Recently I admitted to my sister that I had concocted my own deodorant. After avoiding that little confession for several weeks, I finally caved because I was a dying to talk about my amazingly fresh pits. As expected, she totally freaked out.
What is it about venturing into the land of DIY deodorant that instantly puts you in the ‘has she gone totally crazy?!’ territory? Call me crazy then because this is one of the best homemade secrets I’ve tried.
Lavender Coconut Deodorant
I’ve been using the natural stuff for several weeks, and here’s what I’ve noticed:
The first few days your pits will itch like crazy. Apparently this is them getting used to not having the usual chemicals.
The smell is awesome. As a big coconut fan already I love the tropical-y smell combined with my favorite essential oils. I do the sniff test every so often because I’m still paranoid about BO and have yet to smell anything really appalling. By nighttime the smell has usually worn off but nothing is stinky.
Yes, I still sweat on occasion. But it’s far less than I expected. I was worried about lots of sweating since natural deodorants don’t have antiperspirant, but it has not been an issue at all. And when I do sweat, it’s not accompanied by terrible BO.
Coconut Oil Deodorant Recipe
To make your own you’ll need:
—1/4 cup baking soda
—1/4 cup cornstarch (you can also use arrowroot powder)
—3 tablespoons coconut oil
—2 tablespoons shea butter
—Essential oils (I used 2 drops lavender, 2 drops jasmine and 2 drops eucalyptus)
Melt the coconut oil and shea butter together over low heat. Stir in the baking soda, corn starch/arrowroot and essential oils and pour into a small jar with a lid. You’ll be amazed at how well this solidifies. I apply it with my fingers but it would be super easy to use as a bar as well.
Apparently after a few months of use the baking soda can mess up your underarm pH – you’ll know this has happened if you get the crazy itchiness again. You can speed up the detox process with an arm pit mask or try swabbing with apple cider vinegar before applying the deodorant to correct the pH.
Minty Coconut Toothpaste
Now on to toothpaste! Detoxing my dental routine was an easier switch for me – at least mentally. In practice, though, I’ve found it much harder to adjust to.
One of the reasons is that I love brushing my teeth (weird, but true). So I brush 3-4 times a day. Usually for a looong time. My OCD brushing habits were the major reason I wanted to switch to something natural. How much of that stuff am I ingesting with all that crazy brushing?
Here’s what I’ve noticed:
It’s much harder to brush for long periods of time. The toothpaste gets very liquid-y and doesn’t foam like regular toothpastes so you can’t keep working it around for more than about 45 seconds. So if you want to brush longer, you’ll need to apply the toothpaste again.
It tastes good! Again, I’m a coconut fan so if you can cover up the baking soda, you won’t mind the taste at all. And the mint will make your breath nice and fresh.
A nice side benefit is that you’ll inevitably get coconut oil on your lips. I used to always have to apply lip balm after brushing my teeth but now my lips are nice and soft at the end of brushing.
Minty Coconut Oil Toothpaste Recipe
—3 tablespoons coconut oil
—3 tablespoons baking soda
—10-15 drops peppermint essential oil
Warm the coconut oil if solid as I think it’s easier to mix everything together with the liquid. Stir in the baking soda and essential oil and store in a sealed container. If you still don’t like the taste or you’re trying to get your kids on board, then adding a bit of stevia really helps.
Have you tried making your own toothpaste or deodorant? How has it gone? A natural shampoo is next on my list – so far I’ve tried and failed with two recipes. I have a feeling that one will be the hardest change yet!
Coconut Oil and Baking Soda DIY Deodorant Recipe
- Double boiler
- 4-ounce jar with lid
- 4 tablespoons shea butter
- 4 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1/4 cup non-GMO cornstarch you can also use arrowroot powder
- 24 drops essential oil 1% dilution
- Combine shea butter and coconut oil in a heat-safe bowl. Heat a couple of inches of water over low heat in a small saucepan. Place the bowl on top to melt the oils.
- Remove from heat and stir in the baking soda, corn starch/arrowroot. Add in essential oils and combine.
- Pour into a small jar and let it sit until completely hardened. Replace lid and keep in a cool, dry spot.
- Apply a small amount to your underarms with your fingers.
I just recently started playing with deodorants again after reading that I could absolutely bail on the baking soda and use arrowroot powder instead. I'm toying with probiotics and diatomaceous earth at the moment, and my last D.O bars were gritty and softer than I'd like, but even my failures are usable and still beat the store-bought stuff! I've also started doing a pit mask once or twice a week and that's helped me keep my pits behavin'.
Cosmetics done with baking soda should be used at least three months after you make the product!!!
Megan Crow says
I live in Costa Rica…..in such a tropical area, wouldn’t the homemade toothpaste just be liquidy always, since coconut oil melts at 76F?
I live in Thailand and it’s not a problem, just make it thicker with baking soda or arrowroot powder, or just keep adding more as you brush it away.
I live in Hawaii & it does sometimes melt so you just spoon some in your mouth & no big deal, start brushing:)
It feels like it moisturizes my teeth?
There is also an essential oil blend made by Ora Wellness that I add in & my mouth feels healthier than ever!!!
You won’t go back to store bought tooth pastes after you try this!!!
Is the essential oil safe to put that much I have 10 tbs of baking sofa and 10 tbs of coconut oil and I only use 4 drops of pepppermint oil it just scares me Because the bottle says do not ingest
Denise Dickson says
I hope I’m not overstepping any bounds by answering this question. I love this recipe! As far as the recommendation to not ingest the peppermint, just make sure that you buy an essential oil that is CPTG ( certified pure therapeutic grade) and then there is no worry about ingesting it. Check out doTERRA, I’ve used it for years. Hope this helps.
Gussie Aday says
You don’t ingest commercial toothpaste either. you don’t swallow it. you spit it out and then rinse your mouth several times with water and spit those rinses out as well.
I asked my dentist as too, she said it wasn’t dangerous at all. She said that the mechanics if cleaning your teeth and flossing are far more important than the tooth cleaning compounds. And never let a baby fall asleep leaving a bottle of juice or milk in its mouth. The fructose and lactose can cause problems later to the dental health of the child.
i use 3/4 parts arrowroot for 1/4 parts baking soda + the coco oil (and essential oils if u like – i leave it natural), as more baking soda makes my skin sting .. play around with volumes, until you find your perfect mix. i use the exact same recipe as toothpaste ! i read somebody ask about consistency, if ur applying the deo with ur fingers, the consistency isn’t an issue – sometimes mine turns out more or less solid .. :) just have fun and play around with small quantities to start out and if the first batches don’t work out u didn’t waste much :)
Erika B. says
Baking soda causes irritation for me. Is there anything else I could substitute it with?
Baking soda hurts my teeth too, and my gum as well.
Since I ditch the baking soda, I made mine from mixing regular toothpaste, oil, cocoa butter, and a little salt water. You could say it semi-homemade. Works well for me
Baking soda has a pH that can cause rash and itchiness with prolonged skin contact, for some people. Try replacing the baking soda with food-grade diatomaceous earth (available at most pet stores).
Try arrowroot powder, I’ve been reading about what to use and people have recommended this, I actually bought some to try
Jennifer D. says
I know this post is from sometime back but I need some help. First of all, I made the toothpaste and love it. But the deoderant didn’t solidify. Should I try to add more cornstarch or baking powder? Is there something else I can mix with it to get it to solidify? I don’t really want to use wax as was mentioned above.
Try freezing it just for a bit, depending on the area you live in, the coconut oil might just be melting .
I keep mine in the fridge.
you can buy a coconut oil that melts at a higher temperature, i.e. 92 degrees. Also, add some cocoa butter, this would help firm it up. That’s what i do.
Hello! First of all i can admit that i love all your recipes!!!
Making this deodorant was actually my first atempt for a diy product. And as it was expected i must have done something wrong, cause even though i used the exact amounts it doesn’t solidify! I actually made it 15 hours ago. Is it maybe the temperatures? I live in Greece and we have like 26c. Should i wait longer or put it in the fridge?
You need bees wax to solidify coconut oil. For my recipe i use 0.8-.9oz of wax for 2 table spoons of baking soda, 2 table spoons starch, 2 table spoons coconut oil. Good for 25-30C climate. In winter i use less wax.
I love these ideas! I recently started trying more natural living, its nice to see all the things one can actually make. I might have to try the deodorant recipe – about 2 weeks ago I stopped using it all together. Running late one vmorning I forgot to put it on and realized by the end of the day I wasn’t noticeably stinky I did the sniff test and it didn’t smell bad so i figured why not just stop. Haven’t had a problem yet–though its march and still really cold so the true test will be this summer :) Next up is quitting smoking.
I’m so allergic to commercial deodorants I have been making my own – and it works brilliantly. I have never had any itching. I know it’s not really an antiperspirant but the arrowroot or cornstarch soaks up perspiration and my clothes don’t get damp – or stained. A side effect is that I have got rid of thrush, which I have had under one of my breasts for about 20 years, by rubbing a bit of my deodorant under that breast each morning.
I also make my own toothpaste, face/hand cream, and skin toner.
I believe baking soda has some aluminum in it and hence why it works good as a deodorant. If my memory serves me well, it gets into it during manuf. I believe the alternative it arrowroot powder.
Hi everyone ! I also love coconut oil. I intend to follow your second recipe without pepermint oil. Is it ok? And how often should I use this because I know that baking soda can erode teeth.
The toothpaste recipe sounds wonderful but you couldn’t spit it down the drain as coconut oil is a solid at room temperature. It would eventually clog your drain. Shouldn’t you spit this in the garbage?
I have used my own coconut oil toothpaste and I also oil pool with it. But yes I have paper towels in my drawer and spit into there then rinse my mouth.
I live in a 2 story and think the same thing.
Riley Mae says
I seriously never post comments on blogs or review things but this deodorant is AMAZING. I made some for my partner and I recently and even after working out of an 8 hour work day, this stuff works better than any natural OR generic brand of deodorant either of us have used. A+.
Did you get itchy like she stated?
I love all your ideas!
Just a question about this deodorant: what is the role of the baking soda for this particular use?
( do you think making it without baking soda would still work as a deodorant?)
I have been trying “natural” deodorants for the past year and nothing has worked, but this coconut oil version is amazing! I love that it’s more of a lotion consistency than a solid, and the Shea butter is much easier on my skin than anything else I’ve tried. Thank you so much for posting this and saving me from going back to a grocery store version!
Thanks so much for sharing! I made your toothpaste recipe (added stevia) and my super-sensitive teeth hurt no longer! Commercial toothpastes were making my teeth so sensitive that even brushing made them hurt. I have been using for a week but I noticed a difference after 2 days. I don’t even mind the non-lather and salty flavor.
Next I will try the deodorant!
I am curious to know about the natural deodorants effects on clothing. Since the recipe calls for Shea butter and coconut oil/butter does this present any staining issues? I’ve read from some other blogs that it does so have been apprehensive to try it out. your tthought?
Hi Cyn – yes, I’ve read that too but so far I haven’t seen any staining. I guess it might depend on the type of clothing – I’m mainly wearing t-shirts.
Lindsey Johnson says
I’ve been using this deodorant for about a month and if I let it soak into my skin for 15-20 minutes (about the time it takes to blow dry my hair and get dressed) it seems to help with the staining. I have also started dusting my underarms with a little extra cornstarch just in case – for special shirts, i.e. not t-shirts or things I just wear around the house. Hope that helps! I’m totally hooked and don’t ever want to go back to the other stuff I was using.
I’ve just changed to using coconut oil toothpaste, simply because I keep hearing bad things about the ingredients of regular toothpaste.
So far, so good. Will be interesting to see if my dentist notices!
I haven’t tried it yet, but i am going to try them both!
I have been working on a deodorant recipe that works for me and will make me hubby happy as well because I would like us both to begin weeding out the chemicals. I make all of our soap and am in the works of making our own laundry detergent (not a big leap, but I am a sucker for the perfect scent.) I make our shampoo bars and am going to start making our toothpaste and dishwasher detergent as well. Making shampoo bars is fairly simple if you make soap, you can reformulate it for your hair care needs. I am teaching a class on soap-making this weekend and shampoo bars are on my list of future classes. ;0)
I’d be interesting in hearing more about your shampoo bars. :D
Me too! Those sound divine! And so far my homemade shampoo attempts have been total duds.
Recent attempt for diy shampoo with Coconut milk and castilla liquid soap is amazing. All my family members love it and interesting the milk hasn’t gone stale over time as you may think.
I like to hand mill my cold process soap, adding aloe butter, shea butter and grapeseed oil to make a nice conditioning bar. I add chamomile and honey to it for my fine Swedish hair ;0) I also make a coconut oil bar that I call my “special occasion bar”. I add rose clay to it which gives amazing volume.
There are extensive additives and beneficial ingredients to add to shampoo bars, depending on your hair type and specific preferences. The hallmark of most of them, however, is high castor, palm, or coconut oil content. I personally prefer a high coconut, because I find castor to be drying on my scalp and it can be difficult (and expensive) to source sustainably harvested palm oil. So coconut for me! I superfat my coconut bars by at least 20% and I can tell you, they are one of the best bars I have ever used, hands down. My handmilled shampoo bars are a basic recipe that I let cure for 2-4 weeks before grating, melting, putting additives, then molding and curing for another 2-4 weeks. They are super gentle and conditioning, kind of like “Wen” in a shampoo bar.
And hello as well to you, Gerbermom. ;0)
Bethany, your recipe sounds amazing! I’ve never heard of rose clay – I’m always on the lookout for ways to add volume to my hair, so thanks for the tip!
I’ve been using this deodorant for more than a year now and it’s the best I’ve ever used. Mine doesn’t have shea butter in though and it sounds like a great idea for some extra moisture. I didn’t have any itchiness. I also read that some people react badly to the baking soda, but I haven’t had any problems. I also use a baking soda and coconut oil mixture to remove sticky label glue from jars.
The shea butter I think adds a bit more firmness to the deodorant – it doesn’t liquify like coconut oil does so I’m hoping it will keep it solid even in summer.
Oh yes, that would be very helpful. Mine melts completely in summer. I keep it in a little jar, so it’s not really a problem, but I’m scared of travelling with it. It would suck to have everything in my bag covered in oil. I guess I could just put it in a ziplock bag though. I’m going to try the shea butter.
Emily S. says
Coconut oil is some pretty amazing stuff. I make my own deodorant using a very similar recipe of coconut oil, shea butter, arrowroot powder, beeswax and lavender oil. It works super well and I haven’t had any itchiness or irritation. I love it!
Next time I’m going to try arrowroot powder! I bet the lavender and the beeswax smell amazing in there :)
How much of each. I don’t want to try the baking soda please let me know the measurements you use
I have made my own deodorant with a recipe very similar to yours, sans shea butter. Unfortunately, it really irritates my underarms, to the point that I haven’t used it since. I believe it to be the baking soda and have been told to maybe use less if I attempt to make it again.
Janice c. says
You can add liquid castile soap to your toothpaste for foaming action.