The Clean Beauty Deodorant Guide

The two products I get asked about most frequently from those making the switch to cleaner living are: Mascara and Deodorant.

Making the shift can be tricky; these two tend to stump many, but don't be discouraged. I shared my findings on a mascara showdown already, so let's get on with the deodorant!

Unlike my mascara post, I will not be including products with potentially-toxic ingredients, including those which may present themselves as "clean" like Tom's of Maine or Desert Essence. Feel free to call out others you have seen and I'll add them here!

First, why should you stop using antiperspirant?

Antiperspirants are designed to block your sweat ducts to prevent or lessen the amount of sweating. This is not how the body is designed to work and I wouldn't recommend suppressing or altering a natural behavior such as sweating. The active ingredient used to block sweat glands is Aluminum, which has been linked to cancer (source 2) and hormone disruption.

Second, if antiperspirants are bad, why should you avoid conventional deodorants?

Conventional deodorants (and antiperspirants for that matter) contain harmful ingredients linked to cancer, endocrine disruption, like phthalates, parabens, tricolosan, formaldehyde and fragrances along with skin absorption enhancers like propylene glycol which make these nasty ingredients penetrate the skin more effectively!

Lucky for us, there are so many great options void of these ingredients.

Baking Soda

Several people have a baking soda sensitivity, including my husband, so he was my guinea pig on a few items! I have heard that administering an armpit detox has helped some with their baking soda sensitivity, along with excessive odor.

For sensitive skin, you also may benefit from shaving at night and applying deodorant in the morning.

Armpit detox
 

Sometimes continued use of a conventional deodorant/antiperspirant can promote the growth of bad bacteria and make you even stinkier than usual. This is what I personally experienced, and was not only using Secret "Clinical Strength" antiperspirant, but was reapplying multiple times a day! You may consider first doing an armpit-detox to help reset the bacteria and pH balance.


The Clean Beauty Deodorant Roundup

Remember, body chemistry differs from person to person, so both my husband and I tested each to gather intel. I also incorporated feedback from others who have used the products listed below.


Meow Meow Tweet Cream

Overview: Does an incredible job of absorbing wetness and maintaining a pleasant odor. This is the most talked about by my friends as their go-to deodorant of choice!

Contains Baking Soda? Yes and No, they have both available! 

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass!

End of Day Moisture Test: Dry

Application: Gently rub a pea-sized amount from the glass jar into each armpit with your fingertips.

Texture: Silky smooth cream

Scent: Two scents with baking soda (Tea Tree and Lavender) and two scents without baking soda (Grapefruit and Lavender)

Residue: The cream dries quickly, but can leave white residue if not careful sneaking into that blouse or dress. Be careful not to apply too much, a little goes a long way.

Notable: Vegan.

Precautions: The cream contains no unnecessary hardeners or waxes, so the consistency will change with temperature fluctuation - i.e. it may melt if it gets hot enough! Simply stir it up and place in the refrigerator to solidify.

Bottom line: Get it. 

Shop: All available from Integrity Botanicals & Credo Beauty or the Baking Soda-free only versions from Follain or The Detox Market, $14, 2.4 oz

Ingredients: With baking soda: *Maranta arudinacea (arrowroot) powder, sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), *cocos nucifera (virgin coconut) oil, *butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter, kaolin clay, *simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil + essential oil (Tea Tree: melaleuca. Lavender: lavender)

Without baking soda: Lavender: *Manihot esculenta (arrowroot) root powder, magnesium hydroxide, *cocos nucifera (coconut) oil, *butyrospermum parkii (shea) fruit butter, *simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, *lavandula angustifolia (lavender) & *melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) leaf essential oils.

Grapefruit:  *Maranta arudinacea (arrowroot) powder, *butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter, magnesium hydroxide, *cocos nucifera (virgin coconut) oil, *simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) oil, *cirus paradisii (grapefruit) essential oil, *citrus bergamia (bergamot) essential oil, *citrus sinensis (sweet orange) essential oil, *citrus limon (lemon) essential oil.


Meow Meow Tweet Stick

Overview: A green beauty fave now in a convenient stick form!

Contains Baking Soda? Yes and No - both available

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass!

End of Day Moisture Test: Dry

Application: Carefully push small amount of product up in tube. Gently apply a thin layer to clean, dry skin. If product is cold, warm stick between hands before pushing up and against skin before application.

Texture: Cream-based solid stick

Residue: The cream dries quickly, but can leave white residue if not careful sneaking into that blouse or dress. Be careful not to apply too much, a little goes a long way.

Scent:

With baking soda Lemon Eucalyptus and Lavender Bergamot 

Without Baking Soda Grapefruit

Notable: Vegan. Packaged in a biodegradable paper tube.

Precautions: The cream contains no unnecessary hardeners or waxes, so the consistency will change with temperature fluctuation. (Don't keep it in your car!)

Bottom Line: Get it if you prefer a stick over a jar, but I prefer the jar formulation (texture and application) if I had to pick.

Shop: Integrity Botanicals, Credo Beauty or The Detox Market $22, 4.5 oz stick

Ingredients: Lemon Eucalyptus: *Helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, *maranta arundinacea (arrowroot) root powder, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, magnesium hydroxide, *butyrospermum parkii (shea) fruit butter, *theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, sodium bicarbonate, *rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract, citrus medica limonum (lemon) peel oil, *eucalyptus globulus (eucalyptus) leaf oil, *eugenia caryophyllus (clove) flower oil.  

Lavender Bergamot: *Helianthus annuus (sunflower) seed oil, *maranta arundinacea (arrowroot) root powder, euphorbia cerifera (candelilla) wax, magnesium hydroxide, *butyrospermum parkii (shea) fruit butter, *theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter, sodium bicarbonate, *rosmarinus officinalis (rosemary) leaf extract, *lavandula angustifolia (lavender) oil, citrus aurantium bergamia (bergamot, bergaptene-free) fruit oil, *cymbopogon schoenanthus (lemongrass) oil, *mentha piperita (peppermint) oil. *certified organic ingredient


Agent Nateur

Overview: A luxurious deodorant that glides on effortlessly with a light scent and gentle for the most delicate of skins. There are 3 types:

  • N°3 Holi(stick)
  • N°4 Holi(Rose)
  • N°5 Holi(Man)

Contains Baking Soda? Yes

Best for: Everyday

End-of-day Stink Test: The N°3 was best for light activity, while the N°4 Holi(Rose) and N°5 Holi(Man) seemed to keep us dry and fresh even in the humid heat of the south!

End of Day Moisture Test: Lightly moist with N°3 but dry with N°4 and N°5

Application: After removing the accompanying plastic cap, gently glide stick onto dry skin of the armpit with one pass in each direction.

Texture: Smooth solid that melts just enough against your body temperature.

Scent: N°3: Lavender/Eucalyptus. N°4: Rose. N°5: Light Sandalwood. 

Residue: Very little, if any. One of your best bets against those white stains on black blouses!

Notable: A unique formulation with beeswax, honey and avocado butter which you don't see in any other deodorant!

Precautions: I haven't taken this out in the heat, but I wouldn't recommend keeping in your car (*ahem* my husband's workout bag) otherwise it will most likely melt.

Bottom Line: The N°4 Holi(Rose) and N°5 Holi(Man) are our current go-to's and favorite smelling!

Shop: Beauty Heroes, $19 ($16.15 after member discount), Integrity Botanicals, The Detox Market, or Citrine Natural Beauty Bar, $19, 1.7 oz

Ingredients: Ingredients; Organic coconut oil, sodium bicarbonate, beeswax, sunflower butter, avocado butter, castor oil, raw organic honey, lavender essential oil, hydrogen peroxide, eucalyptus oil, love


Holly's Keeping It Real

Overview: Simple 4-ingredient, small-batch deodorant

Contains Baking Soda? Yes

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass!

End of Day Moisture Test: Dry

Application: Apply a small amount (think a little bigger than a pea) to underarms with fingertips

Texture: My first impression was it resembled whipped frosting! Mmmm. Don't eat it please. 

Residue: Very little. This dries within seconds

Scent: Lavender, Grapefruit or Sweet Orange

Notable: Vegan, glass jar

Precautions: The cream contains no unnecessary hardeners or waxes, so the consistency will change with temperature fluctuation. (Don't keep it in your car!)

Bottom Line: Honestly, the products that come in a jar and require finger application, however much people dislike that part, always end up being the best performing for me. 

Shop: Holly's Keeping It Real, $13, 2 oz

Ingredients: Organic Coconut Oil, Arrowroot Powder, Non-Aluminum Baking Soda, Essential Oil (Lavender, Grapefruit or Sweet Orange depending on scent choice)


Soapwalla

Overview: Does a great job absorbing wetness and maintaining a pleasant odor!

Contains Baking Soda?  Yes

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass

End-of-day Moisture Test: Dry

Application: Apply under the arms before starting your day and reapply as much as needed. You may notice increased skin sensitivity the day you shave. If so, please refrain from using the day you shave, and resume your deodorant use the next day. Alternatively, some clients shave in the evening, then use the deodorant the next morning without issue.

Texture: Creamy, but a little gritty.

Scent: Original (mild tea tree smell) or Citrus

Residue: The cream dries quickly, but can leave white residue if not careful sneaking into that blouse or dress. Be careful not to apply too much, a little goes a long way.

Notable: Vegan

Precautions: Product can melt in heat, keep it cool, friends

Bottom Line: A great cream based choice!

Shop: Integrity Botanicals, The Detox Market or Follain, $14, 2 oz

Ingredients: Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Oil*, Helianthus Annuus (Sunflower) Oil*, Rosehip Seed Oil*, Butyrospermun Parkii (Shea) Butter; Corn Starch*, Sodium Bicarbonate, Kaolin Clay, Vegan Kosher Glycerin*, Essential Oil Blend: Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender)*, Melaleuca Alternifolia (Tea Tree)*, Citrus Sinensis (Sweet Orange), Mentha Piperita (Peppermint)*, Citrus Aurantium Bergamia (Bergaptene-free Bergamot)*, Non-GMO Soy lecithin*, Non-GMO Vitamin E*. *Certified Organic Ingredient


Ursa Major Hoppin' Fresh

Overview: Uniquely formulated deodorant tackles underarm odor while absorbing excess moisture and soothing sensitive skin.  

Contains Baking Soda? Yes and No. A new baking-soda free (No B.S.) version was just released.

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass!

End-of-day Moisture Test: Somewhere between dry and lightly moist - I was still impressed!

Application: Apply thoroughly to clean, dry skin as often as desired.  (A cool, tingly sensation may occur.)

Texture: Smooth solid that melts just enough against your body temperature.

Scent:

  • Original - A crisp and naturally cooling blend of eucalyptus, ginger, rosemary, grapefruit, chamomile and lemon
  • No B.S. - Unscented, though it has a light coconut water smell to me

Residue: Very little, a great option to use against those white stains on black blouses!

Notable: Has a nice cooling sensation upon application! One of two formulations I've seen that uses the anti-microbial and anti-bacterial ingredient, Hops, to fight odor.

Precautions: Color may vary slightly from batch to batch. Can start to melt if you plan to torture it in the heat. Uses tocopheryl acetate, which may be of low concern, though I'm not to worked up about it.

Bottom Line: I love the cooling sensation this has at application. Some days are hot and muggy and not only does this help fight bacteria and odor but it leaves you feeling cooler where you need it!

Shop: Integrity Botanicals (both) and Follain (original only), $18, 2.6 ozClean Beauty Deodorant Guide | janny: organically.

Ingredients:

Original: Aloe vera (aloe barbadensis) leaf juice*, propanediol, sodium Stearate, tapioca Starch, silica, microcrystalline cellulose, cellulose gum, shea (butyrosperum parkii) butter (community trade), sodium bicarbonate, kaolin (clay), tocopheryl acetate, glyceryl caprylate, glyceryl undecylenate, glycerin, royal jelly extract, hops (humulus lupulus) extract, lemon (citrus medica limonum) peel extract, ginseng (panax quinquefolium) root extract, calendula officinalis flower extract, matricaria (chamomilla recutita) flower extract, saccharomyces ferment, rosemary (rosmarinus officinalis) leaf oil, peppermint (mentha piperita) oil, grapefruit (citrus grandis) peel oil, eucalyptus (eucalyptus globulus) leaf oil. *denotes organic ingredient

No B.S.: Aloe barbadensis leaf juice*, propanediol, sodium stearate, tapioca starch, saccharomyces ferment, silica, kaolin (clay), glyceryl caprylate, microcrystalline cellulose, glycerin, glyceryl undecylenate, butyrospermum parkii (shea) butter (community trade), tocopheryl acetate, cellulose gum, humulus lupulus (hops) extract, royal jelly extract, citrus medica limonum (lemon) peel extract, calendula officinalis (marigold) flower extract, chamomilla recutita (matricaria) flower extract, panax quinquefolium (ginseng) root extract. *denotes organic ingredient


Captain Blankenship

Overview: Another great in-the-jar option for odor management and wetness absorption.

Contains Baking Soda? Yes

Best for: Leisurely and/or Active Lifestyles

End-of-day Stink Test: Pass!

End-of-day Moisture Test: Somewhere between dry and lightly moist - I was still impressed!

Application: Apply to your underarms with your fingers. Or you could use a brush or small spoon. Just a pea-sized amount goes a long way! Repeat as necessary.

Texture: Somewhere between a cream and a balm

Scent: Lime Vetiver (smells like a sweet lime margarita or a key lime pie, try not to lick your armpits)

Residue: Very little, a great option to use against those white stains on black blouses!

Notable: The smell...my goodness...I didn't mind doing the pit checks on this one let me tell ya.

Precautions: Same with most of the others - keep it out of the high heat so it won't melt

Bottom Line: Get it. When you're not using as a deodorant, perhaps you can light it as a candle to enjoy that majestic aroma!? 

Shop: Captain Blankenship Shop, $16 or Amazon, $19 2.6 oz

Ingredients: Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Organic Arrowroot Powder, Baking Soda, Organic Shea Butter, Hops Extract, Beeswax, Non-GMO Vitamin E, Organic Essential Oils of Lime, Lemongrass and Vetiver.


The ones that weren't for me

The Clean Beauty Deodorant Guide - the ones that weren't for me - janny: organically.


These clean deodorants have some committed fans, but they just didn't work for me or my husband

  • The Honest Company's spray never completely dried after application and left us feeling sweaty all day
  • Primal Pit Paste and Bare Bones both are formulated in such a way that leaves an oily residue on our clothing even when we applied less and waited up to 20 minutes before getting dressed. They work well at controlling odor but we've ruined too many shirts to continue use.
  • Osmia Organics - Y'all know we are huge Osmia fans; we use their facial soap and body oil daily, but the deodorant didn't work controlling our odor

Was this helpful? Let me know if there are any others you want me to try out or any you love that I missed! Share in the comments!

*This post contains affiliate links.

image.jpg