In the quest for a healthier lifestyle, many people are turning to natural alternatives for their daily routines. One such change is the switch from traditional deodorants to natural deodorant substitutes. But do these household ingredients really work as a deodorant substitute? Let’s find out.
Why Choose a Deodorant Substitute?
Aluminum salts, such as aluminum chlorohydrate and aluminum zirconium, are active ingredients in antiperspirants. They work by forming temporary plugs in the sweat ducts, reducing wetness and, in turn, body odor.
These compounds are different from those found in deodorants, which do not contain aluminum salts and instead focus on masking or neutralizing body odor.
Debunking The Myths: Aluminum Salts & Health Concerns
There are several reasons why people choose deodorant substitutes. Some are concerned about the potential health risks associated with traditional deodorants, such as the presence of aluminum, parabens, and other chemicals.
Others may have sensitive skin that gets irritated by the ingredients in regular deodorants. Additionally, some people may find that traditional deodorants leave unwanted residue on their clothes.
However, it’s important to note that while there are concerns and rumors about the potential health risks of traditional deodorants, there is no definitive evidence that they are harmful.
Benefits & Downsides Of Traditional Deodorants
Traditional deodorants and antiperspirants are a staple in personal hygiene due to their effectiveness in blocking sweat and controlling bad underarm odor. They are available in various scents and strengths, catering to a wide range of preferences, and are generally affordable.
However, concerns have been raised about the potential health risks associated with the chemicals found in traditional antiperspirants. Ingredients such as aluminum and parabens have been under scrutiny for their possible links to health issues like hormonal imbalances and cancer. These substances can be absorbed and stored in fat cells, which are abundant in the underarm area.
Despite these concerns, it’s important to note that there is no definitive evidence proving these risks. Studies have not conclusively linked the use of traditional hygiene products with serious health problems, and experts maintain that they are safe for use.
The FDA and other health authorities have not found evidence showing that the parabens used in cosmetic products, such as deodorants, cause breast cancer or other diseases. Moreover, the claims that aluminum in antiperspirants is linked to Alzheimer’s disease or breast cancer have not been substantiated by clear evidence.
Benefits & Downsides Of Natural Deodorant Substitutes
Natural deodorants are designed to reduce body odor using organic or plant-based ingredients. They do not block perspiration, allowing your sweat to flow freely, which is a natural and necessary function of your body. They are less likely to cause skin issues and may even help your health. Many natural deodorants also align with environmental values, as many are packaged in recyclable containers.
Related: Top 10 Best Natural Deodorants
However, deodorant substitutes may not have the same powerful odor-stopping strength as chemical formulations. They may also contain ingredients that can irritate the skin.
Furthermore, while they may contain ingredients designed to absorb sweat, only aluminum is effective in preventing it, so expect to be sweatier than you would be with an aluminum-based product. If you’re looking for something that will stop sweat dead in its tracks, household ingredients won’t cut it…so check out SweatBlock’s Max Clinical Antiperspirant Body Wipes.
Now let’s talk about some deodorant substitutes.
Household Ingredients As Deodorant Substitutes
Let’s explore some common household ingredients that can be used as a deodorant substitute and how to use them.
Witch hazel is a natural astringent that can help remove excess moisture and kill odor-causing bacteria. To use it as a deodorant substitute, simply apply it to your armpits using a cotton ball.
Baking Soda Or Cornstarch
Baking soda and cornstarch can absorb sweat and neutralize body odor. To use, mix one part baking soda with six parts cornstarch, then apply the mixture to your armpits.
Lemon juice contains citric acid, which can kill bacteria and provide a fresh scent. However, it can irritate sensitive skin, so it’s best to test it on a small area first. To use, apply a small amount of lemon juice to your armpits using a cotton ball.
Rubbing alcohol kills bacteria, including the odor-causing kind. It’s also a significantly cheaper deodorant substitute when compared to mainstream products. To use, fill a spray bottle with rubbing alcohol and spritz onto your armpits.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has antibacterial properties that can help kill odor-causing bacteria. To use, apply it to your armpits using a cotton ball. However, be aware that it may leave a vinegar smell.
Coconut oil has naturally antibacterial properties that can help eliminate odor-causing bacteria. To use, simply apply a small amount to your armpits.
Baking Soda & Coconut Oil
A mixture of baking soda and coconut oil can be an effective deodorant substitute. To use, mix one part baking soda with five parts coconut oil to form a thick paste, then apply to your armpits.
Crystal deodorant is a popular deodorant alternative that can prevent odor without blocking sweat. To use, simply wet the crystal and apply it to your armpits.
Sweat-proof undershirts are designed to block underarm sweat marks and yellow stains. They are available for both men and women and can be worn under any dress shirt or t-shirt. While this isn’t exactly a deodorant substitute, these undershirts add an extra layer of sweat and odor protection.
Essential oils like tea tree oil, lavender oil, and lemon oil have antibacterial properties that can help kill the bacteria causing body odor. They can be applied directly to the skin or used in a diffuser. Other effective essential oils include peppermint, eucalyptus, grapefruit, bergamot, and oregano.
Hand sanitizer can be used as a quick-fix deodorant substitute. It’s alcohol based and designed to kill bacteria and germs, which are the cause of armpit odor. However, it should not be used daily as a deodorant substitute due to potential skin sensitivity and inflammation.
Hand Soap & Water
Using a good antibacterial soap can help eliminate armpit odor. The key is to tackle the bacteria, which means using an antibacterial agent under your arms. It’s recommended to lather the soap on for at least 30 seconds to ensure all odor-causing bacteria are removed.
Recipes For DIY Natural Deodorant Alternatives
1. Coconut Oil & Shea Butter Deodorant
This recipe combines the antibacterial properties of coconut oil and the moisturizing benefits of shea butter. Here’s how to make it:
- Melt 2 1/2 tablespoons each of unrefined coconut oil and shea butter in a glass bowl
- Mix in 1/4 cup of arrowroot starch or flour and 1 1/2 tablespoons of baking soda
- Add 6 drops each of lavender and grapefruit essential oils, and optionally, a drop of tea tree essential oil
- Pour the mixture into a small glass jar and let it cool
2. Baking Soda & Arrowroot Powder Deodorant
This recipe is a simple yet effective deodorant substitute:
- Combine 1/4 cup of coconut oil, 3 tablespoons of baking soda, and 1/4 cup of arrowroot powder
- Add a drop of tea tree oil for its antibacterial properties
- Mix the ingredients until they form a smooth paste and store in a small jar
3. Shea Butter, Coconut Oil, Arrowroot, & Baking Soda Deodorant
This zero-waste, natural, and vegan deodorant recipe is a favorite for many:
- Melt a base of shea butter and coconut oil
- Mix in arrowroot powder and baking soda
- Add your preferred essential oils and pour the mixture into a container
- Let it sit for about 1 hour in the refrigerator
Related: How To Make Natural Deodorant
Yes, hand sanitizer can be used as a quick-fix deodorant substitute as it kills bacteria and germs, which are the cause of armpit odor. However, it should not be used daily as a deodorant substitute due to potential skin sensitivity and inflammation.
Yes, essential oils like tea tree oil, lavender oil, and lemon oil have antibacterial properties that can help kill the bacteria-causing body odor. They can be applied directly to the skin or used in a diffuser.
Yes, using a good antibacterial soap can help eliminate armpit odor. The key is to tackle the bacteria, which means using an antibacterial agent under your arms. It’s recommended to lather the soap on for at least 30 seconds to ensure all odor-causing bacteria are removed.
While these alternatives can be effective, they may not provide the same level of protection as traditional deodorants. Additionally, some people may experience skin sensitivity or irritation when using hand sanitizer or certain essential oils.
If you have sensitive skin, it’s recommended to do a patch test before using any new product or alternative. This can help you determine if you’ll have an adverse reaction.
So…What Should You Do?
While household ingredients can serve as deodorant substitutes, their effectiveness may vary from person to person. It’s also important to remember that what works for one person may not work for another. Therefore, it’s worth experimenting with different ingredients to find what works best for you.
However, if you’re looking for a more reliable and effective solution, consider using regular antiperspirants and deodorants. These tried-and-true products are specifically designed to combat sweat and odor, are safe to use, and they come in a variety of scents and strengths to suit your needs.
If you’re looking for a clinical-strength formulation for everyday use, try the Clinical Strength Deodorant Antiperspirant that works for up to 48 hours.
If you’re looking for something EVEN STRONGER, you’ll need the Max Clinical Antiperspirant Roll-on, the strongest roll-on antiperspirant available without a prescription—strong enough for those with hyperhidrosis. It provides long-lasting protection against sweat and odor for up to 7 days and is clinically proven to keep you dry and fresh all day long.
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