The very first place I started implementing Clean Beauty into my regimen was with natural deodorant. I probably started this journey in my early twenties, a time when I really didn’t know anything about beauty, much less clean beauty. I knew just one thing: antiperspirants did not work for me! Without getting into too much icky detail, I have sensitive underarms and suffered from the dreaded yellow, aluminum pit stains. I took to the internet to find a solution to this embarrassing problem and that’s when I realized that my parents are always right 😉 .
I should probably rewind a bit as that may not be a very logical progression. My Dear Dad has been giving me (amazing) advice on how to take care of my skin since I was young. Don’t take long showers with hot water. Don’t over soap as it strips your skin of natural oils. Make sure your skin is moist before applying moisturizer. And of course, Never use antiperspirant. With the all-knowing attitude that only a teenager could have, I quickly dismissed these true pearls of wisdom, decided I knew best, and ‘rolled on’ anyway. Turns out that antiperspirants function to block sweat by blocking the sweat ducts via aluminum compounds. When these acidic aluminum compounds come in contact with and bond with sweat, they are likely to create stains, not to mention potential health issues. While sweating is a perfectly normal response to cool the body down, ain’t nobody okay with BO (body odor). And therein lies the distinction between antiperspirants, sweat blockers, and deodorants, BO blockers.
OK, with all of that ‘somewhat TMI’ talk behind us, we can get back to my deodorant journey. About a decade or more ago, there weren’t as many natural, aluminum-free deodorant options as there are today. I tried many mainstream versions (Arm&Hammer, Toms of Maine, L’Occitane, The Body Shop) and even a DIY option (coconut oil). Products got discontinued or just didn’t perform as well as I would have preferred and I continued my search. Within the past five years, I have tried Crystal Body Deodorant, Native, and Primal Pit Paste and while these may have been better than the previous options, I still wasn’t ready to give up the hunt.
It wasn’t until I received a GoodBeing box with a full-sized American Provenance deodorant stick that I decided that I was ready to stop looking. All dramatics aside, I was introduced to American Provenance (AP) over two years ago and I have been consistently using their Pinups and Paramours Deodorant ever since. Thanks to hype, I dabbled in Native and YouTuber recommended Etsy-brand LCOrganics, but neither delivered the same level of odor protection and were quickly set aside. I will note, however, that I have recently started trying Ursa Major’s No BS Unscented deodorant and so far, it seems promising, as a secondary option.
Last year I came across Pacifica Deodorant Wipes and I really like this concept for on-the-go. I keep a pack of these in my car for those times when I need a quick freshen up. I can’t speak to their efficacy in the same sense as the AP or Ursa Major deodorants as I use these much less frequently, but whenever I have used it, its gotten the job done in a non-irritating fashion.
Everyone’s body chemistry is different, so there is a bit of trial and error involved in finding the deodorant which is the best fit for you, especially if you are an avid antiperspirant user. One common and controversial ingredient in many deodorants is baking soda. Baking soda has anti-bacterial properties which make it a good candidate to aid in reducing underarm odor. However, when alkaline baking soda comes into contact with naturally acidic underarms, it can lead to skin irritation and rashes in many individuals. The good news here is that there are a lot of brands that have natural, aluminum-free deodorants, Ursa Major being one of them. Also, a lot of brands have turned to activated charcoal as a main ingredient, due to it’s odor-causing bacteria/moisture absorbing properties.
Although I wasn’t actively pursuing clean beauty when I made the switch from antiperspirant to deodorant, it’s a switch that I am happy to have made and a relatively easy one in today’s ‘woke’ beauty market. Credo Beauty alone has an entire page of options, not to mention the influx of options in larger chain stores. My previous underarm sensitivity has largely subsided and I feel confident in my skin and in my clothes. What is your holy grail natural deodorant? Though I love my AP, I have a bit too much curiosity to not check out an activated charcoal version. Leave me your faves in the comments below! Have a fragrant day 😛
Sale Alert! American Provenance is currently running their Resolution Sale where you can save 20% site wide and get free shipping with the code RS20. Also, you can get a four-pack of deodorants (you can mix and match types) for $35 with free shipping. They also have subscribe and save options, where the cost comes down even more. After taking some time to peruse their selection, I found that they carry $5 travel-sized sticks, which could also be perfect for those who may be trying natural deodorant for the very first time! And, the cherry on top is their amazing customer service: the last time I placed an order, I got the four-pack and they threw in a free lip balm, just like that 🙂
*I am in no way affiliated or collaborating with any of the brands mentioned above. I paid for all products myself. I just enjoy sharing my faves and sales.