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When it comes to deodorants, you’re no longer limited to picking from just a few household brands. With a larger focus in skincare and body products made from safer ingredients, there are a bounty of natural deodorant options from which to choose.
And as a point of clarity, there are two products on the market: antiperspirants, which prevent sweating, and deodorants, which just prevent or minimize body odor caused by bacteria produced when sweating. Natural deodorants are not antiperspirants. Both products are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.
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It should also be said that switching from conventional deodorant to a natural product takes some time, from two to six weeks, for your body to adjust. During that time period, you might actually have body odor even while using the natural product, and it’s often recommended that you detox the skin under your arms before or during the product switch.
People with sensitive skin can react poorly to baking soda, which is a key anti-odor ingredient in many natural deodorants. It can cause a rather painful rash if a reaction occurs, so if you have very sensitive skin, try a baking-soda-free natural deodorant first.
Finding the right natural deodorant for your body chemistry is a lot of trial and error, so we’ve put together a list of some of the best options available to help make the transition. And something to note: natural deodorant is not packaged or marketed to men and women separately — they are unisex.
Best Natural Deodorant for Beginners
Native Sensitive Deodorant ($32.99; amazon.com)
Native Deodorant applies and feels like its more chemical-laden cousins, and makes the transition from the traditional product easier. It’s still all-natural, so you will still need the detox and transition period, but you’ll hardly know it thanks to its pleasant scent and ease of use.
Best Natural Deodorant for Sensitive Skin
Hume Supernatural Aluminum Free Deodorant (Fragrance Free) ($16.99; amazon.com)
This formula from Hume Supernatural is both baking soda and fragrance free, making it really popular among those with extra-sensitive skin. It’s a clear stick, so it won’t show up on your clothes, and also nourishes your skin with aloe and coconut. Hume uses diatomaceous earth, tapioca starch and kaolin to absorb moisture and kill odor without stripping your skin of its natural microbiome.
Best Natural Deodorant for Heavy Activity
Lovefresh Natural Deodorant ($24; amazon.com)
Reviewers of Lovefresh Natural Deodorant swear by it thanks to its keen ability to hold up during active activities like running and playing sports. It’s handmade in Toronto, and the brand is quick to say that the texture of its batches may vary. Instructions are provided about how to handle the product if it’s too firm or too soft.
Best Natural Deodorant Cream Formula
Little Seed Farm All Natural Deodorant Cream ($13.99; amazon.com)
Activated charcoal is the key to the success of this little jar of cream deodorant. Charcoal is known for its absorbent powers and it’s joined by organic arrowroot powder, coconut oil, beeswax and a bevy of essential oils to make this smooth and easy to use. If you’re not using a cream deodorant regularly, it takes some getting used to the application, but once you do it’s a breeze. Little Seed Deodorant comes in recycled glass jars, so it’s plastic-free and reusable once it’s empty.
Best All-Around Natural Deodorant
Lume Natural Deodorant ($16.99; amazon.com)
When we say all-around, we really do mean all-around, as in all around your body. Lume was designed to handle odor control anywhere you need it, from armpits to feet. And, according to its research, it blocks odor for 72 hours. This formula in particular is a traditional stick deodorant, but it does come in a cream as well which might be better for different application areas.
Best Natural Deodorant Spray Formula
EO Organic Deodorant Spray ($7; amazon.com)
EO Organics puts the simple in clean and simple. There are only three ingredients in this natural deodorant spray: alcohol, water and essential oils. Reviewers love the simplicity and safety of the ingredients but note that you may have to reapply at least once on extra stressful or active days.
Best Widely Available Natural Deodorant
Tom’s of Maine Simply Natural Aluminum Free Deodorant ($3.99; amazon.com)
Tom’s of Maine was started by a couple who needed something more from their personal care products, and by “more” we mean “less.” Swap the harmful ingredients for natural, earth-friendly ones. They started with toothpaste and quickly expanded to being one of the largest brands for natural personal products. The Simply Natural line keeps you smelling fresh for up to 24 hours and comes in two scents (Fresh Powder or Tea Tree).
Prices are accurate and items in stock at time of publishing.