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When I was doing The Naked Face Project (my 60-day experiment to give up all beauty products), the question I was asked most frequently was, without a doubt, “HOW are you giving up deodorant?”  People thought it was weird, unhygienic, and gross that I would go without deo.  The reality was that the Project started in the early springtime, and it wasn’t hot out yet. 

 

I quickly discovered that, when the weather was cooler, I didn’t need deodorant the way that I had been ‘trained’ to believe.  This revelation eventually proved true for a lot of beauty products (I’ve probably worn makeup ten times since the Project concluded at the end of March; a big switch from being a daily wearer).  Anyway, by the time the Project was at the halfway mark, the temperature had risen significantly in Charlotte, and I soon realized that – for at least part of the year – I actually did need to wear deo unless I wanted to be a social outcast. 

Now, all of our bodies are different, and I’m sure many people would disagree with me and say that deodorant is a year-round necessity.  That’s cool – this is just what I figured out works for me!

 

A few years back, I was very committed to the Mitchum brand of deodorant, specifically their Power Gel.  The Power Gel uses aluminum zirconium tetrachlorohydrex glycine as an antiperspirant (AZG for short).  AZG works by triggering the pores in your armpits to close and preventing sweat production.  AZG literally diffuses into your pores and clogs them; your body will eventually break down the plug, breaking the antiperspirant effect.  One of my favorite websites is the Environmental Working Group, which has a huge database of beauty product chemicals and their safety.  AZG is generally considered safe and EWG gives a good safety rating (2 out of 10) to the Power Gel.  Pretty great for a conventional product!

 

Despite the OK from the EWG, the Husband and I started to switch over to ‘natural’ deodorant last year. Conventional products had always irritated his armpits (they got all red and blotchy), and I was interested in reducing the amount of aluminum I was putting on or in my body before getting pregnant – here’s why (I also stopped baking on aluminum cookie sheets and switched to glass for the same reason).  You all know that I’ve chosen to have a rather panic-free pregnancy and don’t generally freak out over things like ‘don’t eat that’ or ‘don’t do that,’ but I figured natural deo was a small and easy switch that I could make.

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It took a long time for us to find natural deodorants that we liked and worked with our respective body chemistries. Eventually, I settled on Tom’s of Maine (which scored a #1 on EWG) and the Husband selected Natural Liquid Rock by Kiss My Face (which scored a #2).  I think Tom’s is better because it’s a cream; the Husband prefers roll-on deodorant.  And a huge bonus for Tom’s is that they do not do any animal testing.

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The other day, I was curious how, exactly, my Tom’s deodorant worked, so I headed over to their website to break down the ingredients.  Most of the ingredients are for ‘consistency’ and ‘soothing feel.’ The following ingredients do the real work:

 

  • Glyceryl laurate: A vegetable oil that provides a deodorant effect. “In deodorant applications, it inhibits the growth of skin bacteria responsible for odor production. The mechanism of how it works hasn’t clearly been shown, but it is thought that the glyceryl laurate dissolves the outer membranes of the skin bacteria that produce body odor.” (Source)
  • Humulus lupulus: Derived from hops cones (yes, like in beer).  “The “bitter principles” that help hops to preserve beer also, it turns out, fight odor. [Tom’s] research team has shown that hops extract inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria… Hops acts by causing leakage in the bacterial cell membrane, which impairs bacterial function and therefore prevents odor formation.” (Source)
  • Cymbopogon flexuosus oil:  An oil derived from the lemongrass plant that provides a deodorant effect.

 

Now, of course, if you read deodorant labels, there are deodorants (which stop stinkage) and deodorant/antiperspirants (which also stop sweating).  Tom’s doesn’t necessarily keep you from getting wet under the pits; just from smelling.  And just because a product is natural doesn’t mean some people don’t react negatively to it. 

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So – that’s how Tom’s natural deodorant works!  I wouldn’t say it’s as effective as my old conventional brand, but it works decently enough for me.  And I like knowing that I’m not rolling aluminum under my armpits every day, even if most research says it’s safe in low doses.

 

For more: Four Natural Beauty Products that I Love (and One I Hate) and Seven Awesome Resources from the EWG

 

What’s your favorite brand of deodorant, conventional or alternative?

{ 76 comments }

 

Leave a Comment

  • Lindsey June 6, 2012, 11:06 am

    I use Mitchum right now but I think once its out I want to look at more natural deodorants for a few reasons, the aluminum reason and also Mitchum is not doing the job like it used to.

    Reply
  • jonelle June 6, 2012, 11:08 am

    I recently made the change. I’ve been using Lush’s coconut deodorant powder and like it, but this weekend I’m going to try making my own out of coconut oil, baking powder, and cornstarch. The powder is a bit pricey, so I want to try something else.

    Reply
  • Carolina John June 6, 2012, 11:09 am

    I like Tom’s. They are a good company and put out a good, effective product line. The toothpaste rocks too.

    Reply
  • Danielle June 6, 2012, 11:09 am

    Perfect timing for this post! I rarely wear deoderant (I usually forget to use it!) but in the summer months, it is a necessity! I’ve been wanting to try a natural product, so these reviews are handy. I may also try to make my own. The less harmful chemicals I can put on or in my body, the happier and healthier I’ll be!

    Reply
  • Crystal June 6, 2012, 11:10 am

    Another benefit of using natural deodorant as opposed to antiperspirant is that our bodies are meant to and need to sweat! It is how we cool down and release toxins and, as humans, our pits are a main way to do so.

    Reply
  • Michelle June 6, 2012, 11:11 am

    I ended up switching to a homemade deodorant after years of unsuccessful natural ones and it is awesome!

    I got the recipe for it from this site:
    http://angrychicken.typepad.com/angry_chicken/2008/07/homemade-deodor.html

    Reply
  • Maddie June 6, 2012, 11:11 am

    I too switched over to natural deodorant about a year ago, and I couldn’t be happier. I use Tom’s as well (mine is aluminum-free and propylene glycol-free), and while it doesn’t work as well as an anti-perspirant, it still does a good job. Like you said, Tom’s doesn’t prevent sweating, but it does mask the smell. I feel so much better using Tom’s, knowing that I’m not blocking my pores from doing what they’re naturally supposed to do- sweat!

    Reply
  • Megan E. June 6, 2012, 11:13 am

    I am one of the people who has a reaction to Tom’s! An itchy rash every time. So disappointing…

    I currently use Dove because it has less aluminum than the Secret I used to use. Even still it starts to irritate me every couple of weeks. I also used the crystal deodorant for awhile, which does a fair job of eliminating smell but I still got very wet under the arms. When my current one runs out, I want to try the Kiss My Face Liquid Rock. Fingers crossed!

    Reply
    • jessika June 7, 2012, 10:04 am

      I had a reaction to toms too! I tried their long lasting one, and within a few days, I lost a layer of skin! Sooo icky and scary. I looked online, and I guess after Colgate bought them they changed the recipe and my reaction was just one of many.

      So now I’m using either regular dove or oyin funk butter. But I’m always on the lookout for something better.

      Reply
  • Ashley // Our Little Apartment June 6, 2012, 11:13 am

    I’ve tried natural deodorants, but they just left me wet and stinky.

    BUT! My husband started making his own deodorant (the coconut oil and baking powder kind) a few months ago and I’ve started using it – it works SO well. More effective than my conventional deo. I’m amazed, because I am one stinky lady. ;) The only problem is, I can’t use it right after shaving or it burns.

    Reply
  • Alyssa June 6, 2012, 11:16 am

    Thank God for this post! I forgot to put on deodorant today and this reminded me. Luckily I keep an extra at work.

    Reply
  • Heather June 6, 2012, 11:19 am

    PSSSSSSSSSSSSST – you ended the project at the end of March, not May. [which makes a big difference in the 10 times you've worn make-up statistic ;) ]

    Reply
  • Hannah June 6, 2012, 11:19 am

    I have recently begun switching over to natural products as well (Which will be a very long process for me.. I use a lot of sh*t!)

    Lafe’s natural deodorant spray got really good reviews so that’s what I recently ordered. I hope it works! It gets a 0 on the EWG scale, too!

    Reply
  • Jess June 6, 2012, 11:21 am

    I just made the switch from dove to To ms. I’m loving Toms, though I sometimes feel I need to apply it a few times in the day……I’ve been using the natural powder, may try a different scent or a different brand.

    Reply
  • Grace June 6, 2012, 11:22 am

    It took me a while to get used to it since I live in Florida and had been using antiperspirant for over 5 years. I now use crystal deodorant that uses mineral salts I believe, it doesn’t work as well as Degree did but my boyfriend read an article and was concerned about me using the traditional stuff…

    Reply
  • Heidi June 6, 2012, 11:25 am

    Normally I just love stalking around on your blog but I recently made the switch to Toms as well and thought I’d comment. You were spot on when you say that Toms deodorant doesn’t really stop you from sweating. I live in Houston and with it being so hot here, I am finding that I need to actually put Toms on several times a day (didn’t have to do this with the conventional brand) I love the idea of putting less chemicals in my body but I may to test some different products to find something that works a little better for me during the summer months.

    Reply
  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat June 6, 2012, 11:30 am

    Thanks for the review Caitlin! I’ve been thinking about greening up some parts of my beauty routine, and if I was going to change deodorants, Toms is the one I’d switch to. Great to hear it worked well for you!

    Reply
  • Lindsay June 6, 2012, 11:30 am

    Be careful is using Tom’s of Maine. Once Colgate/Palmolive bought the company, I read that recipes were changed and that they’re environment-friendly and chemical usage was changed. I tried using Tom’s deodorant at the end of last year, and it did not work for me at all. I don’t sweat much at all unless I’m working out, and I was still left with an odor in the late afternoon.

    Enter: Crystal Deodorant.

    It is the best natural deo I’ve come across, and I’m shocked more people don’t know about it. Not only does it work wonders for me, but my husband made the transition this last winter too. We live in Houston. It’s hot AND humid, and we both use it daily. The ingredients are as natural as they come, and they have a solid stick and a roll-on. I really recommend trying Crystal Deo!

    Reply
    • Ali June 6, 2012, 11:56 am

      Ditto on this. I used Toms forever, but eventually started getting a reaction to it and I felt it lost its effectiveness over time, too. I switched to the salt crystal and am never going back. Doesn’t stop the sweat, but I never, ever smell anymore. And that’s saying a lot, in my case – I’m a stinker! It’s amazing stuff.

      Reply
    • Jenn June 13, 2013, 12:53 am

      Okay, I might be crazy, but I’ve been trying to use Crystal, and it seems to give me BO instantly. Is something weird going on in my armpits?!

      Reply
  • Sarah June 6, 2012, 11:33 am

    I tried hard to love Tom’s but it just didn’t last all day for me.

    Now I use Arm & Hammer’s Natural, unscented kind. It’s aluminum and paraben free but still contains some chemicals that hard-core natural people don’t like. BUT… it works really well for me and I don’t have itchy pits like I get with traditional deodorant.

    Reply
  • Amber June 6, 2012, 11:41 am

    I love LaVanilla Healthy Deoderant! It smells so good and I have actually started sweating less since I switched from conventional anti-perspirants. I used to have sweat marks on my shirts all of the time. (Yuck!) Now, almost never!

    Reply
  • Susan June 6, 2012, 11:43 am

    I make my own at home! As someone mentioned above, with coconut oil, baking soda, corn starch, and essential oil. It can be harsh for sone people with super sensitive skin, but it works perfectly for me, especially because it’s cheap! Bob’s Red Mill is my favourite baking soda. I’ve read about iffy processing practices with Arm & Hammer, although not sure if it’s 100% true.

    Reply
  • Emily June 6, 2012, 11:48 am

    I decided last year to switch to natural deodorant. I must be super stinky, because I tried *every* natural deodorant I could and none of them kept me stink-free. Until. The deodorant that changed my life: Soapwalla! It’s sold on etsy by a woman in Brooklyn who makes wonderful products. I think it must be the essential oils that make it work so well for me – since starting to use it in February, I haven’t had a stinky day, even after vigorous exercise. Here’s a whole article singing the praises of Soapwalla:

    http://thehairpin.com/2012/04/an-interview-with-natural-deodorant-wizard-rachel-winard-of-soapwalla

    I highly encourage anyone frustrated with natural deodorants to try it!

    Reply
    • jen June 6, 2012, 1:39 pm

      it changed my life.

      Reply
    • jesse.anne.o June 6, 2012, 7:05 pm

      I seriously love Soapwalla. At the holiday pop-up store I showed up to buy 4 deodorants for myself to save on shipping.

      Reply
  • jane June 6, 2012, 12:02 pm

    i rarely use deodorant and i live in south florida…i am allergic to scented deodorant so just don’t really think the unscented stuff does anything!

    Reply
  • Alyse June 6, 2012, 12:04 pm

    I actually get my deodorant from a seller on Etsy. One tube lasts me about six months. There’s nothing crazy in it and I always get it unscented. I gave up antiperspirant a long time ago because I mean, we’re supposed to sweat so why stop it? So far I have never been stinky.

    http://www.etsy.com/listing/21003753/natural-deodorant-full-size-charleston

    Reply
  • Rachel June 6, 2012, 12:06 pm

    i find that b/c i shower everyday, i don’t need deo/antiperspirant. i was using Toms for a while & liked it. i’m lucky though, b/c i really don’t sweat on a day to day basis (aside from working out). i figure it’s one less product to buy & use.

    Reply
  • Margaret June 6, 2012, 12:13 pm

    I’ve been working on switching to Crystal mineral salt deodorant (http://www.thecrystal.com/) – outside of work I’m good with it, it keeps me from smelling. But of course it’s not an anti-persperant, so still can show wetness, which is why I’m hesitant to use only it at work.

    But as someone mentioned above, my concern isn’t really about the aluminum, it’s about stopping your body from sweating! I haven’t done research into it, but I can’t imagine that’s healthy!

    Reply
  • Caryln June 6, 2012, 12:14 pm

    Any suggestions for a natural antiperspirant?

    Reply
  • Sara June 6, 2012, 12:15 pm

    I’m still using up my stash of Secret but I plan on switching to something natural. I hear awesome things about Soapwalla (though at $12 a pop it’s much more expensive). Also, I heard of a recipe that’s equal parts corn starch, baking soda, and coconut oil (or shea butter if you prefer that). Add in some essential oils (tea tree is anti-bacterial but smells medicinal, you can also use ones like lavender). Supposedly this stuff will burn if you put it on too soon after you shave, but otherwise it can be effective! I plan to test this out during the swampy DC summer.

    Reply
  • Lauren June 6, 2012, 12:29 pm

    This is so interesting. I’ve used dove for a while but was thinking of switching to something aluminum free. The hops part is interesting as well. I bet soaking your feet in hoppy beer would be great if you suffer from stinky feet.

    Reply
  • Sarah M June 6, 2012, 12:31 pm

    I just switched from Dove to Tom’s and I love it!

    Reply
  • Kimberly June 6, 2012, 12:34 pm

    I’ve tried several natural deodorants, including Toms of Maine, but each time I develop a rash after using them for a few weeks. I think for the time being I’ll switch to Mitchum. Mitchum also doesn’t test on animals, which is great for a conventional product!

    Reply
  • Tara June 6, 2012, 12:35 pm

    I actually just started making my own deodorant that includes coconut oil, baking soda, and corn starch + essential oils. I love it! I was using crystal essence spray and another natural deodorant, but didn’t like that I had to use both products and I wasn’t 100% happy with the results. I’ve had no problems with the homemade deodorant, I don’t smell, and I like that I know exactly what is in it.

    Reply
  • Maura @ My Healthy 'Ohana June 6, 2012, 12:37 pm

    Great post! I had never even heard of Tom’s before yesterday, and then you did this great post on it :) I love knowing why/how things work!

    Reply
  • kalli June 6, 2012, 12:46 pm

    a few months back i switched to natural brands of deodorant and stopped using any antipersperants all together. i think our body should be allowed to sweat. however i run ALOT and ending up getting major chaffing under my arms which i coul dnot figure out why it was happening. i finally realized it is becasue my arm pits were sweating so much while i ran. the chaffing was horrible. i finally had to go back to regular chemicals under my pits. i hate it!

    Reply
  • Calla June 6, 2012, 12:50 pm

    I’ve tried several deodorants in the past few years – the thing that makes me nervous about aluminum is that they’ve found some links to Alzheimer’s disease and aluminum in the brain. I tried a crystal, which I didn’t find was super effective in the summer but which might have been OK at cooler times of the year. (I don’t know, because I dropped it in the sink one day and it broke, which was a major bummer – there was a lot left!) Also, some of the crystals still contain some aluminum, so if going aluminum-free is the goal, read carefully.

    Later I tried Tom’s and it reacted really badly with my (very sensitive, very dry) skin. (Nothing worse than a sore, itchy rash under one’s arms, am I right?) For almost a year now I’ve been using a deodorant by Adidas, which has 0% aluminum. It has a scent and I wish it didn’t, but it’s worked pretty well and for the most part seems OK for my skin.

    Reply
  • Evan Thomas June 6, 2012, 1:03 pm

    I like the lemongrass scented Tom’s deoderant because it makes my armpits smell like Thai food.

    Reply
  • Kim June 6, 2012, 1:03 pm

    I’ve been using salt deodorant for 4 years now and I can’t imagine going back to the regular stuff. I used to get really bad rashes from conventional deodorant and I was SO happy when I found my salt stick. It’s simply a hunk of salt with a rounded end for application. It’s nothing fancy, but it gets the job done. Oh and it raise’s some eyebrows when going through security checkpoints in airports. lol

    Reply
  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats June 6, 2012, 1:07 pm

    I was thinking about trying Toms but I think I won’t now that i know it only reduces odor, I need some help with the sweat too!

    Reply
  • Emily June 6, 2012, 1:28 pm

    I tried Toms last year and it did NOT work for me AT ALL. I was left smelling on the hot Nashville summer days. Ick!

    Reply
  • Amanda P June 6, 2012, 1:29 pm

    I’ve switched from regular antiperspirants to Trader Joe’s brand which is a natural deodorant that uses cotton to absorb sweat. Honestly I don’t think stopping our bodies from sweating is healthy. It’s how we cool ourselves down. I’m not a heavy sweater but I have been really happy with my TJ’s deo and haven’t had any complaints so far

    Reply
    • Amanda A June 6, 2012, 2:37 pm

      As a heavy sweater, I have to disagree. I need an antiperspirant, especially in the summer. No one wants to see my sweat stains that practically come all the way out to my chest. Trust me, I sweat plenty elsewhere to cool myself.

      Reply
  • Maribeth June 6, 2012, 1:53 pm

    i don’t regularly wear deo, and i never have. only when i know i’ll be nervous for something, like an exam. nothing makes me STINK like nerves, and when that happens, i go for the heavy duty stuff- mitchum.

    Reply
  • Lexi @ You, Me, & A World to See June 6, 2012, 1:55 pm

    I tried Tom’s, but it had a really weird effect and didn’t help with stinkage. If anything, it made it worse, for whatever reason. I wanted to love it, but it was bizarre haha.

    Reply
    • Sandy June 6, 2012, 5:32 pm

      This was totally me! I tried Tom’s and for some reason it made me stink! I have forgotten to wear deodorant some days, ok, many days and if I don’t work out, I really don’t stink at all, even though I do sweat alot, and the husband can vouch that I don’t stink :)

      But, I tried Toms, I could actually smell myself stinking at the end of the day, which has never happened in my life ! So weird!

      Reply
  • Lauren June 6, 2012, 2:15 pm

    Umm, I don’t wear deodorant… Like maybe a few times a year? (Ie. Summer wedding, or some other big event). And before you get all ‘Eww, OMG, you’re disgusting,’ I don’t really sweat and I don’t really smell. And yes, I have received input from others seeing as it can be sometimes difficult to decipher how you exactly smell, i.e.. how offensive etc. Anyways, if I do notice anything, I’ll just go into the bathroom, wash myself with a little soap and water and bam! Fresh as new :)

    Reply
    • Amber K June 6, 2012, 3:02 pm

      Same here! And with how blunt some of my friends are, they would definitely let me know if it was a problem! lol.

      Reply
  • Amy Lanford June 6, 2012, 2:28 pm

    I got so excited when I saw what your post was about today!!! weird? I’ve actually been having a tough time with deodorant lately. I’m finding that my old standby (Sure Original) is making my pits itch like crazy…I’ve tried switching over to other natural deos and have tried Toms. I like Toms but have found it doesn’t keep the BO smell away when it’s hot out! Would you recommend any other “natural” deos besides Toms?

    Reply
  • Sana June 6, 2012, 2:28 pm

    I use a natural deodorant from Whole Foods, its a spray and I swear I sweat LESS with it. I am usually stinky and gross with reg deodorant…

    Reply
  • Meshell June 6, 2012, 3:00 pm

    Crunchy Betty (http://www.crunchybetty.com/) has some great DIY deoderants that are fairly cheap and easy to make. I am all about making my own products because it gets you more involved with your health, is lots of fun, and much, much cheaper.

    I currently use conventional DO since I ran out of my Tom’s, but that will change in the near future! :D

    Reply
  • Amber K June 6, 2012, 3:01 pm

    I actually haven’t worn any deodorant in years. I have super dry skin and rarely sweat. I shower after I work out and otherwise, I’m dry. I’ve read that coconut oil actually works great as a deodorant. I haven’t actually tried it, but I’ve heard from others that it works great!

    Reply
  • Brigid June 6, 2012, 4:12 pm

    I use straight-up baking soda in lieu of deodorant, and I love it. I tried some of the natural stuff, but I swear it all just made me sweat more and then smell all perfumey, so I find this works better for me. Once in a rare while — if I am going to an important event, mainly — I will use a swipe of my husband’s conventional stuff, but unless I’ve been working out hard (or haven’t showered, ha), I realized that I don’t really smell. Hurray!

    Reply
  • Alicia June 6, 2012, 4:21 pm

    I used Tom’s of Maine in the past, but it really irritates my armpits.
    Beginning with this pregnancy, I switched to my own mix of coconut oil, baking soda, corn starch, and sometimes a few drops of an essential oil. It’s so effective that I will be using this for the rest of my life! But I still can’t convince my husband to stop using Mitchum.

    Reply
  • lauren June 6, 2012, 4:53 pm

    I tried Tom’s and I wanted to love it, but the longer lasting one (or clear? there was something special about it) gave me a crazy itchy rash that lasted for days. The company was great and replaced it with a “regular” formula..but it didn’t work for me. I smelled like Tom’s and sweat :)
    I’m using degree now and love that it doesn’t leave residue, but I wouldn’t mind trying another natural option…but I think I’ll wait until after the summer though.

    Reply
  • jesse.anne.o June 6, 2012, 7:02 pm

    Seriously, I’ve never heard anything but BAD reviews regarding Tom’s. I had an awfully gross time with it. Also, while the Tom’s brand doesn’t do any animal testing, their parent company does. Whereas Kiss My Face doesn’t at all.

    I’m with another poster – I stick with Soapwalla with some powder over it (otherwise I’ve had it’s oils ruin some shirts and I had a friend who had the same experience and stopped using it). It’s the ONLY natural deodorant I’ve found that worked consistently. A lot of times your body just acclimates to natural deodorant and it’ll work for a week or two and then stop.

    I’ve been through Tom’s, Avalon Organics, Kiss My Face Liquid Rock, Thai Crystal, ZionHealth ClayDry, Lush’s Armorant, Crystal Roll-on and probably about 10 more I can’t even remember. Soapwalla is the only one I’ve stayed with continually.

    Reply
  • Jenna June 6, 2012, 8:29 pm

    Okay.
    I really really want to be on the bandwagon and
    I have been trying to love natural deo for the past few months…. but my biggest issue is that I can’t get the ‘au natural’ [read: b.o.] smell out of the armpits of my shirts.
    Help?! Anyone?
    I’ve been using Sals Suds as my laundry detergent over the same period of time.

    Reply
    • Alina July 4, 2012, 11:05 am

      Soak them! My mom soaks my sister and I’s dance clothes (re: insane BO!) in water with a dash of baking soda (about 1 T for every 6 cups of water) and a splash of vinegar. It also was effective in removing yellowing under the arms of yellow shirts. This worked awesome for us, but I would recommend trying it on one shirt you don’t care so much about and seeing what happens. Good luck!

      Reply
  • Lee June 6, 2012, 9:10 pm

    I have tried both of those brands and I just don’t like the way they smell. However, maybe I’ll try a different scent. I’m not particularly sweaty in general, so I think I really just need deodorant, not so much anti-perspirant.

    Reply
  • Elaine June 6, 2012, 10:14 pm

    I make my own deodorant. I use 3 parts coconut oil to 1 part baking soda and 1 part corn starch. Works SOOOO well.

    Reply
  • Liz June 7, 2012, 12:28 am

    I wouldn’t mind using a natural deoderant, but I have a bad allergy to almost every deoderant/anti-persperant I’ve tried – they make my armpits itch like CRAZY! (not too cool to scratch your pits in public…). The absolute only ones I’ve found that work for me are: Almay Clear Gel Fragrance Free & Mitchum Unscented Power Gel (has to be the Men’s). I can’t use any solids or roll-ons or scented ones from those brands. So…I’m glad to hear that Mitchum & Almay both rank pretty well on the EWG site!

    Reply
  • Shiny Happy Vegan June 7, 2012, 6:35 am

    Thanks for this post. I have been having an internal “deo” debate for about a year and a half and still can’t settle on anything. So far I am most happy w/ a clay deodorant I found from Zion Health. It smells great and actual keeps me pretty dry even though it’s not an antiperspirant. I bought the Tom’s of Maine a while back but then noticed it had palm oil in it (which I avoid at all costs), so I had to return it. The Zion stuff is perfect except in hot weather when I’m working outdoors or exercising a lot. I still need to find something a tiny bit stronger to get me through summer. So is AZG safer than straight-up aluminum?

    Reply
  • Sara June 7, 2012, 8:54 am

    I switched to Tom’s of Maine’s citrus roll-on (It’s the 24 hour one? I think?) Anyway, it works really well and helps with the smell and the wetness! No problem with both. I forgot to put on deo one day and realized it when I got to work. I was panicked I’d smell, but I really didn’t! (I had my husband sniff my pits that night to check.) It just felt kind of foreign under there since I was used to deo!

    Reply
  • Lauren J @ The Barn June 7, 2012, 12:12 pm

    I’ve been using just plain baking soda for over a month now. I had used it for three weeks straight and was absolutely amazed at how effective it was. I’m talking, you do NOT stink, at all, no matter how hard you have worked out, or how hot it is. You do still sweat, but I figured that was a natural body process that is supposed to happen.

    However, after about three weeks I got a mad irritation in my armpits, and it was because of the baking soda. I’ve read about people mixing it with cornstarch or arrowroot or coconut oil to help, but seeing as I have started using baking soda for a number of things I still keep it simple. Luckily I am at home most of the week, in which case I don’t wear deodorant, the other days I use the baking soda. Keeping it to a few days a week seems to keep the irritation at bay. It’s the most effective thing I’ve ever found!

    Reply
  • Susanna June 7, 2012, 1:14 pm

    I have been using natural deodorant for years – but I always have a bar of regular deodorant on stand-by, just in case I need heavy duty protection (e.g., job interview, where nerves will make me stink and sweat like a mofo). I have been using The Crystal for quite a while – the key is to put in on after you shower, so that it impregnates your pores. I also have a tea tree deodorant from Thursday Plantation that I like quite a lot. As most everyone has mentioned, they don’t prevent sweating, which is a good thing on most cases and might wear down after a whole day. However, I don’t care about smelling like Glade air freshener after a hard workout…and I don’t care most of the time if I get a little wet. It is natural, especially if you live in a place where it can get as hot as 110 F. As far as laundry goes, I use Charlie Soap (unscented – their motto is “if you want the smell of fresh flowers, go to the garden”) Bac-Out, vinegar (fabric softener) and baking soda . This has kept all of my clothes – even my technical gear – smelling fresh year after year. Also, hanging your laundry out to dry makes it smell oh-so fresh!

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  • Heidi June 7, 2012, 9:21 pm

    I must be extra sweaty and stinky because I tried Tom’s and I had visible sweat marks on my clothes and I smelled BAD! (And I live in New England, so it isn’t a hot climate!) I switched to Dove and I do stink and sweat much less. I’d really like to find a more natural deodorant, but for now I’ll just settle for being stink free!

    Reply
  • Sarah June 8, 2012, 6:31 am

    Toms is my favorite brand for deodorant. I didn’t know how it works, though! Thanks for passing the info along :-).

    Reply
  • MelodyJ June 13, 2012, 6:40 pm

    I tried Tom’s in the 90′s and was allergic to it. I like Kiss My Face but my brother says it doesn’t last all day on him.

    Some people can goes without deo but I can’t. Hopefully one day we will all find our perfect natural deo.

    Reply
  • Alina July 4, 2012, 11:00 am

    I know it sounds strange, but I think my body has been trained to not work as effectively with other deoderants since I’ve been using one brand (Secret) for so long. It’s super strange, but I don’t sweat a ton (or stink a lot, for that matter- just when I’m exersizing or when it’s super-hot) but I recently tried two new kinds of deoderant (Lady’s Speed Stick and Adidas) with no success. Hopefully the ingredients you mentioned could help me figure out why. Thanks for posting this!

    Reply
  • Kris August 15, 2012, 8:09 pm

    Try our vintage all natural deodorant made with Coconut Oil, Baking Soda, Cornstarch, Beeswax and Melaleuca Oil. PitStik – Changing the way you stik your pit **It WORKS!!!**
    http://www.etsy.com/listing/104196499/2-pit-stik-all-natural-vintage-scentable
    ~*~*~*~*~* COMING SOON *~*~*~*~*~*~*
    Our all natural milder deodorant for your junior or tween – twit-Stik!!

    Reply
  • Danielle June 28, 2013, 8:07 pm

    I absolutely REFUSE to touch anti-perspirants. I don’t really see the point when you can buy a product like Lavilin, which is an all-natural aluminum-free deodorant. Lovely product and never dissapoints!

    Reply
  • Katherine July 24, 2013, 3:43 am

    Danielle’s right. Stay away from aluminum-base deodorants and anti-perspirants!! They are terrible for you and can lead to Alzheimer’s! I would also suggest Lavilin, which I started using when I got pregnant with my twins. It is an amazing product that’s natural, smells great, and lasts several days after one application! Love love LOVE the product!!

    Buy it here: http://www.microbalanced.com

    Reply

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