining.”

Meanwhile, the lawsuit targeting “anti mark” claims for Dove Invisible Dry Spray, which include the on-the-bottle claim that it prevents “white marks on 100 colors,” alleges that the product “actually causes the very problem that it claims to solve.”

All of the lawsuits were filed in Missouri state court in July and transferred to federal court this month. reached out to Unilever and Colgate-Palmolive for comment. Check back for updates.

Find more of our coverage on antiperspirants here.

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