3 Natural Deodorant Alternative Recipes - Practical Stewardship (2024)

Natural Deodorant Alternative Recipes

Thrifty Thinking

3 Natural Deodorant Alternative Recipes - Practical Stewardship (1)

Deodorant. We all need it. Everyone sweats at times, and some more than others. I’ll warn you that I will get a little personal here, so don’t read anymore if reading about arm pits makes you uncomfortable, or just look down at the bold-type recipes. I have three deodorant alternatives for you, all of which are naturally effective and economical, costing just pennies!

I am VERY cold most of the time, for those of you who don’t know me. Typically, I wear four layers in the winter, and you usually don’t see my arms uncovered unless it is at least 78 degrees outside. I don’t generally sweat very much, but the one place I do sweat is the pits, probably because they don’t get much breathing room with all my layers and little relief.

All that to say, a couple of summers ago, we discovered another very interesting problem. One of my EARLY elementary kids started having B.O. on a hot day, and he (the generic he) was running around a lot. This was not just a one time occurrence either. It made me start thinking, “This REALLY young person NEEDS deodorant, but who wants to put all those chemicals on a little body?” It just didn’t seem right putting adult deodorant on him.

Anyway, I was reading on some money-saving blog (that I can’t find now) a year and a half ago or so, and guess what? A lady was using baking soda only for deodorant. I have heard of making your own deodorant with different oils and baking soda, but hadn’t done it yet. So I decided to try it on this child. It TOTALLY worked. I was amazed, so the next day I tried it on myself. I just put my fingers under the faucet really quickly and dipped them in my little baby jar container of baking soda and applied it. I was amazed at how well it absorbs sweat, the lack of odor, and the pleasant way my clothes smelled. I used this method for over a year, and my family could still tolerate my presence; it worked great!

I wasn’t doing this to try to save money, because honestly, I have a small stock pile of de-o that I got for usually $.50 or less, and in some cases free. It would be easier just to use a de-o stick, but they don’t always work great for me. But really baking soda is SO incredibly frugal, especially if you get the big bag at Costco, (which may last you a lifetime). I am sure it cost way less than a penny per application.Anyway, I am now singing the praises of baking soda.

If you decide to try it, give it at least 3 weeks. I think it takes a couple of weeks for your body to adjust to it. It may seem a bit grainy at first, but that went away for me after about a week. I don’t notice any graininess anymore…at all. Give it a try; it is amazing! The only negative side for me is that baking soda can be a bit messy in apply it. Do you have any suggestions? I have not found a way to get around that. I also don’t worry about the baking soda getting on my clothes because regular deodorant does that anyway, and it is good in the laundry.

Deodorant Recipe #1:

  • baking soda
  • a damp armpit, or damp fingers to apply

In looking for an alternative to the messy baking soda, my friend was talking about her husband using rubbing alcohol only and how successful it is on him. I decided to give it a try for one week. I found it kills the odor causing bacteria well. The problem for me is that I ended up with wet pits constantly as it doesn’t absorb the sweat. So I love the idea, but I can’t use this alone, though it might work for you.

Deodorant Recipe #2:

  • rubbing alcohol
  • cotton ball or small cloth to apply

After a year of using straight baking soda, I missed the convenience of using a deodorant stick. I finally made my own deodorant stick with coconut oil (you can now find coconut oil at some Walmarts, Costco, and Trader Joe’s), and I love it, overall! It’s such a quick recipe to prepare. The con is that it has a low melting point, so if it’s hotter than 76 degrees, the deodorant turns into goo, and you get a mega mess. It happened to me the first week I made it at the end of our muggy late September/early October days. You can store it in the fridge to prevent the melting though, so learn from my mistake!

Deodorant Recipe #3:

  • 1/3 cup baking soda (other recipes call for 1/4 cup of the dry ingredients, each, but I LOVE the absorbent nature of the baking soda and wanted to use more)
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch (arrowroot powder works, too I hear, but I don’t own it yet and haven’t tried it)
  • 5-6 T coconut oil, slightly melted, enough to mix well like frosting; don’t melt it into a liquid (I melt mine in the microwave)
  • a couple of drops of essential oil, optional (I’ve used tea tree oil and lavender)
  • old deodorant container, or other closed container


  • Mix all three ingredients until you get the desired consistency. You may want to add more oil or dried ingredients depending on the consistency you desire. Since I LOVE baking soda so much, I like using more of it.
  • Pour into the container of your choice (to avoid leakage of the melted coconut oil, you can harden the coconut oil a bit in the fridge before pouring it in the container. Work with it when it’s the consistency of frosting. You can also put a plastic baggie at the bottom of the deodorant container and fill up the bag while it’s in the container).

I usually make a double batch of the Coconut Oil Deodorant and store the remainder in a glass jar. When I need more, I just microwave it for 30 seconds and scoop it into the deodorant container.

In conclusion, I am now doing a mixture of all three during the winter. I wear too many layers in the cold winter months to really let the pits breathe properly, so I think I need a higher concentration of baking soda. In the winter, at night I put on the baking soda after a shower. In the morning, I will use rubbing alcohol and then reapply either the baking soda or Coconut Oil Deodorant. In the months that I don’t wear as many layers, which is typically June-late October, I can solely use the Coconut Oil Deodorant. So whether you want to get away from the aluminum and chemicals of typical deodorant or looking for some thrifty deodorant ideas, you may want to try these.

What are you using? Are you thinking about going more natural with de-o for the b-o? Do you have any other natural deodorant ideas?

Have you made your own…?:

Lemon Astringent

Dishwasher Detergent:

Baby Wipe Solution

3 Natural Deodorant Alternative Recipes - Practical Stewardship (2024)
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