Health/Natural beauty Recipes

A Simple, All-Natural Deodorant

by Amy
When I told my best friends recently that I haven’t bought deodorant in the last year, they looked a bit concerned, like they wanted to step closer and sniff me, like they wanted to rush me to the store.About a year ago I started making my own deodorant.  I did it for a variety of reasons, not least among them that I always felt like I was rubbing cancer into my breasts when I put deodorant under my arms.  (My brain may be a bit of a conspiracy theorist — studies have shown no correlation between using deodorants/antiperspirants and getting cancer. Of course, other studies have shown conflicting results, so I guess the jury’s still out.)But there are always good reasons to make your own health and beauty products, if you have the time and inclination.  For example, for the last year I’ve been using the same plastic container for my deodorant, meaning I’ve contributed less trash to the landfills.  I’ve become more aware of and intentional about what products are going on to my skin, the largest organ of my body.  I’ve found a way to be a creator, rather than a consumer, in one small part of my life.But, while people are sometimes interested in the reasons behind my choice, what they really want to know is: Does it work?

It absolutely does. My husband and I have both worn it through four seasons now, and we love it.Here are the disclaimers: It’s a deodorant, not an antiperspirant.  So we do sweat.  And there was a week or so of transition time at the beginning when (for me, not for him) the deodorant made me a little itchy.  (I think it was a reaction to corn starch, which could be replaced with arrowroot powder if you are sensitive to it.)The process is very simple, and can be completed in ten minutes.  Really the only complicating factor is getting your ingredients together – I had to order a few things online, but now I have them in stock and can make up a batch whenever I need to. For beeswax pellets and essential oils, I ordered through From Nature With Love.
My Favorite Deodorant (adapted lightly from Keeper of the Home)

The Ingredients

Makes enough for one deodorant container.

  • 1/8 cup cornstarch
  • 1/8 cup baking soda
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 heaped Tbsp. beeswax (I use the pellets, which are easy for measuring and melt down quickly)
  • 8 drops tea tree essential oil
  • Very small amounts of other essential oils for scent purposes (optional- you can use up to another 8-10 drops) One of my favorites is Lavender Chamomile.


Melt all ingredients together over low heat, stirring until smooth and combined.  Pour into an empty deodorant container (I re-used an old Tom’s canister).  Let cool.  And that’s it!

Amy's deo
Depending on the season, your deodorant may be slightly softer than conventional deodorant sticks. In the summer, I sometimes store mine in the fridge.
Do you make your own deodorant?  What’s your recipe?
 Amy teaches ESL Writing and American Pop Culture at Taylor University. She and her husband, Jack, met while teaching English in Southeast Asia.  After three years living in international community in Seattle, they settled in rural Indiana with their two little children. Amy loves dabbling in gardening and composting, baking sweet things, repurposing through sewing, and making all kinds of things from scratch. She also blogs at Making All Things New and for Christ and Pop Culture.
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9 thoughts on “A Simple, All-Natural Deodorant

  1. Love this. Thanks for sharing. I feel the same way about rubbing cancer into my armpits – why take the risk if you don’t have to? I planned on making my own deodorant after struggling to find a store-bought deodorant that I liked that was effective, sustainable, and cruelty free. Before I had a chance to make it, though, I discovered Thai crystals, which are basically blocks of mineral salts that you wet and rub into your armpits. I’ve been using my Thai crystal since August and have found it to be really effective. Have you ever used anything like this? I’d be interested to know how it compares to the homemade version.

  2. Pingback: A Renew Review | Renew and Sustain

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