I first became interested in making my own deodorant when I found out most store bought deodorants contain aluminum chloride, which can encourage the growth of cancer cells.  How friendly.  Most store bought deodorant also contains various compounds/ingredients that mess with your hormones.  Sounds great, right?


In addition, the anti-perspirant chemicals aren’t good for your body.  Sweating is a natural way for our bodies to remove toxins from our bodies.  Totally blocking that process isn’t beneficial for the body.  For more information about this, check out this link: http://www.ideahacks.com/store-bought-deodorant/

Since going completely deodorant free wasn’t a feasible option (I’m all about being natural but I don’t want to be THAT natural), I started looking for an all natural deodorant.  If you look for all natural deodorants that don’t have toxic ingredients they tend to be REALLY expensive. Upon examining the ingredients list on them, I realized I could just make deodorant myself.  I’ve now been store bought deodorant free for nearly 2 years.  I wish I had done it so much sooner.  I know I sound like an insufferable hippie that is anti-deodorant, BUT I PROMISE, I don’t stink and I’m not a sweaty pig.  

My favorite DIY deodorant recipes

Spray deodorant:

I just use the Purify essential oil blend through DoTerra. Here’s my seller link if you want to check it out: https://www.mydoterra.com/sheabuttersunshinesarcasm

If you are a Young Living essential oil user, you can use the Purification oil blend. Anyways, I just pour the Purify essential oil into a amber colored glass spray bottle and spritz each of my pits twice and I’m good to go!  Yep, it’s that easy. If your skin is sensitive, you can add a carrier oil to the spray bottle.  You can also pour the Purify oil blend on your finger tips and apply onto your arm pits that way.  As for effectiveness, it works pretty good.  I HAVE noticed, if I’m working out hard at the gym or if it’s a hot summer day I may SOMETIMES get slightly stinky if I’ve been wearing it all day.  Honestly though, it’s not really noticeable unless I lift my arm and smell my pits.  One bottle of Purify essential oil lasts me about 2 months if I use it exclusively for deodorant.  In addition, it dries pretty quickly and doesn’t stain clothing.  Hooray! Caution: if you shave your armpits DON’T use this right after shaving.  If you do, use it with a carrier oil or it burns.  

Amber glass bottle I use for the this deodorant: 2 oz Amber Boston Round Glass Bottle with Fine Mist sprayer 6/bx

Paste deodorant:

My two favorites are the “Peaceful pits” deodorant and the Treehugger’s homemade deodorant.

Peaceful pits (baking soda free):


Ingredients: Shea butter, coconut oil, diatomaceous earth, arrowroot powder, and essential oils.

This recipe does take some extra work as you must melt it, cool it over an ice bath, and whip it.  That being said, all of those steps are well worth it when you get the end product.  It goes on super smooth and is perfect for sensitive skin. It feels like creamy body butter when you put it on your armpits.  That being said, I have noticed sometimes towards the end of the day it’s effectiveness wanes.  I still use it though because my armpits feel so soft afterwards and my skin has no reactions whatsoever.  In addition, it makes a big batch (about 16 oz) so it lasts awhile.  I use about a teaspoon a day, so it lasts me about 3 months.  I have found SOMETIMES it can leave a greasy stain on clothes if I don’t give it some time to sink in before putting a shirt on.  So, if you use this kind, give it a few minutes to absorb and then you should be good to go!  That being said, the stain washes out just fine, but I wanted to give that heads up in case anyone was wondering. 

This is my favorite shea butter to use: Real Certified ORGANIC RAW SHEA BUTTER, PREMIUM Unrefined African IVORY Tan/White Color; 16.0 oz [Two 8 oz Bars] in Gold UV Protective Bag. Best Natural Moisturizer; Great for DIY Body Butters, etc.

Treehugger’s homemade deodorant:


Ingredients: Shea butter, coconut oil, cornstarch, baking soda, and essential oils.

This recipe is fairly straight-forward.  Melt the oils, mix in the dry ingredients, and pour it all in a glass jar.  This one is very effective.  In other words, it stands up all day and night, even after an intense gym session.  That being said, you pay the price if you have sensitive skin.  Initially, when I first started using it, I could only wear it a few times a week because I would get a painful red rash.  I later found out this was because I was detoxing (the baking soda in it detoxes your body). (for info on detoxing pits: http://www.thehippyhomemaker.com/diy-baking-soda-free-peace-pits-deodorant/) Now, I can wear it without a painful red rash.  If I forget to wash it off before I go to bed though, my skin gets a bit tender.  So, sensitive skin people, use carefully and start out slow!  It makes a total of 10 tablespoons.  It usually lasts me 1 ½ months, as I usually only need about ¾ teaspoons for my armpits.  I have found it’s best to give this deodorant at least 5 minutes or so to absorb otherwise it can leave greasy stains on my clothes that haven’t always washed out.  That being said, this usually happens if I apply too much.  If you’re worried about it but want to make and use it, I would suggest starting with just a 1/4 teaspoon per armpit and giving it 5 minutes to dry before putting on a shirt, as a test. 

Stick deodorant:


Ingredients: Shea butter, coconut oil, beeswax, arrowroot powder, baking soda, and essential oils.

This one is THE BEST!  I saved the best for last people. It is ALSO the deodorant that converted my husband to using DIY deodorant.  I can wear it all day and work out hard at the gym AND there’s absolutely no stink or crazy sweatyness. It truly is amazing!  It’s also friendly for sensitive skin.  I haven’t had any reactions to it at all and I have sensitive skin.  I can honestly say this deodorant works just as good as store bought kind.  It wasn’t too hard to make either.  Melt some oils, mix in the dry ingredients, and pour into the deodorant containers.  That’s it!  One recipe fills two empty stick deodorant containers.  So, however long two stick deodorants last you, that’s how long this will last.  I haven’t found it to leave any residue on my clothes either which is awesome! 

I used these empty stick deodorants containers to make it and they work great:
Almost4Minds Deodorant Containers Empty 5 Pack- Make Your Own Deoderant, Heel Balm 2.65Oz /75g/30ml

The dreaded DETOX period:

Ah, the detox period.  Initially, yes, you ARE probably going to sweat more.  It IS going to be harder to cover up the stench from your armpits.  In your armpits defense though, it was used to being forced to be clogged up with chemicals.  Now your armpits are finally free!  They can do what they want!  And they do… for a time.  But, it gets better, I promise!  For some people, there is no detox period.  My hubby transitioned straight from store bought antiperspirant aluminum filled deodorant to the natural stick deodorant WITH NO DETOX.  Yes, I am a little jealous of this fact, BUT I guess I should be grateful for my nose’s sake.  Anyways, that being said, not everyone has such good fortune.  If you end up being like me, and going through a detox period (or if you’re simply feeling self-conscious about it), doing a Bentonite clay detox can help.  I personally didn’t do this while I was transitioning.  I honestly don’t know why I didn’t.  No one complained about how I smelled, so maybe that’s why I never got around to doing it?  Pathetic, I know. That being said, if you want to do a detox of your pits, here’s the link from one of my favorite bloggers on a good Bentonite clay armpit detox: https://wellnessmama.com/25432/detox-your-armpits/ 

In addition to doing a Bentonite clay armpit detox, eating a more plant based diet can ALSO help in transitioning to natural deodorant.  Did you know consuming a lot of animals products can cause you to be stinkier?  True story.  I’ve been vegetarian (well pescatarian technically, since I occasionally eat wild caught Alaskan Salmon) since February 2017, and I DEFINITELY have noticed a decrease in body odor since that diet change.  I’m hoping to go fully vegan soon (which is a topic for another time), which I’m sure would help even more.

Source: http://www.ideahacks.com/store-bought-deodorant/

Side note: For most paste or stick DIY deodorant’s, they tend to be a combination of coconut oil and/or shea butter, cornstarch/baking soda and/or arrowroot powder, and essential oils.  I personally, like the ones with a smaller margin of baking soda since it is better for sensitive skin (which everyone in my family has).  That being said, here are a few I HAVEN’T included in this post, that looks promising, if you want to check them out for yourself.  





Confession time! Have you ever ditched store bought deodorant free and/or made your own deodorant?  What were the results? If you haven’t yet, what concerns do you have about making your own deodorant? Which of the recipes that I have made do you want to try?  Let me know in the comments below.

Written by Rebekah
I'm a vegan homeschooling mom of 4, DIY addict, & natural health advocate.