What is the best natural deodorant?
I remember the first natural deodorant I ever tried. I think it was clear, like a sticky bar of glycerin soap. It made my skin feel gooey and at the end of the day I could definitely tell – wait, this stuff doesn’t work.
“Wait…. this stuff doesn’t work.”
And thus, natural deodorant had a very poor reputation in those early days – and for good reason. If it was working for you, you probably didn’t need deodorant all that much.
I tried the crystal deodorants next. I mean, who doesn’t want to rub “crystals” all over your armpits, right? But I wasn’t a huge fan of those either.
Wait, why should I use Natural Deodorant?
After some googling, I found this to be a pretty good explanation for one reason why traditional aluminum-containing deodorant may want to be avoided..
“Aluminum-based compounds are used as the active ingredient in antiperspirants. These compounds form a temporary “plug” within the sweat duct that stops the flow of sweat to the skin’s surface. Some research suggests that aluminum-containing underarm antiperspirants, which are applied frequently and left on the skin near the breast, may be absorbed by the skin and have estrogen-like (hormonal) effects. Because estrogen can promote the growth of breast cancer cells, some scientists have suggested that the aluminum-based compounds in antiperspirants may contribute to the development of breast cancer. In addition, it has been suggested that aluminum may have direct activity in breast tissue.”
…this article goes on to say that “no studies to date have confirmed any substantial adverse effects of aluminum that could contribute to increased breast cancer risks.” I’m not a scientist, so I don’t know the most up-to-date research. Penn Medacine tries to tackle the myths vs. reality question as well. Also citing ‘mixed and inconclusive’ studies is another myth-busting article from Mental Floss. I was actually finding it challenging to find PRO-natural deodorant references! Then this article in Time brought me back on track to some of my views on the need for natural deodorant…
“Over 50% of breast cancers start in the upper outer quadrant of the breast local to the underarm region,” Darbre says. While that’s not proof aluminum is to blame, breast cancer incidence tends to align with use of products that contain the metal. Especially if you shave under your arms, applying a product containing aluminum to that broken skin could be bad news, Darbre says.”
Natural Deodorant for me, thanks
So yeah, I am 100% on team natural deodorant. While I still use ‘traditional’ aluminum-containing deodorant from time to time (when in a bind or just feel like I really really need something super strong for an event) I definitely use my fave natural version on a daily basis. These days, I seek out brands that are using plants instead of chemicals – essential oils instead of chemical fragrances and on and on.
Natural Deodorant: Revival.
Let’s try this again…
I’m not sure when exactly, but suddenly natural deodorant had a revival sort of moment. Along with everything in the clean beauty category. People were hungry for chemical-free, more plant-based options for their skin care, makeup and yes – deodorant.
The first one that kinda worked..
I think the first natural deodorant that I ever tried that kinda worked, was Primal Paste. But you had to apply it by scooping up a clump of this hard, waxy gunk and rubbing it into your armpits. Uh, no thanks. I just couldn’t get into it.
Note: These days Primal Paste comes in a variety of non-scooping options. So definitely check it out if you are curious about them. I know people who rave about PP.
My compromise for a long time..
So for a long time, I either did no deodorant – days when I wasn’t really going anywhere or doing much that inspired stress or perspiration – and on those busy – ‘I need a good deodorant’ days I went back to my old standbys that I knew would work – Secret Clinical Strength – or whatever I found at the drug store that was a mini travel size because it took me a good year to go through a full-sized product.
Then, once again, I decided to try a few new things on the market. I tried Lavanila. And it’s charcoal-mask product. I didn’t adore their deodorant. But I love, love (and frequently buy) their detox mask. If you feel like you have been extra stressed lately or just have stinky armpits that take you by surprise, try this. I feel like it brings you back to neutral in terms of armpit zen.
The first deodorant I ever really raved about here on the blog was by Milk Makeup. It was simply called, vegan deodorant. It had this tingly warming sensation and for me, it worked! I loved it! But then, for some silly reason, I couldn’t find it anywhere. UPDATE: I did find it on Amazon. Even though I used to always buy it at Sephora. And it’s sold out at a few other places too. Weird.
My Current Favorite Deodorant…
Feeling defeated every time I reached for a new natural deodorant on a store shelf, I gave it one more shot. I tried Schmidt’s. It has a thick, coconut-based, heavy sort of texture. It is pretty opaque white, but it feels good on – and for me – it really works!!
And bonus, the “fragrances” they use are not harsh at all. Like, they are actually really nice. I used to be a 100% fragrance-free kind of girl when it came to deodorant, but Schmidt’s aromas appeal to me.
Natural Deodorant Favorites….
- Schmidt’s Deodorant – any aroma!
- Lavanila Detox Mask
- Urban Cowboy – fave for guys!
Now to be clear, I have not tried every product out there. So here are a few more “best of” lists – and yes, Schmidt’s is on both of them!
A few more options to browse…
Allure’s List of the best Natural Deodorants
NYMag’s List of the Best Natural Deodorants
So now you, please let me know what your fave natural deodorant is!