8 Deodorant Alternatives That Will Help Eliminate Body Odor

You can find several of these products around your house.
SI Staff

Like most people, your morning routine likely includes brushing your teeth, washing your face and applying deodorant before leaving for a busy day out. Of course, the latter is necessary to avoid smell, but many products, especially those that are also antiperspirants, also have proven to contain chemicals or minerals such as aluminum, parabens, phthalates, talc and sulfates. With that in mind, more and more brands have been releasing natural deodorants free from harmful chemicals—but there are other ways to eliminate these odors that go beyond those sticks, rollers and sprays.

Search TikTok and you’ll find the hashtag #glycolicacidasdeodorant features countless posts, and users approve using glycolic acid as a replacement. Others have discovered Kaia Naturals underarm bar soap thanks to founder Mary Further’s (@MadameSweats) informative posts on the platform, or Iota Body’s Supervitamin Body Wash ($23). But items you might have lying around your house—and specifically in your kitchen—like lemon juice, baking soda or coconut oil, can also be wonderful substitutes.

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Glycolic acid

Glycolic acid is an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that brightens and smooths the skin by creating a chemical exfoliation. Because the underarm area has thinner skin, it is important to test these products on the area before committing. TikTok users recommend The Ordinary’s Glycolic Acid 7 Percent Toning Solution ($13). Surface Deep’s Anti-Odorant Pads ($22), which are made specifically for the underarms and with aloe vera juice to prevent dryness, are another great option.

The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7 Percent Toning Solution, $13 (ulta.com)



Charcoal may create a messier shower experience, but the benefits make it worth it. Its purpose is to draw out impurities, which is why usage in the shower creates a clean slate and will help with smell. Kaia Naturals’ Underarm Bar ($25) also contains salt and apple cider vinegar, which make it a triple threat against odor.

Kaia Naturals The Takesumi Detox Underarm Bar, $25 (ulta.com)


Witch hazel

Witch hazel is a natural astringent, which means it removes excess moisture from the skin and kills bacteria. It will get rid of any unpleasant scents quickly. It’s worth noting that the effects fade fast, so constantly reapplying is key to get through the day.

Thayer’s Witch Hazel Facial Toner, $10.53 (amazon.com)


Baking soda

Just as you can keep baking soda in the fridge to absorb odor, you can apply some to your underarms for the same purpose. Simply mix about 1/8 tsp. with some water and dab onto the area.

Arm & Hammer Baking Soda, $7.99 (amazon.com)


Lemon juice

Another kitchen staple that helps ward off unwanted odor is lemon juice, which is full of citric acid and is a great regulator of odor-causing bacteria. If you don’t want to use lemons, Lume Body Wash ($19.99) contains citric acid, making it an effective alternative. The same is true of Iota’s Supervitamin Body Wash + Soothing ($23), which also contains microbiome balancing prebiotics and postbiotics, which help with body odor levels.

Iota’s Supervitamin Body Wash + Soothing, $23 (iotabody.com)


Coconut oil

There is no denying that coconut oil smells good, but it is also antibacterial and antiviral. Pat a bit under your arms the next time you are heading out, but make sure it is fully dried before dressing to avoid staining your clothes.

SheaMoisture Coconut Oil, $13.41 (amazon.com)


Crystal deodorant

Composed of only mineral salts, crystal deodorant is different from other options, but still extremely effective. Nakd crystal deodorant, which uses mineral salts from Thailand, creates a shield that purifies sweat to avoid any odors for 24 hours.

nakd. Thai Crystal Deodorant, $19.95 (amazon.com)


Rubbing alcohol

Though not an obvious choice, rubbing alcohol kills bacteria and is one of the least expensive options to get rid of body odor. But be sure to avoid using it after shaving because it will sting.

Amazon Basics 70% Rubbing Alcohol, $7.84 (amazon.com)

Rubbing alcoho

Published |Modified
Alisandra Puliti


Alisandra Puliti is a NYC-based entertainment journalist with over 15 years of experience. Before joining the SI Swimsuit team as a contributing editor, the Penn State alum held several positions at HELLO! and HOLA! Media, Us Weekly and OK! Magazine. Throughout her tenure, she has been a fixture at events such as the Golden Globes to the Cannes Film Festival and has interviewed the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Taylor Swift, Eva Longoria, Jay-Z and more of Hollywood’s elite. A self-professed ‘social homebody,’ when she isn’t home binge-watching the newest streaming series or perfecting pasta dishes, her constant wanderlust has her packing her bags and heading out for a new adventure –most likely back to Italy!