I have never thought of not using anti-perspirant. It just never occurred to me that it could be possibly hazardous to my health! My sister, K, came to visit about two and a half weeks ago and in a conversation about natural face and body care she mentioned that she makes her own deodorant. Me: “You, what? What do you put in it? Does it work??” I needed to investigate this phenomenon further. I was surprised how many results “homemade deodorant” brought up in Google.
Below is an account of the last two weeks I’ve been recording so I can remember how my body reacts to using natural deodorant. Warning, there are details you probably never wanted to know about my perspiration. 😉 Sorry that it’s such a long post.
8 Apr: I found a recipe that I liked the looks of at Wellness Mama (I used the second one). Took the plunge and bought the ingredients we didn’t have: coconut oil and arrowroot powder*. This recipe made enough for 1 1/2 quarter pint (4 oz) jars that I handily had from my mustard making adventure. (And I added a few drops of sweet orange and tangerine essential oils.)
9 Apr: Tried out my deodorant for the first time! Based on comments/posts I had read, I chose to wash my armpits with a washcloth first before I applied it. Also, I only used a small amount, less than the size of a dime on my fingertip and rubbed it in. It worked really well, and I didn’t notice my body odor. It was about 75*F outside, so it was definitely warm out for my walk from work to the metro. (And after smelling my armpits D concurred that I did not smell.)
10 Apr: Worked wonderfully again, and it was 90*F out today! No smell until I went for my 4-mile run after work. But even then it wasn’t too bad. However, I found that I had two weird lines of raw skin in my right armpit. I thought it was from my backpack strap rubbing there during my commute, but after some testing I realised that it wasn’t that. Talking with D and based on where the rawness was, D and I have concluded that it was most likely from my new deodorant. After some more thinking and Googling, I think that it’s from the baking soda since I have kinda sensitive skin. (And this is probably why my scalp reacted to my no-poo and to Arm&Hammer free and clear laundry detergent.) I’ve made a new batch (only half) without the baking soda. I’ve put some healing salve on my sores, hopefully it will be healed in the morning.
11 Apr: Armpit skin is mostly healed! Had to store my new batch in the fridge since it was too warm in here last night, so it was kinda difficult to get any out to put it on this morning. Today it didn’t work so well, I smelled. 🙁 But I’m not giving up! I’m hoping that it may just be because that I didn’t use enough this morning.
12 Apr: Tried Version 1.1 again to give it a fair chance, but it didn’t work. Though D said that I didn’t smell bad, I still smelled like B.O. Drat.
13 Apr: Tried Version 1.1 again, but no such luck. After a day in D.C. viewing the cherry blossoms, I smelled. D said it wasn’t overwhelming, but I still stink. Made Version 1.2, added 1 1/2 tsp of baking soda hoping that this amount won’t irritate my skin, but will help kill bacteria so I don’t smell. I’ll let you know how it works out tomorrow
14 Apr: I stink. I am debating increasing the baking soda again, but I am too tired to make a batch tonight.
15 Apr: Wore my Dove deodorant, and it worked per the usual. Debating making a Version 1.3…
16 Apr: Wore Dove, still smell. I’m thinking that if I am going to smell either way, maybe I should just smell without aluminum infiltrating my lymphatic system…
17 Apr: Made Version 1.3 and added 1 1/2 tsp of baking soda. I think it worked okay, from what I could smell when I sniffed my armpits, but I jumped in the shower after work before I could ask D what he thought. Boo.
18 Apr: Tried Version 1.3, it’s not perfect but for the most part I think it gets rid of most of my B.O. But, I think it’s irritating my skin because I have a few red spots under there, but that could be because I shaved last night…
19 Apr: I had the day off work so I tried using Version 1.3 again. I didn’t smell too bad except when I lifted my arms… Not good. Also, it is definitely irritating my skin, so I don’t think this is going to work out long run. So for our date this evening to a play, I used my Dove again. But I smelled waaayyyyy worse with that. Hmmm.
20 Apr: Tried Version 1.3, I smelled but not too bad even after spending the morning working hard planting trees. D was a dear and while grocery shopping he bought me (and himself!) some Tom’s of Maine natural deodorant. (He’s so awesome.) I’ll try it tomorrow and let you know how it goes!
21 Apr: Used Tom’s of Maine (lavender scent!) and it works great!
22 Apr: Tried out the Tom’s again and it is really awesome. I’m thinking that this is a keeper!
23 Apr: Tom’s is working pretty well, I smelled a little at the end of the day, but I’ve noticed that this is a lot more when I wear long sleeves as a whole. And I didn’t wash my pits this morning. Doh!
24 Apr: I’m really liking Tom’s, and while it hasn’t been perfect I think that that it is going to be really good to try this for a while. Plus, the smell is lovely but not crazy overpowering that I’ve hated from antiperspirant.