Full of Days DIY Deodorant
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he Hubs and I have been using homemade deodorant for over three years, and guess what? We don’t stink!

I’ll admit it’s no clinical strength deodorant. I used to go days without re-applying that stuff and still be stink free! (Before you judge, it’s important you know I used to be a backpacking guide through the mountains for weeks at a time during the muggy summer months. Showers weren’t always an option, clinical strength deodorant was!)

But lets get real, the ingredients in those mainstream deodorants are less than stellar. I’m one for doing my utmost to lead a non-chemical laden lifestyle. That goes for what I put in and on my body.

Did you know that sweating is healthy? Our skin is our largest organ, and an integral part of the body’s ability to detox. Antiperspirants hinder (and damage) the body’s ability to get this job done.

Next time you’re out of deodorant give this recipe a try. It’s one of the easiest homemade deodorant recipes I’ve made.

Below are the ingredients in my old deodorant and the dangers those ingredients pose to my health:

  • Fragrance – Scores an 8 on EWG.org. Ecotoxicology (harmful to our environment), causes allergies/immunotoxicity (damaging to our immune system), irritation to skin, eyes or lungs, and organ system toxicity (non-reproductive).
  • Petrolatum – Carcinogenic (cancer causing), organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), neurotoxicity (causes damage to the brain and/or peripheral nervous system) and bioaccumulation (not always a bad thing when it comes to vitamins and minerals, but when toxic chemicals are absorbed and build up in our bodies faster than we’re able to neutralize and excrete them, this can cause harmful side effects).
  • Cyclopentasiloxane – Carcinogenic, ecotoxicology, endocrine disruption (interferes with hormone production and regulation), organ system toxicity (non-reproductive), neurotoxicity and bioaccumulation.
  • Dimethicone – Ecotoxicology and organ system toxicity (non-reproductive).

Call me crazy, but I don’t want to risk all of the above just so I don’t sweat a little, especially when I can make my own with four simple ingredients!

…and the bonus is, you probably have everything needed in your pantry!”

Ingredients

6 T Coconut Oil
1/4 cup (4 T) Baking Soda or Diatomaceous Earth
1/4 cup (4 T) Arrowroot or Cornstarch
30-50 drops essential oils of choice

To Make: Put coconut oil in a small glass jar and place jar in a shallow pot of boiling water.  Once coconut oil is soft, remove from stove and add baking soda and arrowroot or cornstarch. Stir to combine. Add essential oils, if using, and place jar in the refrigerator. Continue to stir every 10 minutes until deodorant is firm (to ensure no separation occurs).

For sensitive skin: If you find that lowering the baking soda is still too harsh for your skin, then use 1/4 cup food grade diotomaceous earth instead.

  • Essential oils are amazing products and we use them on a daily basis. Be sure your oils are 100% pure and know proper dilution ratios.
  • If you’re used to mainstream deodorants (particularly those containing aluminum), it may take a few weeks before your body adjusts to this new deodorant. Once your body regulates, you should be able to go a full 24 hours “stink free“.
  • If you have sensitive skin, you can lessen the amount of baking soda and increase the amount of arrowroot or cornstarch accordingly.

Post Update:  A few of you have let us know that your homemade deodorant is quite runny and not staying solid. This can happen when temperatures are above 75 degrees (coconut oil melts at 76 degrees, so even low 70’s can make it soft), when deodorant is exposed to humidity, or when deodorant is not stirred frequently enough during the cooling step. If this is happening to you, try finding a cool cupboard to store your deodorant away from the heat of the shower or sink. Alternatively, you can add an extra tablespoon or two of arrowroot or cornstarch to see if that helps. And, as a last resort, you can always store your deodorant in the refrigerator. Also, continue reading for updated information regarding the ingredients in my former deodorant and the dangers they posed to my health…

Showing 16 comments
  • Beth
    Reply

    So I FINALLY made this deodorant and now that I have I’m wondering why I took soooooo long!!!!! This is amazing!! It works as well as the store bought without all the “bad for you” stuff in it. So easy and economical to make!!! This will be my deodorant for life now!!! Thanks Kelsey!!

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      Awesome Beth! I’m so glad it works for you! When I first started using this deodorant, I found I had to reapply after about 12 hours. But now that I’ve been using it for over two years I can go a full day without any “scent issues”. 😉

  • Angela Marie
    Reply

    I love making my own deodorant! James thinks I am crazy still about it. I made some that had a more “manly” scent with tea tree, cedarwood oils, but he won’t try it LOL. Thanks for this recipe! I will have to try this one next time!

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      Keep with it! Jason was really skeptical at first, but eventually saw the all around benefits to our entire life! He realizes the money we save by making DIY items, how much better our food tastes now that it’s “real” and the value in doing these things ourselves!

    • Jason Steffen
      Jason Steffen
      Reply

      Angela, thank you for chiming in! Have James read this post from a former skeptic…uh…me!

      • Angela Marie
        Reply

        Thanks guys! I will share with him that post! I look forward to following your blogging adventures!

  • Lauren
    Reply

    Have you ever tried food grade diatomaceous earth instead of baking soda for sensitive skin? Does the coconut oil stain shirts?

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      I haven’t used DE in deodorant Lauren, let me know how it works if you give it a try! And no, we haven’t noticed any staining from the coconut oil, you use such a tiny amount and it’s absorbed very quickly.

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      I just found a recipe that uses Diotomaceous Earth! It’s to be swapped out for the baking soda since some people have sensitivities to the baking soda. Use 1/4 cup DE and up the coconut oil by 1-2 tablespoons (or until desired consistency is reached) if needed.

  • Beth
    Reply

    So if the essential oils are for fragrance only..do I have to use them?

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      Not at all Beth! Should work just fine without them!

  • Heather
    Reply

    Thanks for sharing this! I like that you give a corn free option, arrowroot, since many people are allergic or sensitive to corn! 🙂 I love using pure Essential Oils for supporting the body naturally! Love removing as many toxins as possible! Easy recipe even for beginners! ♡

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      Yes! The brand of cornstarch I use is organic and GMO-free, but the arrowroot is a good sub!

  • Tammy
    Reply

    What essential oil do you recommend? Is it just about smell or are there health benefits?

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen
      Reply

      There are many health benefits to essential oils, but when it comes to my deodorant, I’m strictly going with scent preferences. I prefer citrus tones (said to promote focus and energy), but some may prefer lavender (which would add a soothing effect for sensitive skin). You may also consider dividing a batch into smaller jars so each member can choose their own scent preference (the man of the house may not want to walk around smelling like a flower!).

      • Tammy
        Reply

        Thanks Kelsey!

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