Respect your Armpits – with Updates, y’all!

Today, I am writing on the subject of making natural homemade deodorant. I have seen many pins on the subject and have wanted to do this for some time. I looked for a while and finally found arrowroot powder in my small town (which is just starch, people).

My reasons for seeking an alternative deodorant which doesn’t use aluminum in any form is that aluminum is linked to dementia (or Alzheimer’s) and cancer in many studies. You may disagree, but both of those run in my family and I think if you can dodge a bullet, you should do your best. My dad even tries to avoid aluminum, he drinks beer only out of bottles these days.

Back to the actual making of this wonder salve for ye olde stanky pits. I initially used three ingredients. Most of ya have them in your kitchen.


Here are the ratios, adjust them to your preference. Some people like it a little softer and more malleable, some people want that solid deodorant stick feeling. Do what you want!

  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder – some recipes say corn starch is just as good. Not cornmeal..I checked.
  • 6 Tablespoons coconut oil – I heated mine as its still cold here in Missouri and I figured it was easier to mix.

I just poured them all into a bowl, mixed them a bit to get the lumps out and voila…deodorant. That was so very easy and fast! I should have stopped there. But I couldn’t. It had no smell!

I get out my essential oils and like a mad scientist start putting a dab of this and that in there to give me that Teen Spirit smell from middle school. Well, that never happened but the final result smelled refreshing. I ended up splashing a little tea tree oil (which is super anti-fungal and everything), a little eucalyptus oil, some lavender, and finally about 8 drops of lemongrass oil. It smelled great! I even had an empty, used eye makeup remover container that was the perfect size for my first homemade deodorant. I plan to just take a little pea sized amount and rub it on each underarm. Here’s the final product:20140328-215221.jpg

Now, I had already put on some Tom’s Natural Deoderant an hour or so earlier, but I couldn’t help but take my fresh new batch on it’s maiden voyage! I rubbed a bit on each underarm enjoying the scent and went on my way cleaning up the kitchen.

And then the burning started. One recipe had mentioned a bit of minor burning initially that went away. Ok, no worries. Better than dementia, right? I ignore it and carry on.

Oh God, the burning. Ok at this point im walking around in a tank top with my arms up thinking I can cool down the burning. It’s bad…I can’t ignore it. When something as tender and sensitive as your underarms is on fire, it becomes a crisis. I tried wiping it off with a damp washcloth, which helped but the sting continued a good 5 minutes. Also, red blotchy armpits…not pretty.

So what went awry in my quest for good smellin, aluminum free underarms? Could be a couple of things. First some people are sensitive to baking soda. Secondly, I may have used too much essential oil, which can be really harsh when not diluted. I should have measured better but I couldn’t find my pipet thing. I also am developing allergies in my old age. Every time I swim at the gym, I have an allergic reaction to the chlorine. Maybe I’m allergic to something?  I will try a few things to troubleshoot and post updates.

For now, the moral of the story is respect your ‘pits and don’t go slapping random crap from around the house on there without thinking it through.

UPDATE: The homemade deodorant had solidified overnight and so while my coffee brewed this morning, I took a pinch and…holding my breath against the agony…put some under each arm. It didn’t hurt. Weird. No burning. Nothing. Maybe having it be a solid changed something about it. I was also cautious this go round to only apply the deodorant where I shave my underarms, as the sensitive skin that was very red was kind of behind that. I think that was the problem the first time, was putting it on in a haphazard manner.

2nd UPDATE: Worked outside in the yard all weekend using only this deoderant and never had a problem. Seems to honestly work better than Degree or Secret! Yay, right??


1 thought on “Respect your Armpits – with Updates, y’all!

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