Roughly once a year, for the past 3 years, I throw out my conventional deodorant and “officially” make the switch to natural deodorant. And it lasts about… 3 days (or until Adam clears his throat and says, “um, babe? You kinda stink.” Even though I’ve known for quite some time that toxins in my trusty tube of antiperspirant were less than ideal, I figured they couldn’t make that much of a difference since I wasn’t ingesting them. Then I read this article in which Dr. Heather Patisaul explains that smearing aluminum and parabens on my underarms could actually be worse:
“When you eat something, it’s broken down by your liver and digestive system… But when you put something on your skin, there are times when it can enter your bloodstream without being metabolized.”
Yikes. That was the tipping point in my becoming fully convinced, and this time not only did I throw out my antiperspirant, I also shared my determination with our audience on Instagram who in turn, shared over 500 recommendations and pieces of advice for successfully making the switch to natural deodorant. I ordered the ones that interested me most, and decided to give them a 30 day test run before reporting back on which one worked best for me. Read on for the winner… as well as some complementary underarm products I’m loving, and the runners-up that I had to include because so many of you guys swear by them.
Y’all, when my friend Jordan told me that she swears by this natural “deodorant” that is actually just salt, I did not believe her. At least, I didn’t believe it could effectively nix my sweat and BO that other very expensive natural deodorants had not conquered. After 30 days of using this and very little else, I am here to say that this is a freaking miracle. This is in no way sponsored (hey, open to it), but I cannot sing its praises highly enough. Not only does the salt naturally prevent the growth of bacteria, it also keeps me dry a la antiperspirant. You basically wet the end of the salt stick and wipe it under your arms while it’s wet. I leave mine on the counter to air dry before putting the lid back on. The price point is an added bonus.
When I started my underarm detoxifying journey, I had the lightbulb idea, “Why doesn’t anyone make deodorant wipes that you can use after working out or whenever you start to get a little stinky?” Well my friends, it turns out Pacifica beat me to the punch. I ordered these wipes as one of my deodorants to test, but when I fell in love with the salt stone listed above, these ended up coming in handy for on-the-go touch ups. Which to be honest, I barely needed… but after a hot yoga class one day and a neighborhood jog another, a little wipe down was in order. These smell like a tropical vacation.
Any conversation around making the transition to natural deodorant will inevitably bring the question rampant among wellness fanatics, “But have you detoxed?” The claim is that aluminum-based antiperspirants, over time, change the type of bacteria in your underarm, and when you try to switch to natural, the imbalance in the bacteria can cause major stink. Using a detoxifying agent can hurry the process along and rebalance your natural bacteria by drawing the toxins from your body.
Most homemade armpit detoxes use a mask of bentonite clay and apple cider vinegar or coconut oil, which can have antibacterial properties. But when many of y’all mentioned this ready-to-go detox mask from cute brand Megababe, it sounded a lot less messy and time-consuming.
I’ve been using it weekly for the past month (on Sunday night when I also face mask), and I like it! The downside is that you have to walk around with a dark mask on your underarms for 20 minutes; the upside is that I have zero body odor and, who knows? Maybe this has helped get me there.
*I’d love to hear in the comments if you’ve made the switch to natural deodorants, and if so: any products you swear by?