Why you should make your own deodorant and how to do it
|Coconut Oil Deodorant Recipe|
I’ve been making my own deodorant for about 3 months now. It’s the best natural deodorant I’ve ever used, and I think I’ve tried almost all of them! I EVEN USED IT ON MY WEDDING DAY, that's how much faith I had in it. I applied it early in the morning and then forgot about it and was totally non-stinky all day despite a full day of preparation madness, vows, photos, dining and greeting guests. It’s also really, really easy and cheap to make. You only need 4 ingredients:
- coconut oil
- baking soda
- cornstarch or arrowroot starch
- essential oil
I've been using "natural" deodorants for years, but the switch to coconut oil came about when a friend on Facebook asked others what aluminum free deodorants they used, and someone linked up to a homemade coconut oil recipe, and I just had to check it out. I haven’t used another deodorant since!
8 Reasons to Make Your Own Deodorant / Antiperspirant
1. Most antiperspirants and deodorants have aluminum in them. Studies have shown that aluminum can be absorbed into the skin and affects neural matter. This is creepy.
2. Some studies suggest that antiperspirant/deodorant is linked to higher levels of breast cancer. This is scary, and I don’t intend to wait for more conclusive studies.
3. People with renal dysfunction (kidney failure) are at higher risk when using antiperspirant with aluminum. This is dangerous.
4. Most commercial antiperspirants have aluminum in them, and some people are allergic to aluminum. It can cause allergic reactions and rashes. This is uncomfortable.
5. Last month I posted an articleon the importance of checking your cosmetics list of ingredients for allergens that can cause anaphylactic shock and allergic reactions. The more cosmetics you make yourself, the less likely you are to die of a hidden ingredient. Just sayin’.
6. It’s cheap! You probably already have most of the ingredients kicking around your kitchen. If you don’t, a small investment will provide you with enough ingredients to last you like a year. All of the ingredients can be used for other things, so it’s totally worth getting them.
7. Antiperspirants leave yellow stains on clothes that are really hard to wash out. While sweat might still stain, it is much easier to wash out.
8. Personally, I dislike the smell of most commercial deodorants. They leave a weird film on the skin, and a funky smell on your clothes. You know that can’t be right. Trust your gut here folks.
VS OTHER NATURAL DEODORANTS:
Over the years I’ve tried everything from the old school Crystal to Tom’s of Maine to Herbal Magic. Several of these resulted in a sort of “eau de hippie” scent (some of them even came right out of the tube smelling like that!).
This is fine if you don’t mind smelling like you’ve been living in a tree and peeing in a jar for the last few months.
Not that I don’t respect those of you out there who actually do that type of thing in the name of saving our old growth forests. If that’s your case it’s totally ok for you to smell that way. Wear it and be proud of it. Heck, wear a sign that TELLS us you’ve just crawled out from under a logging truck after laying in front of it for days in protest and reap the accolades.
But back to your homemade deodorant; Coconut oil deodorant has whatever scent you chose for it, since you add essential oils in to it, so you can choose anything from peppermint to grapefruit to pine tree to whatever tickles your nose buds.
CAN A HOMEMADE DEODORANT REALLY WORK?
Yes. It makes more sense than a commercial one for several reasons.
- Coconut oil is good for your skin, it acts as a moisturizer, and has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. Fungus and bacteria cause body odor. Eliminate fungus and bacteria, help eliminate odor. Make sense?
- Baking soda absorbs odors.
- The cornstarch or arrowroot powder absorbs wetness.
So here it is!
- 2.5 Tablespoons unrefined coconut oil, melted (I’m lovin’ Dr. Bronner’s Fair Trade oil right now, it smells heavenly and imparts the most coconut flavour I’ve found in a coconut oil so far, leaving my baked goods and stir fries with a mouth-watering flavour)
- 2 Tablespoons baking soda
- 2 Tablespoons cornstarch OR arrowroot powder*
- 10 drops essential oil (optional, but it will smell nicer this way)**
Mix all your ingredients together in a small container. Allow to firm up. To use, scoop out a dime size amount, divide and rub into skin.
Storage of your deodorant will depend on your room temperature. I keep this in a glass jar, with a small amount in an old pill case for traveling, or popping in my purse in lieu of deodorant when I’m going out all day. I've also seen blog posts where people shape them in muffin tins, or candy molds, then keep refrigerated and use them as a roll on.
Depending on your room temperature you’ll need to refrigerate this or just leave it out.
In the summer, I had to keep this in the fridge, and remove first thing in the morning to soften a bit (or run under warm water, place in a pot of warm water to melt, or microwave for about 10 seconds). Now that it’s cooling off, I can leave it out on the counter and it’s the perfect consistency. You don’t want it melting, or else it will separate and all the oil will be on top.
* Cornstarch may be irritating for some people, especially if you’re allergic to corn. Arrowroot starch is a good alternative, and less abrasive.
**The type of essential oil you use depends on preference, but some have a stronger scent and anti-bacterial properties than others. For example, lavender, lemon, peppermint and grapefruit are nice scents that will fight odor.
DO YOU MAKE ANY OF YOUR COSMETICS AT HOME? IF SO, PLEASE SHARE BELOW, OR LINK TO YOUR BLOG ARTICLES!
 "Antiperspirant Drug Products For Over-the-Counter Human Use; Final Monograph". U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
 Exley C, Charles LM, Barr L, Martin C, Polwart A, Darbre PD (September 2007). "Aluminium in human breast tissue". Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry 101 (9): 1344–6. doi:10.1016/j.jinorgbio.2007.06.005. PMID 17629949.
 Antiperspirant Drug Products For Over-the-Counter Human Use; Final Monograph". U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
 Garg S, Loghdey S, Gawkrodger DJ (January 2010). "Allergic contact dermatitis from aluminium in deodorants". Contact Dermatitis 62 (1). doi:10.1111/j.1600-0536.2009.01663.x.
*Inspired by a post by the Ex-Consumer
This post appears on the following great sites: Monday Mania, Make Your Own!, Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways, Eat Make Grow, Simple Lives Thursdays, Farm Girl Blog Fest, Fresh Bites Fridays,