Do you know what’s in your deodorant? I do and it’s not pretty, as a matter of fact, it’s downright dangerous! This is why you should highly consider making your own homemade deodorant.
The primary ingredient used in many commercial antiperspirants is aluminum. Aluminum is used to help block the sweat from escaping the pores. Aluminum has been linked to breast cancer in women and has also been linked to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. 
Several studies have shown a link between increasing antiperspirant use and rising rates of female breast cancer and prostate cancer in men. However, the FDA has not committed to classifying it as a carcinogen. Their position remains one of “wait and see” as more definitive studies are released.
Parabens are a family of synthetic preservatives that are often found in deodorants as well. In fact, parabens are contained in an alarming amount of our body care products. A random sampling of 100 human urine specimens performed by the CDC showed that all 100 contained parabens. This demonstrates the high absorption rate of chemicals we place on our skin. 
The largest concern is that the absorption of these chemicals will disrupt our delicate hormonal balance. This can lead to things like early puberty in children and an increased risk of hormonal cancers. Paraben exposure has also been linked to birth defects and organ toxicity.
Propylene glycol is another common ingredient that is used in antiperspirants and deodorants. This is a petroleum-based material that is used to soften cosmetic products due to its slick consistency. It is a cheap way to make skin care products more easily applicable to the skin.
The argument that propylene glycol is safe in small amounts has been questioned by consumer safety advocates. In large quantities, studies have shown that it can cause damage to the central nervous system, liver, and heart. 
This chemical is even found in many of the processed foods we eat today. Logical thought follows that decreasing our exposure to propylene glycol is the prudent thing to do. It is for this reason that using skin care products that are propylene glycol free is becoming popular in health-conscious circles.
Phthalates are another class of chemicals that are often used in deodorants and antiperspirants that you may want to avoid. Phthalates are used in cosmetics, synthetic fragrances, plastics, body care products and medical goods. They help to dissolve other ingredients and to create better consistency.
The problem with phthalates is that they have been linked to a variety of health issues. High phthalate blood and urine levels in women of childbearing age have been linked to a higher risk of birth defects. This suggests that phthalates may disrupt hormone receptors as well as increase the likelihood of cell mutation. 
Triclosan is another common ingredient included in commercial deodorants. It is utilized as the odor killing part of antiperspirants for its antibacterial properties. It is also commonly used in antibacterial soaps, hand wipes, and gels.
Triclosan is actually classified as a pesticide by the FDA. It is also classified as a probable carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency.  This classification has prompted some companies to remove it from their products. However, it still can be found as an ingredient in some formulas.
Sweet mother of god, it’s a good thing I don’t use store bought deodorant or antiperspirants and you shouldn’t either! Make your own this recipe is easy to make, inexpensive and works just as good (or better than) commercial brands.
Homemade Deodorant Recipe
- 1/3 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
- essential oils (optional, but you could use tea tree oil, sweet orange, cinnamon, etc.)
1. Mix baking soda and arrowroot powder in a bowl.
2. Add coconut oil and use a fork to blend into the dry ingredients.
3. Add 5-10 drops of your chosen essential oil (I used tea tree oil).
4. Add more coconut oil or baking soda to achieve your desired consistency.
5. Now you’re all-natural deodorant!
6. To apply, use your fingers to scoop out a pea-size amount of the deodorant and massage it into your armpits daily or as needed. Allow a minute or two for the deodorant to set before getting dressed.
*Remember, this is deodorant, not an antiperspirant. It will not stop you from sweating, but you won’t smell bad!
(Recipe adapted from The Prairie Homestead)
Are you looking for some of the products in this recipe? This is where I buy coconut oil.
Check out this video by Ela Gale for an easy, all-natural Deodorant Stick recipe!