Wondering What to Use Instead of Deodorant? Here Are 8 Suggestions

Many people freak out about the ingredients in commercial antiperspirants. Whether you take the ostrich approach and try to ignore the potential health risks or you have a more active reaction to this fast, the truth is deodorants may do you more harm than good. Do you ever think of the chemicals your body absorbs in the name of being stink-free? If you’re wondering what to use instead of deodorant, today we have a lovely selection of green, homemade recipes you might want to give a try.

What to Use Instead of Deodorant

Research over the past few years have linked antiperspirants to dangerous health risks, including Alzheimer’s disease and breast cancer. While there’s still plenty of debate around these potential connections, further studies may prove that deodorants do cause such illnesses. The main reason is the active ingredient in these care products, a compound that contains aluminum. The ingredient helps prevent any perspiration by temporarily blocking your sweat ducts. That doesn’t sound very healthy, does it?

Detoxing your armpits with natural deodorants

Detoxing your armpits with natural deodorants / Credit

Fortunately, people swear by a lot of alternatives out there, natural solutions that keep you smelling A-OK even on the hottest days. Here is a list of deodorant alternatives you can try if you’re feeling suspicious about the chemicals in your spray can.

1. Natural Deodorants

Looking for a more natural deodorant? The available options are endless! On one hand, there are deodorant stones – smooth crystals of potassium aluminum sulfate that you wet and apply like any other deodorant stick. However, even though potassium alum is much better than aluminum, you may want to completely eliminate this ingredient from your armpits. Trader Joe’s Kiss My Face, and Burt’s Bees are just some companies that sell aluminum-free deodorant sticks.

RELATED: [Top Best 6 Natural Deodorant Suggestions and Reviews]

2. Lemon Juice

Did you know lemon juice is a magical BO fighter? According to Ellen Marmur, an associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center, lemon juice is effective as a natural deodorant because of the citric acid that successfully kills stinky bacteria. To be honest, however, don’t expect it to keep you dry. Even natural antiperspirants do plug the sweat glands a bit, but that’s not something you can get from lemon juice. So if you don’t mind the slight wetness on some days, give it a try!

3. Baking Soda & Corn Starch

Is there something baking soda can’t do? Use it if you’re looking for a natural deodorant that combats BO without dousing your skin in chemicals. Mix 1/8 of a teaspoon of baking soda with a little bit of water (without dissolving it) and rub it with your fingers on your armpits. To also prevent wetness, create another baking soda and cornstarch mix. Mix 1 part baking soda with 6 parts cornstarch, then dust a small amount on your underarms every time you head out the door.

4. Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is not just effective at killing odor-related bacteria. It’s also inexpensive and easy to make at home. Simply fill a spray bottle with alcohol and spray your underarms with it.  The smell of rubbing alcohol disappears after it dries, but if you want to avoid it altogether, add a few drops of essential oil. We recommend witch hazel because it is mildly astringent, or tea tree oil because it also fight against body odor.

RELATED: [How to Make Deodorant: Natural Alternatives to Store-Bought Formulas]

5. Apple Cider Vinegar

You may be using apple cider vinegar for home cleaning purposes, but did you know it doubles as deodorant, as well? It is actually an effective alternative because it neutralizes odor. Mix ½ apple cider vinegar with ½ water and use a cotton ball to rub it on your armpits. It dries in about 20-30 seconds, and the poignant vinegar smell goes away pretty fast, too.

6. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is especially great for people with sensitive skin looking for an effective natural deodorant. Even though it’s gentle and soothing, it also reduces odor. Aloe also has antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, which means it works wonders as an antibacterial natural ingredient. This alternative to commercial deodorants is also great for people who don’t like to mix ingredients. You can use fresh aloe vera directly from a plant, but if you don’t have one, buy a bottle of aloe vera gel. Apply it to your underarm area and you’re good to go!

7. Essential Oils

Choosing your essential oils based on smell is a good option, but what about essential oils that also kill bacteria? Since you’re not just looking to mask odors, but prevent them as well, here are some examples you might try. Sage, coriander, and Roman chamomile are all great candidates, as well as lavender, cypress, myrtle, sandalwood, tea tree oil or citronella.

Make your own EO deodorant by mixing 20 drops of essential oil for every 4 ounces of distilled water. Place the solution in a small spray bottle, shake gently and apply it whenever necessary. If you also want to stay dry, combine the following ingredients:

  • 10 drops of essential oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons of coconut or jojoba oil
  • 4 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons of cornstarch.

After mixing well, store the blend in the fridge. Apply on clean skin as needed.

8. Coconut Oil

If you try it just once, coconut oil will absolutely become your favorite go-to natural deodorant. It is gentle, soothing, and it minimizes odor without blocking your sweat glands. Coconut oil is also antibacterial, antiviral, and antimicrobial. What a simple ingredient to fight the bacteria that cause the armpit odor!

Natural deodorants fight against workout odor

Natural deodorants fight against workout odor / Credit

Why You Should Give These Deodorant Alternatives a Try

We’ve already told you about aluminum, but did you know most local store deodorants also contain other harmful chemicals, including synthetic fragrances and parabens? Because the skin absorbs them so easily, these chemicals meet no resistance in entering your organism. Many times, people apply deodorant right after shaving under their arms. Shaving your skin opens the pores, so even more chemicals are absorbed into the body in the minutes after.

This is our list of natural alternatives to commercial deodorants. However, there are thousands of other recipes out there, so we would love to hear about your experiences! Did you find that one ingredient that simply works for you? Please share with us in the comment section below.

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William E. Eubanks

I'm one of the main writers on the site; mostly dealing with environmental news and ways to live green. My goal is to educate others about this great planet, and the ways we can help to protect it.

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