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Friday, August 26, 2011

Homemade Deodorant

I'm excited about the number of people that have told me they're going to try the no 'poo method from Wednesday! Let me know how it turn out for you and if you have any tips or questions from your experience.

It's also been fun getting tips from readers about other ways to clean using baking soda and vinegar! I think I'll do a post of those tips next week!

When I was an adolescent, I used a popular brand of commercial antiperspirant and deodorant, and I sweated like crazy! I blamed it on being a teenager and just reapplied often. But the problem kept getting worse. I don't know what me decide to switch to deodorant only (deodorant controls odor only, whereas antiperspirant also prevents perspiration), but within weeks, my excessive sweating was no longer a problem! That seems counterintuitive, but my guess is that my sweat glands were overreacting to being plugged and trying to get rid of  that stuff. Hmm, looks like my armpits knew something I didn't.

It turns out that antiperspirant use has been linked to cancer and alzheimer's. Also, our bodies need to sweat to get rid of toxins.

So, of course we want to go with the most natural route possible when putting things on or in our bodies, without breaking the bank. However, I do not want to smell like a bus full of basketball players after a game.

A few months ago, I found this incredibly easy and effective recipe for homemade deodorant on Crunchy Betty's blog, and It has worked great for me!

She says that some people experienced some irritation at first, but that hasn't been a problem for me.

Here's what you need:
1/4 cup baking soda
1/4 cup corn starch
5 Tablespoons coconut oil

Here's what you do:
Mix all ingredient well, and put into a small container with a lid.

It takes maybe 10 minutes if you include getting everything out and cleaning up afterwards. I've been using the last batch I made for about three months, and I've only used about 1/4 of it, so it lasts a really long time.

It's important that you use coconut oil because it has antibacterial properties, and is semi-solid at room temperature.

Depending on the temperature in your house, the texture of your deodorant will be semi-smushy (warmer) or hard (colder). If you keep it cool enough in your house or put it in the fridge, it would probably become the texture of grocery store deodorant. I just keep mine in the bathroom and apply it with my fingers. I rub any leftover into my hands.

This stuff works all day long for me, without me having to reapply. That's saying something in this South Louisiana summer weather!

Questions? Comments? Stinky armpit stories?


  1. I'm definitely going to try this one. I inherited my dad's sweat glands(which is not good.) I've hated using antiperspirants b/c of the aluminum being linked to alzheimers, but I have having sweat spots too. Can't wait to try it!

  2. I have been using this for years and it is the best! If is is irritating, just cut back on the baking soda. I tried the no poo method for awhile and it didn't work good at all. My hair felt just too gross!

  3. Hmm, I guess it doesn't work for everyone, Lori! What did you end up using, if you don't mind me asking. Thanks for the tip on the deodorant!

  4. I've been using a similar recipe for homemade deodorant for almost a year, and I LOVE IT! I'll NEVER go back to store-bought deodorant. It really isn't for everyone, because it isn't an antiperspirant. I still sweat, but I don't stink - ever! I added some tea tree oil for a little more funk control, and cut back on the baking soda because it was causing a bit of a rash, but otherwise, it is the same recipe.
    It takes a while to get used to it, and figure it out. First, it will take your body a few days or weeks to realize that you aren't suffocating it any more, and your pits can finally sweat and breathe normally - and it will take a little while for your pit flora to settle down. Then, it will take a little while to figure out just how much you need. At first, I was using too much, and leaving coconut oil stains on my shirts! I've learned to apply just a little bit, rub it in well with my fingers, and then allow a couple of minutes to absorb the oil before putting a shirt on.
    Since coconut oil melts at 76 degrees, it can be a challenge to travel with. I have a little lidded plastic tub that works great for travel. It can melt and won't leak out. To apply, I just scoop a tiny bit out with my fingers and rub it in well.
    Sometimes I get nervous about sweat spots, but so far I haven't had a problem. It gets moist up there, but doesn't seem to get bad enough to soak my clothes. If I'm feeling particularly nervous, sometimes I sneak away to the restroom and dab with toilet paper. but, most importantly, I don't stink. I've been out doing hours of yard work in the hot sun ... nothing. P90X workouts? fresh as ever! Vacationing in Mexico and Florida? not a problem! Jogging in the cold, with lots of layers? stink free! Sometimes I make my husband do a sniff test, and he's always impressed with the lack of stink. I make him get his nose right up in there, too. ;)
    Anyway, I HIGHLY recommend this!

    BTW - no-poo didn't work out for me either. I gave it a committed 9 months.

  5. Yeah, I love the stuff! I use it simply because it works so well, and it's a great bonus that it's cheap and safe, too!