Here Are the Best Natural Deodorants & 3 Recipes to Make Your Own!

Skin Care

When trying to find a replacement for our modern antiperspirant stick, we all have the same worries. We know that natural deodorant is better for us than antiperspirants, but do they actually work? Is there an all natural deodorant for women that actually works to keep body odor at bay?

These days, the market for them is huge. Now, hundreds of people chime in all the time in reviews and on beauty sites about how natural deodorants have changed their opinions (and their lives!). And, in some cases, all-natural deodorants have people saying that they are as good as or even better than antiperspirants.

So, how do you even start with finding the right one for you? Below, you’ll learn about the differences between antiperspirants and natural deodorants so you can make smarter choices for your health and lifestyle. Also, we’ve included a handy guide to the best all natural deodorants for women you can find on the market, and why people rave about them. Moreover, if you fancy having a go at making your own homemade natural deodorant, there are 3 DIY recipes you can try at home!

What is a Natural Deodorant?

Ingredients for natural homemade deodorant in jars and a fresh aloe vera leaf on a wooden table

Deodorants are cosmetics that mask or neutralize our body odor. Specifically, they neutralize odor-causing bacteria as soon as we sweat them out, and then add a fragrance to hide any remaining odor.

Regular commercial deodorants often contain alcohol, which can dry out your skin. They also usually include fragrances and artificial colors. In addition, they may even contain other chemicals to keep it solid, to make it glide on smoothly, or as fillers.

Conversely, all-natural deodorants avoid all of those harmful chemical ingredients. So, they contain only natural ingredients, are cruelty-free, and hypoallergenic. To top it all off, they still function to keep us smelling sweet!

All-Natural Deodorant vs Aluminum Antiperspirants

Antiperspirant bottles and. deodorant sticks on large green leaves on a wooden table

Sweating is a natural human function. It helps to eliminate cholesterol, salts, and alcohol. Additionally, it lowers the risk of getting kidney stones.[1] So, imagine all the money we’d save if saunas weren’t good for us!

We have two types of sweat glands: eccrine and apocrine. Our entire body has eccrine sweat glands, except for our armpits and genital areas which have apocrine sweat glands.[2] As such, apocrine sweat glands produce a thick fluid that, once in contact with bacteria (of which there are millions in those two regions), produces body odor.[3]

There is a common misconception that deodorants stop perspiration to eliminate body odor. However, they do not. Instead, deodorants allow our sweat glands to finish their bodily function completely, so they do not provide “wetness protection”. On the other hand, antiperspirants do prevent the completed bodily function by halting our body’s natural sweat process altogether.

How Antiperspirants Work

Woman applying traditional roll on deodorant

If you don’t sweat, you won’t stink, right? Actually, antiperspirants work by preventing our sweat from leaving our bodies. In particular, the active ingredients – aluminium zirconium or aluminium chlorohydrate – in antiperspirant plug our sweat glands and cause them to constrict. Often, deodorants are combined with antiperspirants to cover our body odor.

Antiperspirants are loaded with ingredients that have been linked to diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, asthma, and more. Thus, these are five ingredients contained in antiperspirants that science has found to be very harmful to our health.

  • Aluminum zirconium or chloralhydrate – linked to breast cancer and Alzheimer’s disease[4][5][6]
  • Parabens – produces oestrogen activity in breast tissue[7] and allergic reactions[8]
  • Triclosan – disrupts thyroid gene expression[9]
  • Phthalates – plastic fragrances that cause asthma and disrupt androgen activity[10]
  • Fragrances – known to cause allergic reactions

How Natural Deodorants Work

A block of all natural deodorant on a brown knitted pouch on a wooden table

Natural deodorants work just like commercial deodorants in that they allow our bodies to complete its natural function of sweating. However, they provide a safe and natural way to do this without any chemical ingredients. All-natural deodorants for women contain only plant-based ingredients, mineral extracts, and natural essential oils for fragrance.

Therefore, finding a natural deodorant that works means looking for odor-absorbing ingredients. These ingredients help soak up sweat as it comes out of our bodies. Ingredients such as cornstarch, baking soda, arrowroot powder, or activated charcoal, are used for their natural absorptive qualities and make some of the best natural deodorants for women.

Often, they also contain an antibacterial ingredient to help destroy any present odor-causing bacteria. Thus, this eliminates the growth of more smelly bacteria in our armpits throughout the day. Interestingly, these all-natural antibacterial ingredients can be things like coconut oil, shea butter, or tea tree oil.

Lastly, natural deodorants may also contain essential oils to keep you smelling fresh and clean all day. Usually, natural deodorant brands also offer fragrance-free varieties that just as effective in neutralizing bad odors. These few ingredients make switching to them very simple, as well as good for your health.

With that, let’s take a look at some pros and cons of deodorants vs. antiperspirants.

Natural Deodorant   Antiperspirant  
Pros Cons Pros Cons
All natural Doesn’t prevent sweating Keeps you dry Toxic chemicals
Eliminates odor-causing bacteria   Eliminates odors Allergens
Allergy-free     Causes more odor-causing bacteria
Soothes the skin      
Smells good      
Absorbs odor      
Can DIY      
May last longer than other brands      

The Best Natural Deodorant for Women That Actually Work

1. Schmidt’s

Schmidt's Ylang Ylang + Calendula Natural Deodorant for Women

Image credit: Schmidt’s

Schmidt’s plant-based and mineral deodorants have really changed the game in natural botanical skin care. With innovative fragrances that we love, these deodorants really work! Schmidt’s provides a wide variety of different absorbing ingredients in each stick, and vary them with different combinations. Thus, you can try them out to see which one is the best all natural deodorant for you. Each stick costs around $9, and can last about 4-5 weeks with a once-daily application.

Why People Love it

A quick search on Schmidt’s deodorants reveals that they are loved by thousands of people. This brand is natural, vegan, and cruelty-free. Particularly, customers love their unique fragrances like rose + vanilla, cedarwood + juniper, and lavender + sage. Additionally, they offer extra-powered charcoal + magnesium sticks with a fresh citrus fragrance.

Other Notes

As with all plant extracts, some people do experience skin sensitivities. And, some users have also noted stains on their clothes.

Key Benefits

  • Absorbs wetness and odor
  • Great smelling fragrances
  • Certified vegan
  • Cruelty-free
  • Fragrance-free option

2. Bali Secrets

Bali Secrets Unscented Natural Deodorant for Women

Image credit: Bali Secrets

Bali Secrets is an organic, vegan and cruelty-free natural deodorant company hailing from California. Their formulas are innovative for being a roll-on design in a market filled with deodorant sticks. As such, you just have to shake it so the liquid wets the roller, and you can roll it straight on! Its convenience and ease of use make it a great choice for people making the switch from traditional deodorants. However, this does mean that they use a lot of water. Interestingly, the main ingredient in these sticks are a natural mineral salt (potassium alum) rather than the absorbing ingredients used by other all-natural deodorants.

Why People Love it

Bali Secrets has some of the best customer reviews of all the deodorants on our list. It is considered to be among the best natural deodorants for women, and advertises that it leaves no stains and is free of baking soda, which may cause skin irritations. So, Bali Secret is great for people with sensitive skin.

This brand keeps their ingredient list innovative with seaweed extract and aloe vera gel, though their fragrances are limited. Bali Secret costs $14 a bottle, and should last you three months.

Other Notes

Some customers repeatedly complain that the formulas dry up in just one month.[11]

The product ingredient list also contains alcohol as its antiseptic ingredient, rather than the coconut oil or shea butter that other all-natural deodorants use.

Key Benefits

  • All-natural, cruelty-free, vegan, organic
  • No baking soda that may cause irritation
  • No stains on clothing
  • Innovative ingredients
  • Fragrance-free choice that is truly fragrance-free
  • Great, personal customer service

3. Primal Pit Paste

Primal Pit Paste Coconut Lime Natural Deodorant for Women

Image credit: Primal Pit Paste

Primal Pit Paste is among the most popular natural deodorants because of its effectiveness. It comes in either a cream in a jar or in a stick. In fact, one of their primary claims, besides their effectiveness as an all-natural deodorant, is that they offer different levels of protection, from mild (for sensitive skin) to regular protection, all while softening the skin.

Why People Love it

Customer truly love their products – you’d practically have to pry them out of their cold, dead hands before they will try anything else. Some users have claimed that Primal Pit Paste is better than commercial antiperspirants. Reviewers have even said that it provides a full 24-hours of effective protection!

Pit Paste offers a wide range of wonderful fragrances including orange creamsicle, chai and many more. Also, they offer two sizes so you can try them out first. Specifically, a mini-jar costs $4 and a full-sized jar costs $11. Thus, because you use just a pea-sized amount per underarm, a full-size container lasts longer than one month. Their deodorant sticks cost $9.

Other Notes

Some users complain that it stains clothes and makes their pits red from the baking soda.[12]

Key Benefits

  • All-natural, organic, cruelty-free
  • Highly effective against body odor
  • Highly effective against wetness
  • Long-lasting
  • Great fragrances

4. NUUD

Nuud Natural Starter Pack 100% vegan deodorant

Image credit: Nuud

Nuud is a startup deodorant company with an innovative idea in the best all-natural deodorants. They list just ten ingredients with none of the typical odor-absorbing ingredients. In their words, “No aluminium, no chemicals, no artifical fragrances, no salts, no parabens, no alchohol, no crap.” Instead, they went a totally different route with microsilver, a patented format of an all-natural ingredient. Specifically, microsilver is a liquid with antibacterial properties. In particular, microsilver is pure ecocert micro silver, which prevents the growth of odor-causing bacteria and prevents smelly armpits naturally.

Nuud is totally vegan, cruelty free, and is even packaged in sustainable sugarcane tubes instead of plastic. In particular, this product is extremely concentrated so a little pea-sized amount covers the entire armpit!

Why People Love it

Though this product has only sold about 112,000 units, people have commented on its gentleness on irritatable, shaved underarms. There, the website boasts that one application will keep you odor-free for 3-7 days. Thus, each tube should last for three months.

Key Benefits

  • All-natural, cruelty-free, vegan
  • Aluminum-free
  • Fragrance-free
  • Less waste with cardboard packaging rather than plastic
  • Lasts three months
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Patented formula of ecocert microsilver to prevent odor

3 DIY Homemade Natural Deodorant Recipes to Make Your Own

A bowl of thick white mixture for natural deodorant, a stick of deodorant, vials of lavender essential oils and sprigs of dried lavender in the background

There are so many advantages to learning how to make your own beauty products. With homemade natural deodorant, you know exactly what goes in it. You can also customize its fragrance, feel, and application. Additionally, they are cheap and easy to make. And, not to mention, it’s environmentally-friendly, with minimal plastic packaging and almost zero waste. DIY homemade natural deodorants are also cruelty-free, hypo-allergenic, and all-natural. This alone makes these the best all natural deodorants for women (or men, too)!

Homemade all-natural deodorants contain three basic components:

  1. An absorbent ingredient like corn starch, arrowroot, or baking soda
  2. An antibacterial ingredient like tea tree oil, shea butter, or coconut oil
  3. Any essential oil for fragrance (optional)

Below are three of our favorite DIY all-natural deodorant recipes to try. They are filled with only natural goodness, plus they can be stored anywhere. And, since you add your own fragrance combinations, why not try some self-healing with aromatherapy essential oils for an added health boost?

Also, a great tip is that you can make any of them without baking soda, if you prefer – just replace the baking soda with potato starch or activated charcoal! Or, add another of the many absorbing ingredients available.

1. Best All-Natural DIY Deodorant for Excess Sweat

Homemade natural deodorant ingredients in jars and dishes on a wooden table with a bunch of lavender in the background

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Equipment: Medium bowl, measuring spoons, spatula, and a 4 oz. jar

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp of baking soda
  • 5 Tbsp of arrowroot powder or cornstarch
  • 5 Tbsp of shea butter
  • 1 Tbsp of coconut oil
  • 30 drops of bergamot and grapefruit essential oils for a fresh fragrance

Directions

  1. Mix the baking soda and arrowroot powder or cornstarch in a bowl.
  2. Add the shea butter and coconut oil.
  3. Stir and mix until thoroughly combined. This may take a while as it will be very powdery at first.
  4. Add the green tea and orange essential oils and mix.
  5. Put the mixture into the jar and seal.

Tips for Use

  • Use a dime-sized amount applied to each armpit.
  • Will keep for up to two months.

2. Best All-Natural DIY Deodorant for Sensitive Skin

Organic ingredients for making DIY natural deodorant on a table

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Equipment: A medium bowl, measuring spoons, a spatula, and a 4 oz. jar

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbsp of baking soda
  • 2 Tbsp of shea butter
  • 4 Tbsp of arrowroot powder, potato starch, or tapioca starch
  • 2 Tbsp of coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp of beeswax
  • 30 drops of rose and sandalwood essential oils to soothe sensitive skin

Directions

  1. Mix the baking soda, arrowroot powder, potato starch or tapioca starch in a bowl.
  2. Add the shea butter, coconut oil, and beeswax.
  3. Stir and mix until thoroughly combined.
  4. Add the green tea and rose essential oils and mix.
  5. Put the mixture into the jar and seal.

Tips for Use

  • Use a dime-sized amount applied to each armpit.
  • Will keep for up to one month.

3. Best All-Natural DIY Deodorant with Matcha Green Tea Powder

Homemade natural deodorant ingredients such as lemon, lime, lavender, baking soda, and bottles on a marble table

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Equipment: A medium bowl, measuring spoons, a spatula, and a 4 oz. jar

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp of baking soda
  • 3 Tbsp of arrowroot powder
  • 6 Tbsp of coconut oil
  • ½ Tbsp of matcha green tea powder
  • 30 drops of sandalwood and vanilla essential oils for a warm, sweet fragrance

Directions

  1. Mix the baking soda and arrowroot powder or cornstarch in a bowl.
  2. Add the shea butter and coconut oil.
  3. Stir and mix until thoroughly combined. This may take a while as it will be very powdery at first.
  4. Add the green tea essential oil and mix.
  5. Put the mixture into the jar and seal.

Tips for Use

  • Apply a dime-sized amount to each armpit in the morning.
  • Will keep for up to one month.
Best Natural Deodorants and 3 DIY Recipes

Conclusion

All-natural deodorants have come a long way since they first burst on the market. While before, many formulas were ineffective in keeping smells at bay, there are now many brands that have perfected making ones that actually work. And why wouldn’t you want to move away from harmful, cancer-causing chemicals and allergens? If you’d like to try making one yourself, our DIY natural deodorant recipes above show that they’re fun and easy to make. Best of all, they’re all made with ingredients you can find at any grocery store. You can also use any fragrance you want – or none at all. So for a deodorant that is safe for our bodies and the environment – all while providing great odor-protection – you can’t go past an all natural deodorant.

References

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