Thursday, August 9, 2012

Surprisingly Simple (and Effective!) Deodorant

I've been trying for a long time to find natural, safe homemade versions of common household products. I make most of my own cleaners, my own dye- and fragrance-free soap, and even tried a couple of different homemade shampoos (with unimpressive results - so far!) So when I saw this blog post about using coconut oil as a deodorant, I was sceptical. When I thought about it more, though, it made sense - coconut oil is naturally anti-bacterial, so it should inhibit the microbes that cause body odor. But still, it seemed too simple . . .

But what would it hurt? I could try it around the house, and just shower before I went somewhere. So that's what I did - but I soon found that I didn't need the extra shower. It really worked! I've been using it for about a week now, so I can say with confidence that this is one DIY product that really does work (I'd even go so far as to say it works just as well as the Tom's of Maine deodorant I had been using). And it really is so simple! I didn't mess around with adding essential oils and such (I prefer not to wear 16 different scents, and since I'm still using conventional shampoo and conditioner, that's enough perfume for me).

All you need is 3 parts coconut oil (I used 3 Tablespoons, because I wanted to try it out with a small batch first) and 1 part baking soda (aluminum free is best). Just mix these two together and you're good! I apply it by just dipping a finger in the jar and then rubbing it in. The only slight issue I've had so far is that when the house is warm enough that the coconut oil is liquid, it seems that the baking soda settles to the bottom, so you have to stir it up again. Not really a big deal. The baking soda also seems to keep the coconut oil from getting completely hard, so it's easier to get a little bit off at a time (so far, anyway - we'll see what it's like when our house is 64 degrees in the winter!)

I just can't say how shocked and pleased I am with this deodorant! It really works!

(and no, it doesn't stain your clothes . . .)

This post is part of Simple Lives Thursday.


  1. I have to say that I have used this basic recipe for deodorant, and it DOES work . . . .however, I can't put it on right after I've shaved my armpits or they burn all day long!

  2. Excellent. Also, check out because her's has one extra ingredient and you can pack it into old deodorant sticks. I have not tried this yet, but may just go for it. In heat, I suppose you could keep it in the fridge, although it would be "inconvenient" (I'd probably forget to ever it put it on until I went to get something out of the fridge!). Since coconut oil melts so instantly, the warmth of your body should make it apply nicely?

  3. I also use coconut oil, topped with a sprinkle of baking soda. I like your idea to pre-mix!

  4. Bethany - I'm surprised by that; I'd think it would be pretty gentle (and I haven't experienced this) Hmmm ...
    Janet - I was just thinking about that this morning. It *should* work as a stick deodorant, if the weather is cool enough. And you're right - I could just keep it in the fridge in the summer!