Most of us cannot live without deodorant, as sweating is part of a normal body function. Our perspiration is largely odorless until it is fermented by bacteria that thrive in hot, humid environments, and chances are that you’ve experienced body odor at some point. For many years people applied deodorant daily without question, but most commercial deodorants are made with toxic ingredients such as aluminum and parabens. Some people are allergic to aluminum and may experience skin irritation when exposed to this substance. But parabens are even more dangerous.
These are synthetic preservatives and the main concern is that these chemicals can disrupt our hormonal balance as they mimic the activity of estrogen in the body’s cells. The good news is that you can easily overcome this issue by making your own effective deodorant with just a few completely natural ingredients. It is inexpensive, safe and natural alternative to the harsh and irritating chemicals found in commercial deodorants. So if you’ve hesitated to make your own deodorant,then maybe it’s time to give this recipe a try.
Below you will find the ingredients and their role in this natural deodorant:
Coconut oil has antiseptic benefits due to its medium-chain fatty acid called lauric acid. It also nourishes and moisturizes the skin. For internal consumption I’ve recommended in my previous article about the health benefits of coconut oil to consume the unrefined version as it is richer in phytonutrients than refined coconut oil and some of them are damaged in the process used to produce refined coconut oil. However when it comes to topical application like here, SFGate website mentions that both refined and unrefined coconut oil contain the same amount of lauric acid fatty-acid, so if you don’t like the smell of unrefined coconut oil, you can choose the refined version.
Baking soda is a natural deodorizer. It kills the bacteria that causes body odors, so it can be effectively used to your underarms. Baking soda can irritate the skin of some people, so if you are among these people, you can decrease the amount of baking soda by 1 tablespoon and add instead more arrowroot powder. Also if you have a sensitive skin, don’t apply the deodorant straight after shaving, or apply aloe vera gel before applying the deodorant. You can find more uses for baking soda as a kitchen medicine here.
Arrowroot is a starch extracted from the rhizomes of the arrowroot plant. Many recipes use arrowroot powder or cornstarch powder which absorbs moisture. The better option is arrowroot powder. It is gentler on the skin, and even better – you don’t have to worry about GMO as almost all cornstarch is made from corn that has been genetically modified. You can buy arrowroot powder in your local health food store or online.
Adding a few drops of tea tree oil is a good option as it has antiseptic properties, but you can easily change the scent of your deodorant by using other essential oils such as lavender which also has anti-bacterial properties, or rose, eucalyptus, sandalwood, sweet orange, ylang-ylang, patchouli, chamomile which soothes the skin, and others. Start with just a few drops and add a little bit more until your deodorant has the scent you want. Be aware that essential oils can cause irritation for some people so make a small batch to make sure your skin doesn’t react.
Coconut Oil Deodorant
Mix the baking soda and arrowroot powder together in a bowl. Add the coconut oil and mash it with a fork or a spoon until well mixed. The texture should be firm but pliable so you are able to easily apply it, so you can add more coconut oil or arrowroot powder to achieve your desired consistency. Then add the essential oils if you want. Store the mixture in a small glass jar and apply a small amount with your fingers into your underarms. Coconut oil begins to melt at 76 F (25 C), so if the weather is warm, store your deodorant in the refrigerator.