One thing many of us zero wasters will have to give up one day or another is store-bought deodorant. They either come in aerosol containers, which are terrible for the environment, or some other plastic that’s difficult to recycle. Conventional deodorant has also been linked to several severe health problems, including early puberty and breast cancer. So what can you do, lean into the stereotype and become a smelly hippy?
Of course, the zero-waste answer to nearly all concerns is to just freakin make it yourself. The first time I looked up recipes for deodorant, well before I actually made the commitment to be zero waste, it was discouraging. I found long recipes with ingredients I had no idea how to acquire without trash, such as beeswax, shea butter, and cocoa butter. I wanted something simpler.
It wasn’t until about a month ago that I found a recipe that I liked, made by the youtuber AshleysGreenLife. It’s super easy, cheap, and requires a minimum of 3 ingredients. Here’s the recipe I followed(although you may want to start with smaller amounts):
1/4 cup of coconut oil
1/4 cup of baking soda
1/4 cup of arrowroot powder, which acts as a mild antiperspirant(you can use corn starch as an alternative)
your choice of essential oil (optional)
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl(you may need to melt the coconut oil). The amount of essential oil you put in the mixture determines the intensity of the smell, but I used about 20 drops. Place your mixture into desired container, and enjoy! To apply, simply put a small amount on your finger and rub into your underarm.
Some things to consider:
- The melting point of coconut oil is 76 degrees Fahrenheit, or 24 degrees Celsius, meaning that in a warmer climate, it may be of a liquid consistency. To avoid this, simply keep it in the refrigerator.
- Before using an essential oil, be sure to do some research on weather or not it is safe for deodorant. If you have sensitive skin, I would advise not using essential oil.
This deodorant smells great! I put lavender essential oil in it, and I love the scent. I even dab a bit of it on my neck to act as a perfume. I find that should I put some on in the morning, the fragrance stays until about midday, upon which your underarms just smells neutral(meaning it still prevents body odor) rather than of essential oil. This recipe also lasts really long. I made it early September, and have yet to hardly make a dent.
It’s cheaper, effective, zero waste, easy to make, and you have complete say on what goes into your body. What could be better than that?
Enjoy your underarms!