The Challenge of Healthy Deodorant

I don’t think I could count how many different healthy deodorants I have tried. You know it doesn’t work when your husband says, “Are you trying a new deodorant? If so, it’s not working.” Yikes. I really don’t want to be that person that smells, but I also don’t want to be that person putting toxins on my body. I’ve tried brand after brand that scores well on the EWG Cosmetic Database, but almost all of them haven’t worked for me.

Most deodorants you find on the shelf at your grocery store are full of cancer causing aluminum. Something, I’m assuming, we’d all like to avoid. That leaves two other options… find a natural and safe brand that actually works for you or make it yourself. I do both.

My Deodorant Routine

I have one brand of natural deodorant that I’ve found works really well for me. It’s Tom’s Naturally Dry Antiperspirant Deodorant. You’ll notice in the photos, it is the “Natural Powder” fragrance. That was an accident on my part. The unscented scores a 1 on EWG’s website whereas the Natural Powder scent scores a 3 due to the fragrance in it. I grabbed it without double checking. The unscented works fine for me so I plan on always purchasing that one in the future.

I would love to only use homemade deodorant, but most of the recipes (that work) call for baking soda. After about a month, the baking soda starts to irritate my underarms. The solution I’ve come up with is one month of homemade deodorant followed by one month of store bought. I have read recently that if you wipe diluted apple cider vinegar on your underarms about 30 minutes before applying deodorant, then it helps offset the alkaline baking soda effects. My problem is I’m afraid I’ll forget to come back 30 minutes later to apply the homemade deodorant. But it might be worth a try!

Simple Deodorant Recipe

I love this recipe. It is simple, and I always have the ingredients on hand. I don’t know where I found it, but if you google “homemade deodorant recipe” you will find almost all the recipes are similar to this one.

1/4 cup cornstarch or arrowroot powder

1/4 cup baking soda

coconut oil

8-12 drops essential oil of choice

Mix the cornstarch (or arrowroot) with baking soda in a bowl. Add in 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil at a time. You will keep adding coconut oil in until you get a thick paste. The less coconut oil, the better, but you also don’t want it crumbly. You’ll see in photo 2 below, the mixture is still too dry. I added more coconut oil and resorted to mixing it with my fingers. The end result is a nice thick paste. Lastly, mix in your essential oil of choice (optional) and put into a storage container.

Remember, there are lots of different recipes out there. This is another great one from Riddlelove. Try a few and figure out which one works best for you!


Here are some tips I’ve picked up along the way for using natural deodorant. Put a dab on your finger and rub it gently into your underarm. Give it a few minutes to dry before putting on a shirt. This gives the coconut oil time to dry and not get on your clothing. In summer months, I’ve noticed my deodorant tends to separate, because the coconut oil liquifies in the warmer temperatures. If this happens, just keep it in the fridge for the warmest months of the year. I’ve also never had homemade deodorant go bad. I’m sure it could, but my guess is that it would take well over a year. For the most part, you don’t need to worry about a shelf life. Just make a batch and enjoy!

One Response to “A Simple Recipe for Making Deodorant”

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this!! I was educated about store bought deodorant a few years ago, but had no idea or true motive to do anything. This year my daughter has started needing to use deodorant, so I’ve been searching for solutions.

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