Let’s talk natural deodorants. By now, we’ve heard how harmful unnatural deodorants (or really any unnatural cosmetics) are for your body and the environment. There’s some negativity surrounding going natural. Why? Because most of us have probably had a bad experience trying them out (or we could smell that someone else was). I’ve been there. In fact, I’ve been experimenting with many different brands over the past six years.
I first started questioning the types of deodorants I was using when I was still in high school. I couldn’t bring myself to commit to a natural brand just yet. It wasn’t until the summer I graduated that I decided to finally switch things up.
I didn’t exactly choose the right path for myself. I went almost full-on hippie from one day to the next and began making my own deodorant. I bought a spray bottle and filled it with water, coconut oil, sea salt, and lavender. This is a great option for a lot of people, but it just did not work for me at that time.
I wasn’t fully vegan at that point. What you eat has a big effect on how you smell and how much you sweat… you get the idea. I also went from using big brand names like Secret to my own little concoction. It was a lot of change all at once. I stuck with this method for a few months but it was not a good experience. I was always embarrassed, too paranoid to lift up my arms, and often felt like giving up on the natural path. I know that this is a common experience at first but I am here to encourage you not to give up!
Like many things, there’s a natural deodorant out there for everyone. You just have to stay committed to trying out different ones to find the right one for you. Trust in your body; it WILL adapt and the effort is completely worth it!
*I’d like to note that although I do recommend trying out the following products, I want to emphasize the importance of trying to go ZERO-WASTE. Most of these deodorants come in plastic and it is not something that lines up with my morals anymore. Doing my part in helping out our planet is becoming more of a priority by the day, and I encourage you to be conscious of your plastic usage as well. You’ll find a zero-waste recommendation at the end of this post! Supporting zero-waste or making your own at home is my ultimate recommendation. Continue reading for more info!
Back when Manuel and I first started (finally) dating, we took a trip to Los Angeles. When we were unpacking our bags in our hotel room, we both pulled out our “his and hers” Herban Cowboy Deodorants. It was at that moment (and many, many others) that we knew we were perfect for each other. Manuel has been using “Wild” by Herban Cowboy for probably about five years now. It’s worked for him perfectly since the beginning and has never needed anything else. Plus it smells FREAKIN GREAT. I used “Blossom” for a few years and it worked well for a while but my body gave up on it for whatever reason. I eventually found myself always having to reapply, so I decided to try something else out. I still highly recommend it for anyone searching for their perfect product.
Pros: wonderful scents, all vegan, sustainable
Cons: stopped working for me, plastic container
Let me introduce you to Thai Crystal Deodorant. When I first started using this brand, I used their salt rock. I took a look at the label to see that it stated: Ingredients: Mineral Salts. I was sold.
I instantly fell in love with this product. It worked so well for me and the ingredients were unbeatable. That being said, there were still some downsides. In order to use it, you have to wet the stone and then apply it to your underarms. It may not seem like that big of an extra step, but after some time it did get a little annoying, especially when I wanted to use the deodorant on the go. After about six months of using it, the rock started smelling, and in turn, I started smelling after using it. I think to avoid this, you have to let the stone dry before screwing the container back together.
Pros: deodorizes well, great ingredients
Cons: inconvenient application, plastic container
At that point, I decided to try yet another brand. This time, I went with Schmidt’s. I purchased the Lavender + Sage scent. The product comes in a small glass jar with a small spatula. In order to apply it, you scoop some out with a spatula, rub/warm it up with your fingers, then apply to your underarms. Not exactly a convenient application (why are all of these deodorants so hard to apply?!) but I felt it was worth it anyway. They also come in the typical sticks, but I preferred purchasing the glass container.
I absolutely loved it at first but alas, this one also stopped working for me. I found myself sweating more than usual. To experiment with it, I stopped using deodorant all together on and off for a couple of days. It turns out, I only sweat excessively on the days that I wore the Schmidt’s paste. Then I started to realize that it wasn’t so much me sweating, but the paste was actually melting between my underarm. This caused me to stress out and then caused more moisture. Either way, I was getting fed up and decided it was time to switch AGAIN.
Pros: reusable glass container, great ingredients
Cons: product melts under heat, had to reapply
I remembered that the Thai Crystal Deodorant was also available in a spray mist. Since the only real reason I switched from the crystal was because it was starting to smell, I realized I wouldn’t have that problem with the liquified version. I made my way back to the store and bought the spray bottle with no hesitation and I haven’t used anything else since.
Straight from the label:
• OZONE FRIENDLY
• NATURAL PROTECTION
• KILLS ODOR CAUSING BACTERIA
• NO ANIMAL TESTING OR BY-PRODUCTS
• NO PARABENS
• NO PROPYLS
Pros: deodorizes well, great ingredients
Cons: plastic bottle
I HIGHLY recommend this product! If you are new to the natural deodorant world, please know that you will probably definitely smell at first. Your body will need to adapt and that can take time. You and your body are used to applying product that clogs your pores and may or may not stop your pits from sweating entirely, to simply spraying mineral salts on them. You will sweat, but that is what your body needs to do! You should never clog your pores to prevent that. It’s a big change, but you will make it through it. Promise.
Now, the point of me starting this blog was that I wanted to be 100% honest with all of my readers. So, I will say that sometimes this deodorant isn’t powerful enough for me. Some days I sweat more than others. Sometimes I still smell while using it. Some days I don’t even need deodorant at all. The thing is that I’ve come to terms with that and accept that sometimes I’ll muster up a little scent, especially after a long day out in South Florida. I feel that it’s still worth it to support and use a product that’s better overall, even if it means a little BO here and there. You know why? Because it’s nothing a quick touch up can’t fix and because there’s much bigger problems in the world- which brings me to my next point.
As time passes, the more environmentally conscious I become. Our plastic usage is a huge problem and I refuse to continue contributing to it at the rate that I have been all of my life. I’ve done well switching over to a reduce/reuse/recycle lifestyle, but I know that I can always do more. That being said, it felt wrong only promoting deodorant that comes in plastic packaging.
My friend Carly recently ran a #NoWasteNovember campaign on her instagram. She shared a zero-waste deodorant bar made by The Better Soap Company. It’s handmade and made from coconut oil, essential oils, mango butter, shea butter, baking soda, and kokum butter. While I have not yet tried it, I absolutely have it on my radar to try out next because it’s exactly what I’m looking for! Take a look at her post for more info! Also, give her a follow for guaranteed GREAT content! There is a lot to learn from her posts.
Pros: all natural, vegan, handmade, sustainable
You can find many zero-waste options online (etsy, amazon, etc) as well as in store at places like Lush or at a local farmer’s market.
If you haven’t made the switch to a natural deodorant yet, I absolutely encourage you to. It’s one of the first steps I took towards a more conscious life and I don’t regret it one bit. Have any questions or recommendations for me? Please feel free to let me know in the comment section! I’d love to hear from you.