Homemade Deodorant

Women typically shave their armpits and then minutes later apply chemicals directly on those open pores.
Ever wonder if this is the safest thing to do?
Our skin is the largest organ in our body and it absorbs anything we put on it. I know “they” say things are healthy for skin: anti-aging creams, lotions, bug sprays, sunscreen… but these all have chemicals that our bodies are absorbing.
Can that really be healthy?
If you question the body’s ability to absorb- test it out on yourself. Rub a cut clove of garlic on the bottom of your feet. Within 15 minutes, you will taste it!

We need to be very careful what we allow to be absorbed into our body.
So toss that brand name deodorant! Your skin deserves better.
There are a few healthier option, but I haven’t found them to work very well. Primal Pit Paste makes it very similar to this recipe, but with scents and I highly recommend it if you don’t want to make your own.
This homemade deodorant works excellently. Even for 3 teenage boys and my steel working husband!
Coconut oil is a wonderful: it is anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. I use expeller pressed coconut oil, because it has no smell, but if you enjoy the coconut smell, go for virgin coconut oil.
Baking soda is a great deodorizer and combats offensive smells.
Arrowroot makes it more “spreadable”. I avoid cornstarch, because GMO corn is so prevalent.
Combine this with homemade peppermint lip balm and you have a wonderful gift set!
Homemade Deodorant
1/2 cup baking soda (find baking soda here)
1/2 cup arrowroot powder (Find arrowroot powder here)
2/3 cup coconut oil, melted (Find coconut oil here)
2 four-ounce containers put it in. I used these.
Mix the baking soda and arrowroot powder with a fork. Pour in the melted coconut oil and stir until there are no clumps and all is incorporated.
Set in refrigerator for about an hour, until it has firmed up. (This prevents separation.)
Leave the container in the bathroom.
To apply:
Take out about 1/2 teaspoon (I use the back of my fingernail to “scoop” it), allow it to rest against your skin for a couple seconds (letting it warm) and then rub it into your armpit.
Coconut oil melts at 76 degrees F. If you live in a warm climate you may need to store the deodorant in the refrigerator, or stir it before each use.

Want more great DIY recipes?Click here for DIY Organic Beauty Recipes
By Heather Dessinger of Mommypotamus.com
Try out my homemade peppermint lip balm recipe here– You’ll never want store bought lip balm again, it’s so wonderful!

About Rachel Jones

Hi there! I’m Rachel Jones, and I founded Nourishing Minimalism in 2012 at the beginning of my minimalist journey after I'd been doing a yearly decluttering challenge for 4 years and started to see a change in my home. If you're looking for encouragement in your journey, please join our FREE Facebook Group: Nourishing Minimalism Facebook Group


  1. Anonymous on 11/12/2012 at 3:16 am

    Wondering if anyone has problems with staining of clothing?

    • Rachel on 11/12/2012 at 3:21 am

      I’ve been using this for over 2 years and haven’t had any stains at all, I wear fitted t-shirts most of the time.

  2. Anonymous on 11/29/2012 at 5:43 am

    You can also form it into a cleaned out old deoderant container. That’s what I do and no need for getting your nails involved in the application process!

  3. Anonymous on 02/19/2013 at 11:14 pm

    Nice idea…the article contains too many exclamation points!

    • Anonymous on 05/13/2013 at 10:30 pm

      Wahatt????!!!!!!!!!!! who flippin cares!

    • Anonymous on 02/09/2014 at 4:03 am


  4. Crystal Laws on 03/06/2013 at 5:03 pm

    I for one happen to LIKE her enthusiasm! It seems very cowardly of you to leave a comment “anonymously”…
    and BTW it’s her blog and you’re not her editor!

    Q:How did your comment help in any way?? !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    A:it didn’t.

    • K on 06/22/2014 at 7:50 am

      I use arrowroot powder (also called arrowroot flour) instead of the baking soda. I don’t react to the baking soda, but I like the arrowroot better.

      • K on 06/22/2014 at 7:51 am

        Sorry, I was not clear. I meant I use all arrowroot powder. Sigh, posting before awake.

  5. Luann on 04/16/2013 at 8:47 pm

    I’ve tried this a couple of times but after about a week I start getting a rash. Anyone else have this problem?

    • Rachel on 04/16/2013 at 8:53 pm

      My husband does that, but it took about 2 years before he started reacting. I cut the baking soda amount by half, and now there are no issues.

    • Anonymous on 02/09/2014 at 4:19 am

      Rash here, too. I thought it might be the baking soda…under a microscope it’s very crystallized, versus the rounder qualities of corn starch. Thank you, Rachel!

  6. Lynaldine on 04/24/2013 at 2:23 am

    make sens to me ! less you put chemical on your skin, further you will be healthy ,oh great you made my day ! thanks for sharing all your super recipes, please keep going , it s really great to share all those information, we need that. have nice day! Claire

  7. Anonymous on 06/09/2013 at 5:06 pm

    Can you substitute tapioca starch for the arrowroot powder? I am not sure if they are interchangeable, but my neighbor offered me some tapioca starch if I wanted it. Thanks!

    • Rachel on 06/11/2013 at 3:18 am

      I’m have only used arrowroot and corn starch. Both of these have more of a anti-perspirant qualities. I’m not sure how tapioca would be in deodorant, but please let me know if you try it!

    • colorfulpurls on 07/31/2013 at 10:40 pm

      I use tapioca starch every time. Just add a extra tablespoon of tapioca. You can get it super cheap at Asian markets

  8. LifeAsWeKnowIt on 06/12/2013 at 8:44 pm

    Could you add a fragrance to this recipe? Maybe a scented massage oil or similar?

    • Rachel on 06/14/2013 at 3:50 am

      Essential oils would work well.

  9. Anonymous on 07/24/2013 at 10:17 pm

    How long does this stay fresh?

    • Rachel on 07/24/2013 at 10:19 pm

      I normally run out every 4-6 months. The only thing in it to “go bad” is the coconut oil, so just look at the expiration date on your coconut oil.

  10. klynnel on 08/07/2013 at 2:23 am

    I love this recipe. I forgot to bring mine with me on a short trip, and found that chemical deodorants just can’t cut it for me. Won’t make that mistake again.

  11. sparksmia on 09/01/2013 at 2:33 am

    This sounds awesome, except that I’m super-allergic to coconut anything. Do you have any thoughts as to what could provide a reasonable alternative-ingredient?

    Love your blog! 🙂

    • Rachel on 09/01/2013 at 2:37 am

      I really don’t know, the benefit to the coconut oil is antibacterial and antifungal, I’m not sure what other oils have that ability.
      Palm oil gets fairly hard if you refrigerate it, but it has a unique smell.
      Please leave a comment if you find something that works, I know others would love to know!

  12. κ¥Lεε on 09/06/2013 at 1:55 am

    I wonder if potato starch would be a good substitute for the arrowroot powder. I can’t seem to find arrowroot anywhere!

    • Rachel on 09/06/2013 at 2:17 am

      I’m not sure. Tapioca starch is another possible, but I don’t know how either would work in a deodorant. If you can find an organic corn starch, that would be my next choice. It works well.

    • Anonymous on 09/18/2013 at 8:37 pm

      I find arrow root in the grocery store in the spice section.

  13. Mary Harding on 09/06/2013 at 2:56 pm

    I too have problems with my t-shirts staining. Since I don’t use detergent, but soap….I don’t seem to be able to get the grease/oil out of the sides of the shirts. So far, the only thing I have thought of is to put the deo on AFTER I am dressed, so the sides of the shirt don’t rub through the oil. Anybody else have hints? (I wash in cold water.)

    • Anonymous on 12/02/2013 at 10:48 pm

      Vinegar has worked for me when removing stains from my hubby’s clothing. Good Luck!

  14. Anonymous on 09/09/2013 at 7:17 am

    Doesnt the coconut oil melt in your armpits and hence oiling your clothes too?

    • Rachel on 09/10/2013 at 2:21 pm

      When applied, the coconut oil is absorbed into the skin.

  15. Marilyn Godfrey on 09/15/2013 at 4:09 am

    Thanks for sharing.

  16. Marilyn Godfrey on 09/15/2013 at 4:10 am

    Thanks for sharing.

  17. Granny Goose on 10/03/2013 at 2:19 pm

    Don’t mean to sound gross, but since eliminating all fast foods, packaged foods, sodas and sugar from my diet. I no longer have perspiration odor. But if worried about this then this sounds like a great idea. I will have to make some for my husband and daughter who still insist on using them.

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  19. Matt Hardy on 11/05/2013 at 9:03 am

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  20. isabel laava on 12/06/2013 at 10:15 am


  21. Anonymous on 12/07/2013 at 8:39 pm

    I have been using this deo. for about 8 months and have not had a problem with staining. I love it and will keep using it. I would not put essential oils in it unless you want a smell too it. I like my underarms “smell free”.

  22. Anonymous on 02/09/2014 at 7:14 am

    I heard about using bees wax as well to help it to be more solid. Has anyone tried this?

  23. Rachel on 02/20/2014 at 9:27 am

    This recipe makes me smell funny. How do I keep that from happening?

  24. Staci on 05/08/2015 at 12:12 pm

    I started using this last week, added lavender and tea tree oil for extra antibacterial action, it works really well! 🙂
    BUT! If you’re making this but planning on experimenting with scent or formulation, cut the recipe in HALF if not in QUARTERS, it takes only a teeny amount to keep you un-stinky and it’ll last about forever, I have enough to last me months and now I want to experiment with other scents, so I’m giving some away to friends. 😉

  25. Gina on 06/20/2017 at 11:06 am

    I LOOVVE primal pit paste. I am just finishing up my first tube of it. Since I have all these ingredients I will try this first before ordering more! Thanks for the recipe. I love simple recipes like this.

  26. Maniscalco Donna on 04/11/2018 at 6:56 pm

    Bentonite Clay is a good substitute for baking soda if you are allergic.

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