Updated: Apr 22
However, for some people certain natural deodorants can irritate the skin and cause a red rash—the culprit ingredient?
Sodium bicarbonate, otherwise known as baking soda.
Most natural deodorants rely on baking soda to absorb moisture and kill odour-causing bacteria, however, because it is an alkaline substance (PH level around 8) very frequent use can throw out the PH balance of your skin which is slightly acidic (PH level around 5.5), causing the skin to become dry and irritated.
This is why the directions for many natural deodorant pastes, including the Axilla Deodorant Paste, advise that you only need to use a pea-sized amount for each armpit and avoid applying it straight after shaving.
If you’ve found your skin reacts to natural deodorants containing baking soda, I’ve got a recipe for a DIY natural deodorant that is baking soda-free and will keep your pits happy and fresh as a daisy!
One of my good friends often makes her own natural deodorant and she inspired me to do the same. After researching recipes on the internet I was surprised to see that many of them are almost 1/3 baking soda! Even the toughest of skin would be lucky to get away without a rash from these!
Other recipes substitute the baking soda with either food-grade diatomaceous earth or clay powder, both of which are rich in minerals, detoxifying, absorbent and great for your skin, so I decided to use both in my recipe!
Here’s it is:
Natural deodorant (no baking soda)
4 tb organic, unrefined coconut oil
1 tb organic, unrefined shea butter
3 tb arrowroot powder
3 tb food-grade diatomaceous earth powder (I get mine here)
2 tb green clay powder (montmorillonite or bentonite)
15 drops of your favourite essential oils
Melt coconut oil and shea butter in a saucepan over a low heat
Add powders and stir well until thoroughly combined
Add essential oils
Pour into an empty pot or an old, cleaned-out deodorant stick (I used my old Axilla Deodorant pot) and let cool.
My batch of deodorant is very solid at the moment since it’s winter but it melts instantly on contact with skin. Even though the colour is quite dark due to the clay powder, it doesn’t leave any green marks whatsoever. You could even experiment with different types and colours of clay powder!
I’m not going to lie—this natural deodorant isn’t quite as effective as one that uses baking soda (it’s still pretty damn good, though) so you may need to reapply during the day. If your skin isn’t too sensitive you can increase the odour-protection by including a little bit of baking soda. Try adding a teaspoon at a time (you can melt it back down in a saucepan as many times as necessary) and increase the amount of baking soda until you reach a level that suits you.
Have you made your own natural deodorant before? What ingredients work the best for you?