Sunday, March 15, 2015

How to Make Your Own All-Natural Deodorant

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Over the past few years, one product after the next, my beauty cabinet has been slowly transforming from store-bought to all-natural, (almost) all handmade. But there's one product on my shelf that I've been resistant to switching up: antiperspirant/deodorant. 

I've dabbled in all-natural deodorant here and there in the past, but I'll admit that more recently I've relied mainly on store-bought antiperspirant. Yes, the kind that's loaded with harmful chemicals and heavy metals. I know it's bad for me -- I'm of the belief that pretty much anything that prevents your body from performing a natural function is -- but I could never find a natural, store-bought deodorant that didn't leave me feeling, well... smelling like a nightmare. But lately I've noticed something, even my trusty antiperspirant hasn't been working that great, and even made me sweat more at times, maybe it's a sign? Determined to find a solution, I decided it was time to just make my own, but a lot of the recipes I found simply weren't that portable and many used coconut oil, a product that I certainly love, but don't want to risk staining my clothes with. 

My solution? The recipe below. These bars are all-natural, easily customizable, highly portable, and most importantly leave my underarms feeling great. Plus they're full of healthy ingredients, such as bacteria-fighting tea tree oil, moisturizing shea butter, toxin-zapping bentonite clay, and odor-fighting baking soda. Whip up a bar or two for yourself, and be sure to let me know what you think! I've been 
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All-Natural Deodorant Bars 


4 tbsp shea butter

1.5 tbsp beeswax

1 tbsp cocoa butter

2 tbsp bentonite clay

1 tbsp baking soda

10-20 drops tea tree oil

10 drops lavender essential oil (or other favorite oil)

Soap mold

Glass bowl or jar (microwave/heat safe)
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Combine the shea butter, beeswax, and cocoa butter in the glass bowl or jar. To melt it down, you can either place it in the microwave for 1-3 minutes or, if using a jar, create a double boiler on the stove top by nesting the jar in a pot that has been partially filled with water. Heat until oils are melted and fully dissolved. Add the tea tree oil and your essential oil of choice and mix.
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In a separate dish, mix together the baking soda and bentonite clay, then pour into the oil mixture and stir until combined.
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Pour the liquid into the soap mold. You can use any shape you like - I chose a rectangle so I could easily store the bar in a travel soap box and toss it in my gym bag. Allow to cool completely before popping it out of the mold.
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Store in a cool, dark place. This shouldn't melt too easily, but it does get soft in higher temperatures. For now it's fine in my medicine cabinet, but when the summer heat strikes, I'll be sticking this in the fridge. I wrapped my bars in brown paper to create a little sleeve to hold them with.

Recipe notes:
+ Bentonite clay can irritate sensitive skin. If you've never used it before, do a patch test on the inside of your arm by mixing a dab of clay with a few drops of water and applying. If it doesn't irritate your skin, you should be good to go!

+ If you're sensitive to bentonite clay, try substituting arrowroot powder.

+ You can also pour this into a recycled deodorant container. Simply allow the oil and clay mixture to cool until it's soft, but not completely liquefied, then pour into a clean, dry plastic deodorant container and allow to cool completely.
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This post was previously published on BLDG 25 as part of my full time work. See all my writing here.

A couple of notes because people have asked:
* No, there's no dye in these. The brand of bentonite clay I used is what turned the bars slightly green.

* There is no alternative to the beeswax, it's what binds the bars and keeps them in their form. If you're vegan and don't want to use the beeswax, you can still make these though! Just omit the wax and pour the mixture into a sealable, portable jar. Apply a light layer with fingertips.

* These will not make you stop sweating, but they will kill the bacteria that causes the stank smell of sweat. Antiperspirant is the only thing that will make you stop sweating, and there is no natural alternative the the aluminum and heavy metals in antiperspirant.


Jeanne said...

Very cool DIY!

Robyn Proctor Hinkle said...

Wow, this is neat. I'll have to pass this along to my mother-in-law!

Melissa at said...

Deodorant is one product with which I've also had trouble when it comes to making the switch to natural. I can't wait to try this!

Nikki Williams said...

these are so cute!

xx nikki

The Girl who Loved to Write said...

Definitely going to try this!

Coco said...

Great tutorial!


Jennifer Rakowitz said...

Love this recipe!! Of all the store bought and recipes we have tried for all natural deodorant this one is by far the best. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

I will have to try your recipe! Thanks for posting. BTW - do you know anything about Lavilin? Saw some nice reviews on Amazon, I was thinking about trying it out as well.

Orchid Grey said...

Jennifer - that's awesome, so glad you like the recipe!

Anon - I've used LaVanila in the past and I do think it works, the reason I don't use it now though is because of the smell - it's SO strong and I don't like to wear anything that competes with the oil perfume I wear. It's a good product but the scent is too much for me.

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