Just like nearly any other young adult, I was once an antiperspirant consumer. Month after month, I’d buy a new tube of it, hoping the next brand or formula was better (and less expensive) than the last one.
Then, I became pregnant. What was once rare, minor irritation became my worst nightmare.
After giving birth, the problems only worsened.
Antiperspirant was already a product I did not want in my life, but like millions of others, I felt as if I had no choice. There are many concerns regarding aluminum in so many different consumer products, but I still continued to purchase antiperspirant in order to prevent odors.
I knew that homemade deodorants existed, and I knew that premade natural deodorants existed; did I trust them to protect me from natural odors? Absolutely not.
Truthfully, I should have done my research sooner.
I should have experimented with Lavender and baking soda deodorants earlier.
I really, really should have tried my hand at the DIY formulas when I learned about the concerns of antiperspirants, rather than sitting there skeptical.
Now, here we are today: I’m telling my story, and you’re reading in complete curiosity- perhaps you’ve already considered this alternative, and you’re just not sure of it yet..
If you gave it just one month (long enough for your body’s natural balance of bacteria to restore itself), you would be floored with the results of baking soda based deodorant.
#1: It’s Non-Toxic, Aluminum-Free, and Made Mostly of Edible Ingredients!
This wasn’t my primary reason for switching; but it was a close second, and is the first reason for many people.
With a toddler in the home, the fewer toxic items I have, the better. It also makes me feel much better that my deodorant is aluminum free. Sure, aluminum is responsible for preventing sweat; but as much work as I do outside, I’m sweating bullets from every other pore. Sweating isn’t an issue. However, sweating feeds bacteria; these microorganisms are the culprits behind odor. The more you sweat, the more you stink. The idea behind antiperspirant deodorant is to keep the area from sweating, while masking any other potential odor with aromatic deodorant. Plugging your pores with aluminum was never an appealing thought for me, so I’m glad that this ingredient no longer comes into contact with my body on a daily basis.
With the deodorant recipe I use, most of the ingredients are edible: arrowroot powder, baking soda, coconut oil…. The essential oil isn’t exactly something you want to leisurely sip on though (nor should you, please don’t drink essential oils); which is why I said “most.” My deodorant is a simple recipe of just 4 base ingredients- it’s easy, it’s clean, and it works. The baking soda prevents and eliminates odor, while certain essential oils actually keep them at bay. The arrowroot powder helps with moisture. You can see the deodorant that I make here:
#2: It’s So Incredibly Cheap!
I was absolutely giddy when I realized how cheap it was to make my own deodorant. I made my first batch months ago, and I am barely halfway through an 8 oz Mason Jar. With my initial costs (Like $13, excluding essential oils since they’re always on hand here and I use a very minuscule amount), I could probably make enough deodorant to last me for 5 years. That’s an insane savings from antiperspirant, which was likely running me over $60 per year.
Now, if you multiply that by an entire family? That’s a massively frugal switch!
#3 Irritation Has Been Significantly Reduced
Before, I just never knew when I would finally have a reaction to a new tube of antiperspirant. Some would work fine for months before turning against me; others would have me begging for mercy within 2 days. No matter what, eventually, they all would cause varying symptoms, potentially including: redness, irritation, burning or stinging, welts, rashes, and more.
I will say that I get irritations from this homemade deodorant as well, but I think 85% of that is user error and is preventable. Now, what do I mean by this? Well, you have to be careful when applying this stuff. You only need very little, but I tend to over apply some days by accident. When you over apply, the baking soda can irritate the skin because it is abrasive. I combat this by trying to apply it a tiny bit at a time (adding more as needed), and by alternating another wonderful baking soda-free deodorant when my skin is healing from irritation. I have a few other natural deodorants that I have for this purpose, and I enjoy using these deodorants on days that I don’t plan to do much work outside of the home. I’d much rather have irritation from abrasion than chemical irritation or chemical burns, which is what I was getting from antiperspirant.
#4 No Stinky Repercussion! None, Nada, Zip!
When I tell you this stuff works, I mean it.
There is absolutely no body odor, and I’ve put homemade deodorant through all kinds of tests this year. So far, I can tell you:
- It holds up to a blistering, humid, can’t-breathe-to-save-my-life type of heat. I will be pouring sweat, and still won’t stink!
- It survived extended water exposure at the beach, proving that the waves are no match (as if the constant sweating wasn’t enough of a test).
- It made it through a day of coop building, right in the middle of this hot summer heat.
On the flip side, it has another wonderful trait: It does wash off well with soap and water. It used to drive me insane trying to get antiperspirant off of my body when I showered; it never seemed to want to come off! That’s not the case with homemade deodorant.
My Final Thoughts
In the end, I’m so happy that I made the switch. I feel less concerned, I feel protected, and I feel like I’ve made a step in the right direction as far as health, self sufficiency, and frugality are concerned. It is one of my favorite “small” victories this year. As the years go by, I will continue to replace more and more of these products in our household. Until then, I’m over the moon with this one switch!
At Three Wondrous Acres, Krystal and her family are focused on raising pure, natural food for the homestead table. The “simple life” has unfortunately been forgotten by many; they want to offer their children this fulfilling life, providing them with a rich, exciting childhood full of fresh vegetables, fun harvests from their own gardens, freshly laid eggs, baby animals, and construction projects galore. Along the way, all sorts of fun experiences, lessons learned, recipes, preservation tips, gardening hacks, livestock management ideas, and more are shared to the Three Wondrous Acres Homestead blog at: http://wondrousacreshomestead.website/